Only a brief word to let you recognize that we have been improper about Firefox and Pwn2Own in our newest podcast…
…however we have been proper about how Mozilla would react in our newest podcast promotional video:
Newest podcast 🎧 Pay attention now! Firefox & Pwn2Own, Apple and an 0-day… and the arithmetic that defeated Pythagoras.https://t.co/HDrZPQzlAQ pic.twitter.com/DxgdC8VM1j
— Bare Safety (@NakedSecurity) Might 20, 2022
Within the video, we mentioned (our personal emphasis beneath):
Within the podcast, we speculated, “Was this [recent Firefox fix] pushed out simply in time for Pwn2Own, within the hope that it will forestall the assault working?” If that was the explanation, it didn’t work. […] However we do know that Mozilla can be speeding to repair this one as quickly as they get the main points out of the Pwn2Own competitors.
In an article final weekend, after our Linux distro had acquired an apparently-hurried out-of-band Firefox patch however the replace nonetheless hadn’t proven on on Firefox’s web site, we discovered ourselves questioning, “Is there some type of cybersecurity scramble on right here?”
This replace added a sandbox safety characteristic generally known as Win32k Lockdown that had been months, if not years, within the making, however had simply missed schedlued launch 100.0.
Accordingly, we speculated that Firefox 100.0.1, a mere point-release during which a model new Home windows safety characteristic had all of a sudden been activated, was wrangled out specifically, simply in time for this 12 months’s Pwn2Own hacking competitors in Vancouver, Canada.
Why not wait?
We have been shocked that Mozilla didn’t merely wait till the subsequent scheduled launch, 101.0, to show the brand new characteristic on and announce it as a characteristic, somewhat than as a “safety repair”, givem that it wasn’t there to cease a transparent and particular assault that was already recognized.
Often, level releases come out to cope with pressing points that genuinely can’t wait, similar to new options that flop, or zero-day bugs that all of a sudden present up within the wild and want coping with earlier than the subsequent four-weekly main replace deadline rolls round.
However with Pwn2Own going down this very week, and with Firefox within the firing line from skilled and profitable bug hunter Manfred Paul, possibly Mozilla figured that it was price squeezing out 100.0.1 in time for the competition?
Simply in case the brand new sandbox characteristic may throw an sudden spanner into Paul’s otherwise-certain-to-succeed hacking session, and save the day?
Quick-forward to Wednesday, and Paul’s session began with 30’00” on the clock, counting downwards (a tough higher sure of half-hour is imposed for every entrant).
After a quick pause, the adjudicator reached out and clicked a button to provoke the hacking try by visiting a URL that was able to unleash Paul’s double-exploit remotely. (The server was distant in community phrases; bodily it was on the identical desk because the shopper underneath assault.)
Loosely talking, Paul deliberate to interrupt into Firefox, incomes $50,000’s price of bug bounty for distant code execution, after which to interrupt again out of it, incomes one other $50,000 for a full sandbox escape.
About seven elapsed seconds later, with a fist pump of acknowledgment from the adjudicator (Pwn2Own is thrilling for everybody, not simply the hackers), and with an unsurprisingly pleased smile from Manfred Paul, now $100,000 higher off, the clock was stopped, having simply flipped over to point out 29’52”.
If Win32k Lockdown was purported to cease the Pwn2Own assault, it didn’t, though we don’t doubt that the brand new sandbox safety will make loads of future exploits tougher to seek out and fewer dependable to make use of.
To say a Pwn2Own prize, the deal is that you need to “present your working” to the maker of the system you simply cracked, and provides them first dibs at fixing it.
All correct bug bounties require what’s generally known as accountable disclosure of this kind, after all, however Pwn2Own isn’t nearly recognizing potential bugs and calling them in with a crash log that means an exploit is perhaps potential.
Pwn2Own is about researching and writing up the bug and its risks with cautious and repeatable particulars, as much as and together with a working exploit.
Nicely finished to everybody concerned
Nicely, that seven-second spectacular pwnage occurred on Wednesday 2022-05-18.
And on Friday 2022-05-20, about an hour earlier than midnight UK time, Firefox popped as much as inform us, “An replace is obtainable to 100.0.2”.
Listed here are the related safety notes, from Mozilla Safety Advisory 2022-19:
What to do?
We’ve patched already – how about you?
For the fourth time up to now week, we’re going to say: Patch early, patch usually.
With a response time like this, it will be impolite to not!
Oh, and a vey large “nicely finished and thanks” to everybody at each stage of this bug finding-and-fixing course of.