ICS Advisory

Johnson Controls Kantech Gen1 ioSmart

Release Date
Alert Code
ICSA-23-348-02

View CSAF

1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

  • CVSS v3 7.5
  • ATTENTION: Exploitable from adjacent network
  • Vendor: Sensormatic Electronics, LLC, an affiliate of Johnson Controls Inc.
  • Equipment: Kantech Gen1 ioSmart card reader
  • Vulnerability: Missing Release of Memory after Effective Lifetime

2. RISK EVALUATION

An attacker with physical access to the Kantech Gen1 ioSmart card reader in certain circumstances can recover the reader's communication memory between the card and reader.

3. TECHNICAL DETAILS

3.1 AFFECTED PRODUCTS

The following versions of Kantech Gen1 ioSmart card reader are affected:

  • Kantech Gen1 ioSmart card reader: firmware versions prior to 1.7.2

3.2 Vulnerability Overview

3.2.1 MISSING RELEASE OF MEMORY AFTER EFFECTIVE LIFETIME CWE-401

Kantech Gen1 ioSmart card readers with firmware versions prior to 1.7.2 do not properly release memory after its effective lifetime. An attacker with physical access to the Kantech Gen1 ioSmart card reader in certain circumstances can recover the reader's communication memory between the card and reader. CWE-200: Exposure of Sensitive Information to an Unauthorized Actor also applies to this vulnerability.

CVE-2023-0248 has been assigned to this vulnerability. A CVSS v3.1 base score of 7.5 has been calculated; the CVSS vector string is (AV:A/AC:H/PR:N/UI:N/S:C/C:L/I:H/A:L).

3.3 BACKGROUND

  • CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE SECTORS: Critical Manufacturing
  • COUNTRIES/AREAS DEPLOYED: Worldwide
  • COMPANY HEADQUARTERS LOCATION: Ireland

3.4 RESEARCHER

Colin O'Flynn at NewAE Technology Inc. reported this vulnerability to Johnson Controls. Johnson Controls reported this vulnerability to CISA.

4. MITIGATIONS

Johnson Controls recommends users update their Kantech Gen1 ioSmart card reader firmware to version 1.7.2 or higher.

Johnson Controls also makes the following recommendations and wishes to provide the following information:

  • Contact technical support for additional information.
  • ioSmart Gen2 card readers are not affected by this vulnerability.
  • Users should contact their local sales representative for ordering information.
  • For more detailed mitigation instructions, please see Johnson Controls Product Security Advisory JCI-PSA-2023-03 v1. Further ICS security notices and product security guidelines can also be found at this website.

CISA recommends users take defensive measures to minimize the risk of exploitation of this vulnerability, such as:

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

CISA reminds organizations to perform proper impact analysis and risk assessment prior to deploying defensive measures.

CISA also provides a section for control systems security recommended practices on the ICS webpage on cisa.gov/ics. Several CISA products detailing cyber defense best practices are available for reading and download, including Improving Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity with Defense-in-Depth Strategies.

CISA encourages organizations to implement recommended cybersecurity strategies for proactive defense of ICS assets.

Additional mitigation guidance and recommended practices are publicly available on the ICS webpage at cisa.gov/ics in the technical information paper, ICS-TIP-12-146-01B--Targeted Cyber Intrusion Detection and Mitigation Strategies.

Organizations observing suspected malicious activity should follow established internal procedures and report findings to CISA for tracking and correlation against other incidents.

No known public exploitation specifically targeting this this vulnerability has been reported to CISA at this time. This vulnerability is not exploitable remotely. This vulnerability has a high attack complexity.

5. UPDATE HISTORY

  • December 14, 2023: Initial Publication

This product is provided subject to this Notification and this Privacy & Use policy.

Vendor

Johnson Controls