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Category:   Application (Forum/Board/Portal)  >   Serendipity Vendors:
Serendipity Input Validation Flaw in Category Creation Permits Cross-Site Scripting Attacks
SecurityTracker Alert ID:  1031961
SecurityTracker URL:
CVE Reference:   CVE-2015-2289   (Links to External Site)
Date:  Mar 23 2015
Impact:   Disclosure of authentication information, Disclosure of user information, Execution of arbitrary code via network, Modification of user information
Fix Available:  Yes  Vendor Confirmed:  Yes  Exploit Included:  Yes  
Version(s): 2.0
Description:   A vulnerability was reported in Serendipity. A remote user can conduct cross-site scripting attacks.

The category creation page does not properly filter HTML code from user-supplied input before displaying the input. A remote user can cause arbitrary scripting code to be executed by the target user's browser. The code will originate from the site running the Serendipity software and will run in the security context of that site. As a result, the code will be able to access the target user's cookies (including authentication cookies), if any, associated with the site, access data recently submitted by the target user via web form to the site, or take actions on the site acting as the target user.

The serendipity[cat][name] parameter is affected.

Edric Teo reported this vulnerability.

Impact:   A remote user can access the target user's cookies (including authentication cookies), if any, associated with the site running the Serendipity software, access data recently submitted by the target user via web form to the site, or take actions on the site acting as the target user.
Solution:   The vendor has issued a fix (2.0.1).

The vendor's advisory is available at:

Vendor URL: (Links to External Site)
Cause:   Input validation error
Underlying OS:  Linux (Any), UNIX (Any), Windows (Any)

Message History:   None.

 Source Message Contents

Subject:  Serendipity CMS - XSS Vulnerability in Version 2.0

Serendipity CMS - XSS Vulnerability in Version 2.0


Product Information:

Software: Serendipity CMS
Tested Version: 2.0, released 23.1.2015
Vulnerability Type: Cross-Site Scripting (CWE-79)
Download link:
Description: Serendipity is aimed to make everything possible you ever wish for. It is technically up to par to other well-known weblog scripts like Moveable Type or Wordpress. (copied from


Vulnerability description:

XSS is found in category creation page.

When an authenticated user of Serendipity CMS is creating a new category, the following POST request is sent to the server:

POST /serendipity-2.0/serendipity/serendipity_admin.php?serendipity[adminModule]=category&serendipity[adminAction]=new HTTP/1.1
Proxy-Connection: keep-alive
Content-Length: 394
Cache-Control: max-age=0
Accept: text/html,application/xhtml+xml,application/xml;q=0.9,image/webp,*/*;q=0.8
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/41.0.2272.76 Safari/537.36
Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded
Accept-Encoding: gzip, deflate
Accept-Language: en-US,en;q=0.8
Cookie: serendipity[old_session]=q8jagkbn03i41p1hea1vp3mqi7; serendipity[author_token]=906de2dd7201b75f1f710f59128e1ffb5cec6cf4; serendipity[userDefLang]=en; serendipity[toggle_extended]=true; serendipity[addmedia_directory]=undefined; serendipity[sortorder_perpage]=; serendipity[sortorder_order]=; serendipity[sortorder_ordermode]=; serendipity[only_path]=; serendipity[only_filename]=; serendipity[entrylist_filter_author]=; serendipity[entrylist_filter_category]=; serendipity[entrylist_filter_isdraft]=; serendipity[entrylist_sort_perPage]=; serendipity[entrylist_sort_ordermode]=; serendipity[entrylist_sort_order]=; s9y_f857b4bc988a333c379a2d9bd477dd65=q8jagkbn03i41p1hea1vp3mqi7


The parameter serendipity[cat][name] is vulnerable to XSS.

The payload is executed when an authenticated user navigates to the "New Entry" page.



An attacker is able to leverage on the XSS vulnerability to exploit content creator of Serendipity CMS. An example would be to inject malicious JavaScript code in order to use attacking tools like BeEF.



Update to the latest version, which is 2.0.1, see



Vulnerability found: 12.3.2015
Vendor informed: 12.3.2015
Response by vendor: 12.3.2015
Fix by vendor 12.3.2015
Public Advisory: 13.3.2015




Best regards,
Edric Teo

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