SMB vulnerabilities and exploits are one of the most common types of cyberattacks in the Windows world. If you want to know about SMB attacks, their expansion, and defense against them such as patch management as a service, we’ve got your back. In this article, we have covered everything you need to know about SMBs and protection against such exploits.

Also, Read How to Use Smart Tech Against Cybercrime

What is SMB, and Why is It Important?

An SMB or Server Message Block is a client-server network protocol for communications within a Windows-based environment. SMBs are utilized for sharing files, printers, serial ports, or any other resource on a network.

SMBs are so significant because they control the entire process of sending secure data over networks. For example, they control authentication, printing over the network, and file sharing. Also, they communicate with other server programs configured to receive SMB client requests.

SMB protocol performs all these functions for Windows-based networks, but most other OSs such as Linux and macOS also connect to SMB resources.

What is an SMB Vulnerability?

In Windows systems before Windows 10, there were vulnerabilities that gave hackers an opportunity to access a system and insert malware.

Currently, there are three major known SMB vulnerabilities. One of these vulnerabilities on an SMB server allows for buffer overflow and permits hackers to control content in several memory locations. Another vulnerability within the file-sharing firewall doesn’t verify the code before installing it and allows hackers to put malware from remote locations. 

The third vulnerability is related to SMB transaction handling. Every system depends upon a stable order of events, and if they are not in the correct order, a bug occurs, allowing hackers to go inside the system.

How Does an SMB Attack Work?

SMB attacks are notorious as the most popular remote code execution attacks on Windows systems. Hackers can be anywhere, and with simple access to the foothold in a system, they can exploit the system, run commands, and place malware.

The worst part about these attacks is that hackers can expand their access through the system. Unpatched Windows systems can get infected when they come in contact with another infected system. Hence, hackers can get the maximum out of these attacks with less work, making SMB exploits so common.

SMB Attacks

Examples of SMB Attacks

The most popular SMB attack was in 2017, when EternalBlue, an exploit used against a vulnerability in SMB v1.0, eventually became one of the most intrusive and renowned malware in cybersecurity history. The malware used in these exploits, i.e., WannaCry (ransomware) and Emotet (Trojan), could self propagate through a network. As a result, it persisted for more than a year worldwide. Other popular SMB attacks are EternalRomance used for NotPetya, Bad Rabbit, and EternalEnergy.

So, even if most of these threats are no longer functional and nothing significant has appeared in a while, it is essential that we note these threats as future attackers might use similar techniques to exploit systems or networks.

SMB Vulnerability Protection

The best possible way to protect systems from SMB attacks is by using an efficient patch management system. A smartly patched system won’t give access to hackers and save your company from exploitation. Patches such as the WannaCry patch can block EternalBlue exploits and other similar vulnerabilities.

Along with these patches, you can also protect your systems by blocking SMB access from the internet or offsite computers or disabling SMB if not required.

And finally, you can use vulnerability scanning and managed detection and response services to protect yourself against SMB attacks and other kinds of cyberattacks.

SMB Vulnerability Protection

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