Two zero-day flaws have been uncovered in Zoom’s macOS client version, according to researchers. The web conferencing platform vulnerabilities could give local, unprivileged attackers root privileges, and allow them to access victims’ microphone and camera.
The flaws, uncovered by Patrick Wardle, principle security researcher with Jamf, emerge as Zoom comes under increased scrutiny over its security measures, particularly with more employees working from home over the past few weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Today, we uncovered two (local) security issues affecting Zoom’s macOS application,” said Wardle in a post this week. “Given Zoom’s privacy and security track record this should surprise absolutely zero people.”
The first flaw stems from an issue with Zoom’s installer and allows unprivileged attackers to gain root privileges. The issue stems from the Zoom installer using the AuthorizationExecuteWithPrivileges application programming interface (API) function, which is used to install the Zoom MacOS app (leveraging preinstallation scripts) without any user interaction.
Ever wondered how the @zoom_us macOS installer does it’s job without you ever clicking install? Turns out they (ab)use preinstallation scripts, manually unpack the app using a bundled 7zip and install it to /Applications if the current user is in the admin group (no root needed). pic.twitter.com/qgQ1XdU11M
— Felix (@c1truz_) March 30, 2020
The second zero day flaw gives attackers Zoom’s mic and camera access, allowing for a way to record Zoom meetings, or snoop in on victims’ personal lives — sans a user access prompt.
The revelation is another mark of Zoom’s apparently lax privacy and security practices. The app has risen to prominence following global lockdown and social-distancing measures that have forced many organizations to resort to remote working. Last week it emerged that Zoom was sending data to Facebook even if users didn’t have a Facebook account.