The Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) is a commonly used network
service. Its primary function is to provide network administrators with
information about all kinds of network connected devices. SNMP can be used
to get and change system settings on a wide variety of devices, from network
servers, to routers and printers. The drawback to this service is the
authentication is an unencrypted "community string". In addition many SNMP
servers provide very simple default community strings.
The community string "hp_admin" was found to have write access to the SNMP
server. This is a very serious condition and should be fixed as soon as
possible. Attackers with write access to an SNMP server can possibly execute
arbitrary commands with root level privilege. Attackers can shutdown machines,
stop, start, or change the priority of tasks, and gain valuable information.