CVE Vulnerabilities


Use of a Broken or Risky Cryptographic Algorithm

Published: Jan 17, 2023 | Modified: Feb 13, 2023
CVSS 3.x
CVSS 2.x

The Birthday attack against 64-bit block ciphers flaw (CVE-2016-2183) was reported for the health checks port (9979) on etcd grpc-proxy component. Even though the CVE-2016-2183 has been fixed in the etcd components, to enable periodic health checks from kubelet, it was necessary to open up a new port (9979) on etcd grpc-proxy, hence this port might be considered as still vulnerable to the same type of vulnerability. The health checks on etcd grpc-proxy do not contain sensitive data (only metrics data), therefore the potential impact related to this vulnerability is minimal. The CVE-2023-0296 has been assigned to this issue to track the permanent fix in the etcd component.


The product uses a broken or risky cryptographic algorithm or protocol.

Affected Software

Name Vendor Start Version End Version
Openshift Redhat 4.11 (including) 4.11 (including)
Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 4.10 RedHat openshift4/ *
Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 4.11 RedHat openshift4/ *
Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 4.12 RedHat openshift4/ *
Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 4.9 RedHat openshift4/ *

Extended Description

Cryptographic algorithms are the methods by which data is scrambled to prevent observation or influence by unauthorized actors. Insecure cryptography can be exploited to expose sensitive information, modify data in unexpected ways, spoof identities of other users or devices, or other impacts. It is very difficult to produce a secure algorithm, and even high-profile algorithms by accomplished cryptographic experts have been broken. Well-known techniques exist to break or weaken various kinds of cryptography. Accordingly, there are a small number of well-understood and heavily studied algorithms that should be used by most products. Using a non-standard or known-insecure algorithm is dangerous because a determined adversary may be able to break the algorithm and compromise whatever data has been protected. Since the state of cryptography advances so rapidly, it is common for an algorithm to be considered “unsafe” even if it was once thought to be strong. This can happen when new attacks are discovered, or if computing power increases so much that the cryptographic algorithm no longer provides the amount of protection that was originally thought. For a number of reasons, this weakness is even more challenging to manage with hardware deployment of cryptographic algorithms as opposed to software implementation. First, if a flaw is discovered with hardware-implemented cryptography, the flaw cannot be fixed in most cases without a recall of the product, because hardware is not easily replaceable like software. Second, because the hardware product is expected to work for years, the adversary’s computing power will only increase over time.

Potential Mitigations

  • When there is a need to store or transmit sensitive data, use strong, up-to-date cryptographic algorithms to encrypt that data. Select a well-vetted algorithm that is currently considered to be strong by experts in the field, and use well-tested implementations. As with all cryptographic mechanisms, the source code should be available for analysis.
  • For example, US government systems require FIPS 140-2 certification [REF-1192].
  • Do not develop custom or private cryptographic algorithms. They will likely be exposed to attacks that are well-understood by cryptographers. Reverse engineering techniques are mature. If the algorithm can be compromised if attackers find out how it works, then it is especially weak.
  • Periodically ensure that the cryptography has not become obsolete. Some older algorithms, once thought to require a billion years of computing time, can now be broken in days or hours. This includes MD4, MD5, SHA1, DES, and other algorithms that were once regarded as strong. [REF-267]
  • Use a vetted library or framework that does not allow this weakness to occur or provides constructs that make this weakness easier to avoid.
  • Industry-standard implementations will save development time and may be more likely to avoid errors that can occur during implementation of cryptographic algorithms. Consider the ESAPI Encryption feature.