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Category:   Application (Generic)  >   Adobe Acrobat/Reader Vendors:   Adobe Systems Incorporated
Adobe Acrobat Reader Uudecoding Errors Let Remote Users Execute Arbitrary Code
SecurityTracker Alert ID:  1010941
SecurityTracker URL:  http://securitytracker.com/id/1010941
CVE Reference:   CVE-2004-0630, CVE-2004-0631   (Links to External Site)
Date:  Aug 12 2004
Impact:   Execution of arbitrary code via network, User access via network
Fix Available:  Yes  
Version(s): 5.05, 5.06
Description:   iDEFENSE reported two vulnerabilities in Adobe Acrobat Reader for UNIX/Linux. A remote user can create a specially crafted Portable Document Format (PDF) file that, when loaded by the target user, will execute arbitrary code.

It is reported that the software's uudecode feature does not properly validate user-supplied input, failing to filter the backtick character in a filename before executing a shell command based on the filename [CVE: CVE-2004-0630]. As a result, a remote user can create a specially crafted filename that will cause arbitrary commands to be executed when the document is opened.

Greg MacManus is credited with discovering this flaw.

It is also reported that there is a buffer overflow in the processing of uuencoded filenames [CVE: CVE-2004-0631]. The software reportedly fails to verify the length of the filename before copying the filename into a fixed length buffer. A remote user can create a specially crafted filename so that when the document is opened, arbitrary code is executed. The code will run with the privileges of the target user opening the PDF document.

An anonymous person was credited with discovering this flaw.

The vendor was reportedly notified on March 30, 2004.

The original advisories are available at:

http://www.idefense.com/application/poi/display?id=124&type=vulnerabilities
http://www.idefense.com/application/poi/display?id=125&type=vulnerabilities

Impact:   A remote user can cause arbitrary commands or arbitrary code to be executed on the target user's system with the privileges of the target user.
Solution:   The report indicates that the vendor silently fixed these flaws but did not publicly disclose the presence of these flaws or indicate that a fix is available. iDEFENSE states that version 5.0.9 appears to be not vulnerable.
Vendor URL:  www.adobe.com/ (Links to External Site)
Cause:   Boundary error, Input validation error
Underlying OS:  Linux (Any), UNIX (Any)

Message History:   None.


 Source Message Contents

Subject:  iDEFENSE Security Advisory 08.12.04a: Adobe Acrobat Reader (Unix)


Adobe Acrobat Reader (Unix) Shell Metacharacter Code Execution
Vulnerability

iDEFENSE Security Advisory 08.12.04a
www.idefense.com/application/poi/display?id=124&type=vulnerabilities
August 12, 2004

I. BACKGROUND

Adobe Acrobat Reader is a program for viewing Portable Document Format
(PDF) documents. Uuencoding is a scheme that converts 8 bit data into a
6 bit format, suitable for transmission via e-mail.

II. DESCRIPTION

Remote exploitation of an input validation error in the uudecoding
feature of Adobe Acrobat Reader (Unix) 5.0 allows an attacker to execute
arbitrary code.

The Unix and Linux versions of Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 automatically
attempt to convert uuencoded documents back into their original format.
The vulnerability specifically exists in the failure of Acrobat Reader
to check for the backtick shell metacharacter in the filename before
executing a command with a shell. This allows a maliciously constructed
filename to execute arbitrary programs.

III. ANALYSIS

Successful exploitation allows attackers to execute arbitrary code under
the privileges of the user who opened the malicious document with a
vulnerable version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. PDF documents are frequently
exchanged via e-mail and in combination with a social engineering attack
allows attackers to remotely exploit this vulnerability.

IV. DETECTION

Adobe Acrobat Reader (Unix) versions 5.05 and 5.06 have been confirmed
vulnerable; earlier versions that call the uudecode utility are also
thought to be vulnerable.

V. WORKAROUNDS

Users must be wary when opening attachments from untrusted sources
whether they are executable or not. As the Windows version of Acrobat
Reader is not vulnerable to the described vulnerability it can be safely
used to open PDF documents suspected to be maliciously designed to
exploit this issue.

VI. VENDOR RESPONSE

iDEFENSE brought this vulnerability to the attention of the vendor
according to the publicized timeline. However, the vendor appears to
have silently fixed this vulnerability without coordinating public
disclosure of the issue. Moreover, the vendor does not appear to have
publicly posted details of the security fix to inform clients of the
risks posed by unpatched versions of the software. While it is not clear
exactly when the vulnerability was patched, iDEFENSE has tested Adobe
Acrobat Reader (UNIX) 5.0.9, which appears to be patched against this
vulnerability.

VII. CVE INFORMATION

The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the
name CAN-2004-0630 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in
the CVE list (http://cve.mitre.org), which standardizes names for
security problems.

VIII. DISCLOSURE TIMELINE

03/30/2004   Initial vendor notification
04/05/2004   iDEFENSE clients notified
04/06/2004   Initial vendor response
05/19/2004   Date stamp on patched binary
08/12/2004   Public disclosure

IX. CREDIT

Greg MacManus (iDEFENSE Labs) is credited with this discovery.

Get paid for vulnerability research
http://www.idefense.com/poi/teams/vcp.jsp

X. LEGAL NOTICES

Copyright (c) 2004 iDEFENSE, Inc.

Permission is granted for the redistribution of this alert
electronically. It may not be edited in any way without the express
written consent of iDEFENSE. If you wish to reprint the whole or any
part of this alert in any other medium other than electronically, please
email customerservice@idefense.com for permission.

Disclaimer: The information in the advisory is believed to be accurate
at the time of publishing based on currently available information. Use
of the information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS condition.
There are no warranties with regard to this information. Neither the
author nor the publisher accepts any liability for any direct, indirect,
or consequential loss or damage arising from use of, or reliance on,
this information.


-----


Adobe Acrobat Reader (Unix) 5.0 Uudecode Filename Buffer Overflow
Vulnerability

iDEFENSE Security Advisory 08.12.04b
www.idefense.com/application/poi/display?id=125&type=vulnerabilities
August 12, 2004

I. BACKGROUND

Adobe Acrobat Reader is a program for viewing Portable Document Format
(PDF) documents. Uuencoding is a scheme that converts 8 bit data into a
6 bit format, suitable for transmission via e-mail.

II. DESCRIPTION

Remote exploitation of a buffer overflow in the uudecoding feature of
Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 for Unix allows an attacker to execute
arbitrary code.

The Unix and Linux versions of Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 automatically
attempt to convert uuencoded docuements back into their original format.

The vulnerability specifically exists in that Acrobat Reader fails to
check the length of the filename before copying it into a fixed length
buffer. This allows a maliciously constructed file to cause a buffer
overflow resulting in the execution of arbitrary code.

III. ANALYSIS

Successful exploitation allows attackers to execute arbitrary code under
the privileges of the user who opened the malicious document with a
vulnerable version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. PDF documents are frequently
exchanged via e-mail and in combination with a social engineering attack
allows attackers to remotely exploit this vulnerability.

IV. DETECTION

Adobe Acrobat Reader (UNIX) versions 5.05 and 5.06 have been confirmed
vulnerable; earlier versions that call the uudecode utility are also
thought to be vulnerable.

V. WORKAROUNDS

Users must be wary when opening attachments from untrusted sources
whether they are executable or not. As the Windows version of Acrobat
Reader is not vulnerable to the described vulnerability it can be safely
used to open PDF documents suspected to be maliciously designed to
exploit this issue.

VI. VENDOR RESPONSE

iDEFENSE brought this vulnerability to the attention of the vendor
according to the publicized timeline. However, the vendor appears to
have silently fixed this vulnerability without coordinating public
disclosure of the issue. Moreover, the vendor does not appear to have
publicly posted details of the security fix to inform clients of the
risks posed by unpatched versions of the software. While it is not clear
exactly when the vulnerability was patched, iDEFENSE has tested Adobe
Acrobat Reader (UNIX) 5.0.9, which appears to be patched against this
vulnerability.

VII. CVE INFORMATION

The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the
name CAN-2004-0631 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in
the CVE list (http://cve.mitre.org), which standardizes names for
security problems.

VIII. DISCLOSURE TIMELINE

03/30/2004   Initial vendor notification
04/01/2004   iDEFENSE clients notified
04/06/2004   Initial vendor response
05/19/2004   Date stamp on patched binary
08/12/2004   Public disclosure

IX. CREDIT

The discoverer wishes to remain anonymous.

Get paid for vulnerability research
http://www.idefense.com/poi/teams/vcp.jsp

X. LEGAL NOTICES

Copyright (c) 2004 iDEFENSE, Inc.

Permission is granted for the redistribution of this alert
electronically. It may not be edited in any way without the express
written consent of iDEFENSE. If you wish to reprint the whole or any
part of this alert in any other medium other than electronically, please
email customerservice@idefense.com for permission.

Disclaimer: The information in the advisory is believed to be accurate
at the time of publishing based on currently available information. Use
of the information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS condition.
There are no warranties with regard to this information. Neither the
author nor the publisher accepts any liability for any direct, indirect,
or consequential loss or damage arising from use of, or reliance on,
this information.



 
 


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