Flaws in medical data management system can be exploited to modify patient information

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Two vulnerabilities found in v3.3 of Epiphany’s Cardio Server ECG Management System, a popular system that is used to centralize and manage patient data by healthcare organizations around the world (but mostly in the US), can be exploited by local attackers to access and modify patient information, warns CERT/CC.

The system can receive data from a great variety of medical devices, and is usually run on local servers belonging to the organization. It allows users (physicians and other medical personnel) to access all kinds of patient data, including diagnostic test results from anywhere in the hospital, their offices or their homes.

The system is accessible via web browser. The two vulnerabilities, found by Alex Lauerman of infosec consultancy TrustFoundry, affect the system’s login page.

An improper neutralization of special elements allows either a SQL command to be inserted into the login page URL, or a LDAP query to be inserted into it. The first issue can lead to an unauthenticated user to get logged in as an administrator, and have access to all the information on the system, and the second one can cause the Cardio Server to perform an LDAP query to the IP address of the attacker’s choice.

The issues are present in v3.3 of the system, and possibly in later versions as well. CERT/CC has tried to get in touch with the vendor – Epiphany Healthcare – to check whether later versions (4.x and 5.x) are also affected, but hasn’t had much luck.

As Cardio Server version 3.x is end-of-life and no longer receives security updates, the only thing organizations can do is to upgrade to version 4.x or 5.x as soon as possible and to pester the vendor about a fix (if the issues haven’t been fixed already).