Firmware Not Updateable

The product does not provide its users with the ability to update or patch its firmware to address any vulnerabilities or weaknesses that may be present.


Description

Without the ability to patch or update firmware, consumers will be left vulnerable to exploitation of any known vulnerabilities, or any vulnerabilities that are discovered in the future. This can expose consumers to permanent risk throughout the entire lifetime of the device, which could be years or decades. Some external protective measures and mitigations might be employed to aid in preventing or reducing the risk of malicious attack, but the root weakness cannot be corrected.

Demonstrations

The following examples help to illustrate the nature of this weakness and describe methods or techniques which can be used to mitigate the risk.

Note that the examples here are by no means exhaustive and any given weakness may have many subtle varieties, each of which may require different detection methods or runtime controls.

Example One

A refrigerator has an Internet interface for the official purpose of alerting the manufacturer when that refrigerator detects a fault. Because the device is attached to the Internet, the refrigerator is a target for hackers who may wish to use the device other potentially more nefarious purposes.

The refrigerator has no means of patching and is hacked becoming a spewer of email spam.
The device automatically patches itself and provides considerable more protection against being hacked.

See Also

Cross-Cutting Problems

Weaknesses in this category can arise in multiple areas of hardware design or can apply to a wide cross-section of components.

Comprehensive CWE Dictionary

This view (slice) covers all the elements in CWE.

Weaknesses in the 2021 CWE Most Important Hardware Weaknesses List

CWE entries in this view are listed in the 2021 CWE Most Important Hardware Weaknesses List, as determined by the Hardware CWE Special Interest Group (HW CWE SIG).

Weaknesses without Software Fault Patterns

CWE identifiers in this view are weaknesses that do not have associated Software Fault Patterns (SFPs), as covered by the CWE-888 view. As such, they represent gaps in...


Common Weakness Enumeration content on this website is copyright of The MITRE Corporation unless otherwise specified. Use of the Common Weakness Enumeration and the associated references on this website are subject to the Terms of Use as specified by The MITRE Corporation.