Palo Alto Networks Security Advisories / CVE-2022-0025

CVE-2022-0025 Cortex XDR Agent: An Uncontrolled Search Path Element Leads to Local Privilege Escalation (PE) Vulnerability

Severity 6.7 · MEDIUM
Attack Vector LOCAL
Attack Complexity LOW
Confidentiality Impact HIGH
Privileges Required HIGH
Integrity Impact HIGH
User Interaction NONE
Availability Impact HIGH


A local privilege escalation (PE) vulnerability exists in Palo Alto Networks Cortex XDR agent software on Windows that enables an authenticated local user with file creation privilege in the Windows root directory (such as C:\) to execute a program with elevated privileges.

This issue impacts:

All versions of the Cortex XDR agent when upgrading to Cortex XDR agent 7.7.0 on Windows;

Cortex XDR agent 7.7.0 without content update 500 or a later version on Windows.

This issue does not impact other platforms or other versions of the Cortex XDR agent.

Product Status

Cortex XDR Agent 7.5 CENoneall
Cortex XDR Agent 7.7< without CU-500 on Windows7.7.* with CU-500, >= on Windows
Cortex XDR Agent 7.6Noneall
Cortex XDR Agent 7.5Noneall
Cortex XDR Agent 7.4Noneall
Cortex XDR Agent 6.1Noneall
Cortex XDR Agent 5.0Noneall

Severity: MEDIUM

CVSSv3.1 Base Score: 6.7 (CVSS:3.1/AV:L/AC:L/PR:H/UI:N/S:U/C:H/I:H/A:H)

Exploitation Status

Palo Alto Networks is not aware of any malicious exploitation of this issue.

Weakness Type

CWE-427 Uncontrolled Search Path Element


This issue is fixed in Cortex XDR agent 7.7.0 with content update 500, Cortex XDR agent 7.7.1 build, and all later Cortex XDR agent versions.

Ensure that Cortex XDR agent is upgraded to Cortex XDR agent or a later build when upgrading Cortex XDR agent to Cortex XDR agent 7.7 to prevent exposure to this vulnerability during the upgrade process.

Workarounds and Mitigations

There are no known workarounds for this issue.


Palo Alto Networks thanks its customers and external security researchers for discovering and reporting this issue.


Initial publication
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