SonicWall warns of ‘imminent ransomware campaign’

Yesterday, cybersecurity firm SonicWall sent an urgent warning to users of some of their legacy products about an ‘imminent ransomware campaign using stolen credentials’ and told some users to disconnect products immediately.

In response to this news, Jeff Costlow, discusses why it’s imperative for organisations to keep up-to-date inventory to discover vulnerabilities as quickly as possible:

“The SonicWall exploit came to light back in April, but now the unpatched firmware has created a new critical threat against legacy devices in what Sonicwall is calling an “imminent ransomware campaign.” In an exploit that could have been avoided, organizations need to immediately understand what software and devices might be affected and identify whether there are any vulnerable legacy devices in their environment. This can be remarkably challenging because many organizations struggle to maintain an up-to-date inventory of devices in their environment, let alone detect software types and versions that devices are running and which need to be addressed.

In this case, the legacy SSL VPN devices which have been discontinued are still in operation with known vulnerabilities. These devices are easily found on the internet and cannot be patched because they are out of service. Most likely, they cannot be disabled by the business because they support a business-critical objective. Attackers are capitalizing on these facts. While according to ExtraHop threat research data, only .06% of devices are potentially impacted by this threat, it only takes one entry point for attackers to land and pivot within an organization. The faster an organization can identify the vulnerable devices, and whether they were compromised, the better the chances of avoiding irrecoverable damage.

Threat actors will take any opportunity to victimize organizations for malicious gain. This exploitation targets a long-known vulnerability that was patched in newer versions of firmware released in early 2021. SonicWall immediately and repeatedly contacted impacted organizations of mitigation steps and update guidance.

Even though the footprint of impacted or unpatched devices is relatively small, SonicWall continues to strongly advise organizations to patch supported devices or decommission security appliances that are no longer supported, especially as it receives updated intelligence about emerging threats. The continued use of unpatched firmware or end-of-life devices, regardless of vendor, is an active security risk.”



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