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Critical Vulnerability in PuTTY SSH Client Versions 0.68-0.80: CVE-2024-31497

, the Secure Shell () and Telnet client, recently discovered a critical vulnerability that affects versions 0.68 through 0.80. The flaw assigned to the identifier -2024-31497 could be exploited to fully recover private keys NIST P-521 (ecdsa-sha2-nistp521). Researchers Fabian Bäumer and Marcus discovered this vulnerability, and the maintainers of are urging all users to take immediate action.

The NIST P-521 elliptic curve algorithm is widely used for secure communications, including cryptographic key exchange and digital signatures. The vulnerability in could allow an attacker to recover the private key of any NIST P-521 key pair generated by the vulnerable version of .

Furthermore, the vulnerability could be exploited in a number of ways, including through a MitM (man-in-the-middle) attack. In this attack, the attacker intercepts the encrypted communication between two parties and then uses the vulnerability to recover the private key. This would allow the attacker to read and modify all data sent between the parties.

The impact of this vulnerability is significant, as it could compromise sensitive information, such as login credentials, financial data, and other personal information. As a result, all users of versions 0.68 through 0.80 must take immediate action to update their software to a secure version. The maintainers of have released an updated version (0.81) that addresses this vulnerability.

In conclusion, if you are using any of the affected versions of , we strongly recommend that you update to the latest version as soon as possible to ensure the security of your data and systems.

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