HP patches a high-severity security flaw in the HP Support Assistant, which helps keep HP computer in working order by finding updates and providing troubleshooting tools.
It’s a software tool that comes pre-installed on all HP laptops and desktop computers, including the Omen sub-brand. It carries out hardware diagnostic tests, dive deeper into technical specifications, check performance related metrics, and driver updates on HP devices.
The flaw is tracked as (CVE-2022-38395), with a high severity score of 8.2, which leads to privilege escalation vulnerability. The flaw was revealed by researchers at Secure D.
“It is possible for an attacker to exploit the DLL hijacking vulnerability and elevates privileges when Fusion launches the HP Performance Tune-up”, reads the advisory from HP
Thus, a DLL hijacking vulnerability triggered when the user launches HP Performance Tune-up within HP Support Assistant. This takes place when a threat actor places a DLL containing malicious code on the same folder as the abused executable, exploiting Windows’ logic to prioritize those libraries against DLLs in the System32 directory.
The subsystem that can trigger the DLL hijacking attack
In this case, the code that executes by loading the library assumes the privileges of the abused executable which is HP Support Assistant running with ‘SYSTEM’ privileges.
- HP Support Assistant versions earlier than 9.11.
- Fusion versions earlier than 1.38.2601.0.
HP advises the customers update to the latest version of HP Support Assistant that includes fixes for issues by turning on automatic updates in the HP Support Assistant settings.
If the system has HP Support Assistant version 8x, it is recommended to upgrade to HP Support Assistant version 9 by going to the “About” section and “check for updates”. If the system has HP Support Assistant version 9, keep the Microsoft Store updates turned on so that the application is always kept up to date.
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