Meltdown and Spectre - Impact On Node.js

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Michael Dawson

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Jan 9, 2018, 2:03:05 PM1/9/18
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Summary

Project zero has recently announced some new attacks that have received a lot of attention: https://googleprojectzero.blogspot.ca/2018/01/reading-privileged-memory-with-side.html.

The risk from these attacks to systems running Node.js resides in the systems in which your Node.js applications run, as opposed to the Node.js runtime itself. The trust model for Node.js assumes you are running trusted code and does not provide any separation between code running within the runtime itself. Therefore, untrusted code that
would be necessary to execute these attacks in Node.js could already affect the execution of your Node.js applications in ways that are more severe than possible through these new attacks.

This does not mean that you don't need to protect yourself from these new attacks when running Node.js applications. If an attacker manages to run malicious code on an unpatched OS (whether using JavaScript or something else) they may be able to access memory and or data that they should not have access to.  In order to protect yourself from these cases, apply the security patches for your operating system. You do not need to update the Node.js runtime.

Contact and future updates

The current Node.js security policy can be found at https://nodejs.org/en/security/.

Please contact secu...@nodejs.org if you wish to report a vulnerability in Node.js.

Subscribe to the low-volume announcement-only nodejs-sec mailing list at https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/nodejs-sec to stay up to date on security vulnerabilities and security-related releases of Node.js and the projects maintained in the nodejs GitHub organisation.

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