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Cisco Details Wireless LAN Vulnerabilities

Cisco says its Wireless Control System, an application for managing lightweight access points and WLAN controllers, has flaws that could allow remote users to perform a wide range of malicious acts.

Cisco Wednesday revealed details on two vulnerabilities that could enable remote attackers to gain unauthorized administrative access to wireless LANs.

The first affects Cisco's Wireless Control System (WCS), an application for managing lightweight access points and WLAN controllers.

Cisco Wednesday issued an advisory outlining numerous vulnerabilities in WCS that could enable remote users to perform a wide range of malicious acts, such as logging in with a default password, obtaining access point encryption keys, launching cross-site scripting attacks, and reading and writing to files in the WCS system.

In an advisory issued Wednesday to subscribers of DeepSight Threat Management System, Symantec rated the severity of the flaw as 8.9 on a 10 point scale and said the vulnerabilities only require access to the WCS application in order to be exploited.

A second flaw that came to light Wednesday involves an issue in the Cisco Access Point Web interface that could enable remote attackers to bypass authentication and gain access to the administrative interface.

In a separate advisory, Symantec gave this issue its highest severity rating, 10 out of 10. The Cupertino, Calif.-based security vendor outlined an attack scenario in which an attacker could find a remotely accessible access point with its Web interface enabled, connect to the interface without logging in, and gain full administrative privileges to the access point and possibly use it to launch subsequent attacks.

As a workaround in the meantime, Cisco recommends disabling Web-based management. The issue only affects Cisco Access Points running Cisco IOS Software Release 12.3(8)JA or 12.3(8)JA1.

San Jose, Calif.-based Cisco issued advisories for both vulnerabilities and said it will release free software to its affected customers.

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