Critical GitHub Enterprise Server Flaw Allows Authentication Bypass

GitHub Enterprise Server Authentication Bypass

GitHub, the renowned platform for software development, recently addressed a critical flaw in the GitHub Enterprise Server (GHES) that could potentially allow an attacker to bypass authentication protections. This vulnerability, tracked as CVE-2024-4985, carries a maximum severity rating with a Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) score of 10.0.

The flaw could permit unauthorized access to a GHES instance without requiring prior authentication. Specifically, on instances that use SAML single sign-on (SSO) authentication with the optional encrypted assertions feature, an attacker could forge a SAML response to provision and/or gain access to a user with administrator privileges.

The issue impacts all versions of GHES prior to 3.13.0. However, GitHub has promptly addressed the flaw in the following versions: 3.9.15, 3.10.12, 3.11.10, and 3.12.4.

GitHub further noted that encrypted assertions are not enabled by default. Therefore, the flaw does not affect instances that do not utilize SAML single sign-on (SSO) or those that use SAML SSO authentication without encrypted assertions. Encrypted assertions allow site administrators to improve a GHES instance’s security with SAML SSO by encrypting the messages that the SAML identity provider (IdP) sends during the authentication process.

This incident underscores the importance of robust security measures in software development platforms. It also highlights the need for regular updates and patches to ensure the security of these platforms against potential threats. As the digital landscape continues to evolve, so too must the security measures that protect it.

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