IBM Support

Security Bulletin: IBM Cognos Controller is vulnerable to privilege escalation (CVE-2020-4685)

Security Bulletin


IBM Cognos Controller is vulnerable to privilege escalation. This has been addressed.

Vulnerability Details

CVEID:   CVE-2020-4685
DESCRIPTION:   A low level user of Cognos Controller who has Administration rights to the server where the application is installed, can escalate their privilege from Low level to Super Admin and gain access to Create/Update/Delete any level of user in Cognos Controller.
CVSS Base score: 8
CVSS Temporal Score: See: for the current score.
CVSS Vector: (CVSS:3.0/AV:N/AC:H/PR:H/UI:N/S:C/C:H/I:H/A:H)

Affected Products and Versions

IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.2 On-Premise and Cloud

IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.1 On-Premise and Cloud

IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.0

IBM Cognos Controller 10.3.1

IBM Cognos Controller 10.3.0


The recommended solution is to apply the fix for versions listed as soon as practical:

IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.2

Download IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.2 IF7

IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.1

Download IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.1 IF8

IBM Cognos Controller 10.4.0, IBM Cognos Controller 10.3.1 and IBM Cognos Controller 10.3.0

IBM Cognos Controller 10.3.0 FP1 IF15, 10.3.1 IF15 and 10.4.0 IF10

IBM Cognos Controller on Cloud customers: This has been addressed on all applicable Cloud environments . No further action is required.

Workarounds and Mitigations


Get Notified about Future Security Bulletins




The vulnerability was reported to IBM by Faraz Khan (The Emirates Group)

Change History

Feb 16 2021: Updated Remediation/Fixes section
Feb 12 2021: Updated Affected Versions section
Feb 12 2021: Updated Remediation / Fixes section
Jan 28 2021: Updated Remediation/Fixes section
Jan 19 2021: Updated Remediation/Fixes section
Nov 10 2020: Initial Publication

*The CVSS Environment Score is customer environment specific and will ultimately impact the Overall CVSS Score. Customers can evaluate the impact of this vulnerability in their environments by accessing the links in the Reference section of this Security Bulletin.


According to the Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams (FIRST), the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) is an "industry open standard designed to convey vulnerability severity and help to determine urgency and priority of response." IBM PROVIDES THE CVSS SCORES ""AS IS"" WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. CUSTOMERS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR ASSESSING THE IMPACT OF ANY ACTUAL OR POTENTIAL SECURITY VULNERABILITY.

Document Location


[{"Business Unit":{"code":"BU053","label":"Cloud & Data Platform"},"Product":{"code":"SS9S6B","label":"IBM Cognos Controller"},"Component":"","Platform":[{"code":"PF033","label":"Windows"}],"Version":"10.4.2, 10.4.1, 10.4.0, 10.3.1, 10.3.0, ","Edition":"All","Line of Business":{"code":"LOB10","label":"Data and AI"}}]

Document Information

Modified date:
16 February 2021