ICS Advisory

CSWorks Software SQL Injection Vulnerability

Last Revised
Alert Code


Researcher John Leitch, working with HP’s Zero Day Initiative (ZDI), has identified an SQL injection vulnerability in CSWorks’ CSWorks software framework. CSWorks has produced an updated version that mitigates this vulnerability.

This vulnerability could be exploited remotely.


The following CSWorks software versions are affected:

  • CSWorks Version 2.5.5050.0 and prior.


Successful exploitation of this vulnerability may leave applications developed with CSWorks software vulnerable to SQL injection attacks. The implications of this vary depending on the intended function of the developed application.

Impact to individual organizations depends on many factors that are unique to each organization. NCCIC/ICS-CERT recommends that organizations evaluate the impact of this vulnerability based on their operational environment, architecture, and product implementation.


CSWorks is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, and provides industrial automation support and process control software.

The affected product, CSWorks software framework, is a web-based software framework that can be used to build process control applications. According to CSWorks, the CSWorks software framework is deployable across several sectors including Commercial Facilities, Communications, and Critical Manufacturing. CSWorks estimates that the CSWorks software is primarily deployed in Norway, Russia, and Spain.



SQL INJECTIONCWE-89: Improper Neutralization of Special Elements used in an SQL Command ('SQL Injection'), http://cwe.mitre.org/data/definitions/89.html, web site last accessed May 15, 2014.

The CSWorks software does not properly sanitize or validate the data used to construct read and write paths, which may make applications built with the affected product to be susceptible to an SQL injection attack. Depending on the intended use of the application, an attacker may be able to exploit this vulnerability to achieve remote code execution.

CVE-2014-2351NVD, http://web.nvd.nist.gov/view/vuln/detail?vulnId=CVE-2014-2351, NIST uses this advisory to create the CVE web site report. This web site will be active sometime after publication of this advisory. has been assigned to this vulnerability. A CVSS v2 base score of 7.5 has been assigned; the CVSS vector string is (AV:N/AC:L/Au:N/C:P/I:P/A:P).CVSS Calculator, http://nvd.nist.gov/cvss.cfm?version=2&vector=AV:N/AC:L/Au:N/C:P/I:P/A:P, web site last accessed May 15, 2014.



This vulnerability could be exploited remotely.


No known public exploits specifically target this vulnerability.


An attacker with a low skill level would be able to exploit this vulnerability.


CSWorks has addressed this vulnerability in the updated version of CSWorks, Version 2.5.5233.0. The updated version of CSWorks is available at:


For additional mitigation and installation information, please review CSWorks’ security release at the following location:


ICS-CERT encourages asset owners to take additional defensive measures to protect against this and other cybersecurity risks.

  • Minimize network exposure for all control system devices and/or systems, and ensure that they are not accessible from the Internet.
  • Locate control system networks and remote devices behind firewalls, and isolate them from the business network.
  • When remote access is required, use secure methods, such as Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), recognizing that VPNs may have vulnerabilities and should be updated to the most current version available. Also recognize that VPN is only as secure as the connected devices.

ICS-CERT also provides a section for control systems security recommended practices on the ICS-CERT web page at: http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/content/recommended-practices. Several recommended practices are available for reading and download, including Improving Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity with Defense-in-Depth Strategies. ICS-CERT reminds organizations to perform proper impact analysis and risk assessment prior to deploying defensive measures.

Additional mitigation guidance and recommended practices are publicly available in the ICS‑CERT Technical Information Paper, ICS-TIP-12-146-01B--Targeted Cyber Intrusion Detection and Mitigation Strategies, that is available for download from the ICS-CERT web site (http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/).

Organizations observing any suspected malicious activity should follow their established internal procedures and report their findings to ICS-CERT for tracking and correlation against other incidents.