Flash Player weaknesses represented six of the top ten flaws leveraged by exploit kits, a new report said.
Vulnerabilities in Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, Windows, and Silverlight rounded out the top 10 vulnerabilities used by exploit kits.
An analysis of 141 exploit kits showed an Internet Explorer flaw tracked as CVE-2016-0189 was the most referenced on security blogs, deep web forum postings and dark web sites, according to the Recorded Future report.
The vulnerability ended up exploited in targeted attacks before Microsoft released a patch, but shortly after the fix became available, it ended up integrated into several major exploit kits, including Sundown, Neutrino, RIG and Magnitude.
The flaw adopted by the highest number of exploit kits is Flash Player’s CVE-2015-7645. The exploit has been in Neutrino, Angler, Magnitude, RIG, Nuclear, Spartan and Hunter.
Researchers believe this exploit is popular because it affects all major operating systems, and it was the first weakness discovered after Adobe introduced a series of new mitigations.
The list of vulnerabilities adopted by multiple EKs also includes the Flash bugs and a Silverlight flaw discovered by Kaspersky in November 2015. All of these security holes had been undergoing exploitation.
While some of the most commonly used vulnerabilities identified in the latest report have been issued CVE identifiers in 2014 and 2015, Recorded Future noted none of the issues mentioned in last year’s report carried over to the 2016 top 10.
After the Angler and Nuclear exploit kits disappeared from the scene, they ended up replaced by Neutrino and RIG. In October, researchers found Neutrino was also either shut down or its authors stopped offering it publicly, allowing RIG to take the lead.
Recorded Future pointed out while RIG is the leader, Sundown is also popular.