Instant Images Vulnerability– One Click Image Uploads from Unsplash, Openverse, Pixabay, and Pexels – Authenticated (Author+) Arbitrary Options Update – CVE-2024-0869 |WordPress Plugin Vulnerability Report

Plugin Name: Instant Images – One Click Image Uploads from Unsplash, Openverse, Pixabay, and Pexels

Key Information:

  • Software Type: Plugin
  • Software Slug: instant-images
  • Software Status: Active
  • Software Author: connekthq
  • Software Downloads: 1,803,436
  • Active Installs: 100,000
  • Last Updated: February 2, 2024
  • Patched Versions: 6.1.1
  • Affected Versions: <= 6.1.0

Vulnerability Details:

  • Name: Instant Images <= 6.1.0
  • Title: Authenticated (Author+) Arbitrary Options Update
  • Type: CVSS:3.1/AV:N/AC:L/PR:L/UI:N/S:U/C:H/I:H/A:H
  • CVE: CVE-2024-0869
  • CVSS Score: 8.8
  • Publicly Published: January 29, 2024
  • Researcher: Sean Murphy
  • Description: The Instant Images plugin is vulnerable to unauthorized arbitrary options updates in versions up to and including 6.1.0. This vulnerability arises from an inadequate security check within the plugin's instant-images/license REST API endpoint, which fails to verify if the updated option is specific to the plugin. Consequently, this flaw allows authors with sufficient permissions to alter arbitrary options, potentially leading to significant security breaches.


Instant Images, a popular plugin facilitating one-click image uploads from various sources, contains a critical vulnerability in versions up to and including 6.1.0. This flaw enables users with author-level access or higher to illicitly modify arbitrary options within the plugin, posing a considerable risk to WordPress site integrity. The vulnerability has been addressed in the recent patch, version 6.1.1.

Detailed Overview:

Discovered by security researcher Sean Murphy, this significant security lapse within the Instant Images plugin's REST API endpoint could allow malicious actors to exploit the system by updating options they shouldn't have access to. Such unauthorized actions could compromise site functionality, leak sensitive information, or provide a gateway for further exploits. The severity of this issue, underscored by a CVSS score of 8.8, prompted an immediate response from the plugin developers, culminating in the release of a patched version that rectifies this oversight.

Advice for Users:

Users of the Instant Images plugin are strongly advised to update to version 6.1.1 immediately to protect their sites from potential exploitation. Site administrators should also conduct a thorough review of their WordPress settings and plugin options to check for any unauthorized changes. In cases where immediate updating is not possible, consider disabling the plugin temporarily and exploring alternative image upload solutions to maintain site security. Regularly updating all WordPress components remains a critical practice for safeguarding your online presence.


The swift action taken by the developers of Instant Images to issue a patch for this vulnerability highlights the crucial importance of maintaining up-to-date software on your WordPress site. Given the potential for significant security breaches, users are urged to ensure their installations are upgraded to version 6.1.1 or later. Staying vigilant and proactive in updating plugins and themes is essential for defending against evolving cyber threats and ensuring the continued security and reliability of your WordPress site.


In the digital era, where websites are integral to business operations, maintaining robust security is not just advisable; it's imperative. The recent revelation of a significant vulnerability in the Instant Images plugin, a popular tool for WordPress users to upload images from renowned sources like Unsplash and Pixabay, serves as a stark reminder of the ever-present cyber threats. Identified as CVE-2024-0869, this flaw exposes websites to unauthorized modifications, potentially compromising site integrity and user trust.

About the Plugin:

Instant Images is a widely adopted WordPress plugin designed to streamline image uploads, boasting over 1.8 million downloads and 100,000 active installations. Developed by connekthq, it has become an essential tool for many site owners, underscoring the impact of any vulnerabilities within it.

Vulnerability Details:

CVE-2024-0869, discovered by researcher Sean Murphy, is a critical vulnerability that allows users with author-level access or higher to update arbitrary options due to insufficient security checks in the plugin's REST API endpoint. This issue, present in versions up to 6.1.0, received a high CVSS score of 8.8, indicating its severe potential impact. The flaw was publicly disclosed on January 29, 2024, highlighting the necessity for immediate action.

Risks and Potential Impacts:

The vulnerability poses significant risks, including unauthorized site alterations, data breaches, and potential exploitation for further attacks. For small business owners, such security breaches can result in reputational damage, loss of customer trust, and potential legal ramifications, emphasizing the need for prompt remediation.

Remediation and Advice for Users:

The developers of Instant Images swiftly addressed the vulnerability with the release of patch 6.1.1. Users are urged to update their plugin to this latest version immediately to secure their sites. Additionally, reviewing site settings for unauthorized changes and considering alternative plugins during the interim can mitigate risks. Staying diligent with updates across all WordPress components is vital for ongoing security.

Previous Vulnerabilities:

This is not the first time vulnerabilities have been identified in Instant Images, with two previous issues reported since May 17, 2021. This pattern underscores the importance of continuous monitoring and updating to protect against emerging threats.


The rapid response to the CVE-2024-0869 vulnerability by Instant Images' developers underscores a critical aspect of digital security: the need for vigilance. For small business owners, the challenge of staying updated with every security threat might seem overwhelming amidst other responsibilities. However, leveraging tools like automated updates, employing security plugins, and occasionally consulting with cybersecurity professionals can greatly reduce the burden and ensure the security of your WordPress site. In the digital age, proactive security measures are indispensable in safeguarding your online presence and maintaining the trust of your clientele.

Staying Secure

Staying on top of WordPress security can feel overwhelming for small business owners without dedicated IT staff. At Your WP Guy, we exist to shoulder that burden for you. Our WordPress experts can fully audit, secure, maintain and support your site - so you can focus on growing your business with peace of mind.

Don't tackle security risks alone. Let us help you assess any impact from this vulnerability, update your plugins, and implement ongoing maintenance to avoid future threats. We treat your website like it's our own - because we know how critical it is for reaching your customers.

Get in touch for a free consultation today on making WordPress security stress-free. Call 678-995-5169 or book a call here. Our knowledgeable team is ready to help you safeguard your online presence.

Instant Images Vulnerability– One Click Image Uploads from Unsplash, Openverse, Pixabay, and Pexels – Authenticated (Author+) Arbitrary Options Update – CVE-2024-0869 |WordPress Plugin Vulnerability Report FAQs

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