Microsoft EMET has a problem with Java – but who doesn’t ?

EMET stands for Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit – and it is a tool that you MUST have installed on your Windows PC.

EMET is a utility that helps prevent vulnerabilities in software from being successfully exploited.EMET achieves this goal by using security mitigation technologies.

These technologies function as special protections and obstacles that an exploit author must defeat to exploit software vulnerabilities. These security mitigation technologies do not guarantee that vulnerabilities cannot be exploited. However, they work to make exploitation as difficult as possible to perform. For more information about EMET, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

2458544 The Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit

When EMET mitigations are applied to certain software or certain kinds of software, compatibility issues may occur because the protected software behaves similarly to how an exploit would behave. This article describes the kind of software that usually presents compatibility issues with EMET’s mitigations and a list of products that exhibited compatibility issues with one or more of the mitigations that are offered by EMET.

 

Java and EMET

While I was installing a software that was needing JAVA, EMET popped up several time with an error:

EMET version 5.5.5871.31892
EMET detected EAF mitigation in javaw.exe

EAF check failed:
Application : C:\Program Files (x86)\Java\jre1.6.0_02\bin\javaw.exe
User Name : DEVMASTER\sorin
Session ID : 1
PID : 0x2B1C (11036)
TID : 0xB48 (2888)
Module : N/A
Mod Base : 0x00000000
Mod Address : 0x004804CE
Mem Address : 0x77A242CC

 

So, what does this mean?

EAF stands for: Export Address Table Access Filtering

Apparently… nothing. According to this Technet forum thread , EMET has known compatibility issues with .. a lot of applications: Dropbox, Java, Skype, various Apple  programs and the list is very big.

emet-app

This made me curious, since I was running with default settings.

On the above website I see even a note:

ǂ EMET mitigations might be incompatible with Oracle Java when they are run by using settings that reserve a large chunk of memory for the virtual machine (that is, by using the -Xms option).

Oops…

In order to be able to do something when you run into such issues, you need to configure EMET to not block the application but just to audit it. (see in the above screenshot – top right corner)

 

More on EMET here: https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/security/jj653751

 

 


© Copyright 2016 Sorin Mustaca, All rights Reserved. Written For: Sorin Mustaca on Cybersecurity

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About the Author

Sorin Mustaca

Sorin Mustaca, (ISC)2 CSSLP, CompTIA Security+ and Project+, is working since year 2000 in the IT Security industry and worked between 2003-2014 for Avira as Product Manager for the known products used by over 100 million users world-wide. Today he is an independent IT Security Consultant focusing on Cybersecurity, secure software development and security for IoT and Automotive. He is also running his personal blog Sorin Mustaca on Cybersecurity and is the author of the free eBook Improve your security .

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