Azure Defender for DevOps – First Impressions

The recent batch of high profile security incidents at various companies in Australia highlights the need for appropriate security measures across all components of an organisation’s infrastructure. Defender for DevOps is a new functional addon (in preview) to Defender for Cloud. It provides security functionality for your code respositories and associated components.


When navigating to the Defender for Cloud interface, a new option will appear under the “Cloud Security” heading.

The new DevOps Security option

Once we click on this, we are presented with an intro splash page with steps to getting started. The first step is to connect to the environments. Both Azure DevOps and Github repositories are supported environments.

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VMSA-2022-0007 – VMware Tools vulnerability

VMware have published a new security advisory relating to VMware Tools for Windows. It affects v10 and 11 of the Tools. The vulnerability allows a user with local admin rights in the guest OS to acquire system privileges.

The version with the fix for this vulnerability is 12.0.0. While this is a major version jump, from the release notes there doesn’t appear to be any major breaking changes. It still supports Windows as far back as 7 SP1/2008 R2 SP1.

VMSA-2021-0020 – 19 vulnerabilities on vCenter

VMware published a new security advisory overnight (VMSA-2021-0020) and it’s a big one. In total, it lists 19 vulnerabilities affecting multiple versions of vCenter. The most serious of the vulnerabilities is the first one – CVE-2021-22005. This vulnerability allows an attacker to upload files to vCenter. This vulnerability could then be used as an avenue to execute code. It’s been giving a CVSS score of 9.8

The second most worrying item on the list (CVE-2021-21991) allows an attacker to escalate their priveleges to Administrator level in the vSphere web interface. This vulnerability has been scored at 8.8.

The resolution for all these vulnerabilities is to update vCenter to the appropriate version. The advistory lists these, and I’ve produced a condensed version below.

Product/VersionUpdate ToNotes
vCenter 7.07.0 U2dThe majority of issues are fixed by going to U2c. U2d resolves CVE-2021-22011 and CVE-2021-22018
vCenter 6.76.7 U3oThis version will resolve all the associated issues with 6.7
vCenter 6.56.5 U3q This version will resolve all the associated issues with 6.5

Given the nature of some of these vulnerabilities, this would be one to get onto ASAP.

Remediating VMSA-2021-0002 – Potential Issues

In late February, VMware published their second security advisory for 2021. It contained contained three items:

  • CVE-2021-21972 – A remote code execution vulnerability in vCenter that has a CVSS score of 9.8
  • CVE-2021-21974 – A vulnerablity in OpenSLP, which is used in ESXi. This one has a CVSS score of 8.8
  • CVE-2021-21973 – Another vCenter vulnerability that was rated with a CVSS score of 5.3

Given the product versions affected, most organisations with relatively up to date virtualisation infrastructure would be at risk from these items. While testing and simulating the update process, I ran into some issues that might be worth publishing for a broader audience.

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Adding extra service mappings to Nexpose

Nexpose does have good coverage of services in the “well known” range of ports (0-1024).  An environment with a lot of propriety systems will cause Nexpose to some services as unknown or even misidentifying them.  The screenshot below is a good example of this.

Nexpose Services Data
Nexpose Services Data

The example is from a Domain Controller.  Nexpose identifies the port 3389 service correctly as RDP.  Ports 3269/32769 are used by the Global Catalog service, so labelling them as LDAP/LDAPS isn’t strictly accurate.  For port 3260 and 5666 it gives up.  Depending on your needs, you may want to get these labels a bit more accurate.  This can be achieved by using a custom service names file (you can alter the default one, but it’s probably best to leave that in its default state).

The default file,, is located in the <install location>/plugins/java/1/NetworkScanners/1 folder.  The format is basic, with each line as <port #>/<tcp or udp>=<Service Name>.  Some of the custom ports I added are shown below:

Custom Service Mappings
Custom Service Mappings


Once the properties file is in a state you’re happy with, place it in the same folder as the default one and either create a new or edit an existing scan template and put the file name into the field on the Service Discovery section.  Load up the page of an asset to test and queue a scan on it with the scan template.  The reported services should update with the new values.