Student stiffs penetration tool BackTrack Linux with 0-day

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A student has discovered a critical vulnerability in BackTrack, a flavour of Linux that's a favourite among security pros.

The previously undiscovered (hence zero-day) privilege escalation bug in the network penetration-testing distro was discovered during an ethical hacking class organised by the InfoSec Institute.

Jack Koziol, security programme manager at the institute, explained that the bug in Backtrack 5 R2 (the latest version) allowed the student to overwrite settings to gain a root shell. The flaw was found in wicd (the Wireless Interface Connection Daemon), which has not been tested for "potential remote exploitation vectors" according to Koziol.

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