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Microsoft Vulnerability Research Advisory MSVR11-015

Vulnerability in Hex-Rays IDA Pro, IDAPython Plugin Could Allow Arbitrary Script Execution

Published: December 20, 2011 | Updated: December 21, 2011

Version: 2.0

Overview

Executive Summary

Microsoft is providing notification of the discovery and remediation of a vulnerability affecting IDA Pro running the IDAPython plugin. By default, the IDAPython plugin is installed with all versions of IDA Pro. Microsoft discovered and disclosed the vulnerability under coordinated vulnerability disclosure to the affected vendor, Hex-Rays. Hex-Rays has remediated the vulnerability in their software.

A vulnerability exists in the way that IDA Pro running the IDAPython plugin parses IDB files that could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary script. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could execute a script with the same user rights as the logged-on user. If a user is logged on with administrative user rights, an attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

Microsoft Vulnerability Research reported this issue to and coordinated with Hex-Rays to ensure remediation of this issue. The vulnerability has been assigned the entry CVE-2011-4783, in the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures list. For more information about updates from Hex-Rays, visit the Hex-Rays IDA Pro website.

Mitigating Factors

  • The vulnerability cannot be exploited automatically through email. For an attack to be successful, a user must open an attachment that is sent in an email message.
  • In a Web-based attack scenario, an attacker could host a website that contains a specially crafted file that is used to exploit this vulnerability. In addition, compromised websites and websites that accept or host user-provided content or advertisements could contain specially crafted content that could exploit this vulnerability. In all cases, however, an attacker would have no way to force users to visit these websites. Instead, an attacker would have to convince users to visit the website, typically by getting them to click a link in an email message or Instant Messenger message that takes users to the attacker’s website, and then convince them to open the specially crafted file.
  • An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the logged-on user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.

Advisory Details

Purpose and Recommendation

Purpose of Advisory: To notify users of a vulnerability and its remediation.

Advisory Status: Advisory published.

Recommendation: Review the Suggested Actions section and configure as appropriate.

Issue References

For more information about this issue, see the following references:

ReferenceIdentification
Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2011-4783

Affected and Non-Affected Software

This advisory discusses the following software:

Affected Software
IDA Pro running IDAPython 1.5.0
IDA Pro running IDAPython 1.5.2
Non-Affected Software
IDA Pro running IDAPython 1.5.2.3
IDA Pro running IDAPython 1.5.3

What is the scope of this advisory? 
This advisory is part of a coordinated release with affected vendors to inform customers of a security issue that may affect their systems.

Is this a security vulnerability that requires Microsoft to issue a security update? 
No. This vulnerability has been fixed via an update from the affected third-party vendors. The update remediates the software listed in the table, Affected Software.

What is the scope of the vulnerability? 
This is an arbitrary script execution vulnerability. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could execute a script with the same user rights as the logged-on user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.

What causes the vulnerability? 
The vulnerability exists in the way that IDA Pro, specifically the IDAPython Plugin which is installed by default, handles parsing IDB files.

What might an attacker use this vulnerability to do? 
An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as a logged-on user. If the user is logged on with administrative user rights, an attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

How could an attacker exploit the vulnerability? 
An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by tricking a user into opening a specially crafted file with an affected version of IDA Pro. Typically these specially crafted files are delivered via social engineering techniques in email, instant messaging, or via download links on websites. This vulnerability cannot be exploited without user interaction.

Download and use the latest version of IDAPython with your IDA Pro installations.

Other Information

Acknowledgments

Microsoft thanks the following:

Disclaimer

The information provided in this advisory is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Microsoft disclaims all warranties, either express or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. In no event shall Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers be liable for any damages whatsoever including direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, loss of business profits or special damages, even if Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers have been advised of the possibility of such damages. Some states do not allow the exclusion or limitation of liability for consequential or incidental damages so the foregoing limitation may not apply.

Revisions

  • V1.0 (December 20, 2011): Advisory published.
  • V2.0 (December 21, 2011): Added IDA Pro running IDAPython 1.5.2 to the list of affected software.

Built at 2014-04-18T13:49:36Z-07:00

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