Microsoft Windows Huge Text Processing Instability

SECURE TARGET (Security Advisory October 17, 2004)

Topic: Microsoft Windows Huge Text Processing Instability
Discovery Date: October 14, 2004
Original Advisory
External Links: VULDB, Full-Disclosure, BugTraq, SICHERHEITSLüCKEN, Addict3d, Ls, Der Keiler, Seifried, NetSys, Mail Archive, SecLists, Neohapsis, Checksum, Network Security, Virus, DoddsNet, ReadList, Mega Security, Security Trap, Virovvch, DevArchives

Affected applications and platforms:
Notepad, NotePad2 and MetaPad (Seems like all Text Processing Apps) / Microsoft Windows (All Versions)

Introduction:
It is not important, the limitation of opening large text file with “notepad” or similar products like NotePad2 (http://www.flos-freeware.ch) and MetaPad (http://liquidninja.com/metapad/); the point is just the way these tiny text processing apps open and handle large text files (talking about over the 200MB).
The way they handle huge text files, it is near possible for a fast modern PC to be completely unstable. This Instability may path to process injection because you cannot even kill the processes of these apps and they will remain “up and running” even when you logged off. So, it’s possible for a unprivileged user to simply hook to the remaining process of a privilege user and this lead to information disclosure (simply reading the content of the memory before swapping a large file which happens time after time, based on the file size) but may even lead to running privileged tasks based on the app they used for processing text.

Exploit:
It is different to exploit based on the application you choose for text processing; for windows default notepad.exe, it’ll be some like a huge DoS but for NotePad2.exe and MetaPad.exe it is possible to doing process injection (information disclosure and/or running privileged tasks).

Workaround:
The best way to work around this situation is just not to open large text files in windows! or wait a long time for completion of task.

Tested on:
Microsoft Windows XP SP1/SP2RC2/SP2 on Intel P4 2.4 with 1GB of RAM

Feedback:
Kaveh Mofidi [ Admin (at) SecureTarget [dot] net ]
Head of Secure Target Network

PerfectNav Crashes IE

Secure Target Network (Security Advisory February 25, 2004)

Topic: PerfectNav Crashes IE
Discovery Date: February 24, 2004
Original Advisory
External: Full-Disclosure, BugTraq, Security Tracker, xforce, SANS

Affected applications and platforms:
Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1 and older versions

Introduction:
PerfectNav is designed to redirect your URL typing errors to PerfectNav’s web page. Bundled with the Free Ad Supported version of Kazaa Media Desktop 2.6. Likely to be found in software supplied by eUniverse sites, such as thunderdownloads.com, myfreecursors.com, cursorzone.com and mycoolscreen.com. Likely to slow performance of Internet Explorer. Can download and execute arbitrary code as directed by its controlling server, as an update feature.
All of us knew about Hijackers/Browser Helper Objects; some of them may hijack your sessions but do you care crashing your web browser by a single blink?
When you use PerfectNav it is easy to crash your Internet Explorer (iexplore.exe) by any malformed URL like any thing you like: ? /? …
Run “iexplore.exe ?” or type “?” in your IE address bar and simply get the error message:
“An error has occurred in Internet Explorer. Internet Explorer will now close. If you continue to experience problems, please restart your computer.”

Exploit:
Easier to exploit than this bug? Just point out any malformed URL on your target and it will be crashing her/his IE.

Workaround:
The easiest way to work around this vulnerability is just removing PerfectNav from your computer. For information that may help you prevent this problem from reoccurring, click on the link below.
http://www.pestpatrol.com/msperfectnavsupport.asp
If the problem persists, please contact eUniverse.com Inc. and alert them of the problem.
Note: To have PestPatrol automatically detect and remove PerfectNav and its components from your computer, you have to buy PestPatrol!

Tested on:
Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1 (6.0.2800.1106) on Windows XP Service Pack 1a

Feedback:
Kaveh Mofidi ( Admin (at) SecureTarget [dot] net)
Secure Target Network (Security Consulting/Training Group)

New IE Thread crashes by WU

Secure Target Network (Security Advisory December 31, 2003)

Topic: New IE Thread crashes by WU
Discovery Date: December 30, 2003
Original Advisory
External: Full-Disclosure

Affected applications and platforms:
Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1

Introduction:
Any time you open your Windows Update (WU / wupdmgr.exe) and go to “Scan for Updates”; it takes a couple of minutes (based on your system and Net performances) for Microsoft scripting tasks to gather information from your fixing/patching data on your machine.
A security bug exist because when you are in the period which WU scanning your host, you cannot open any New IE windows from some applications and opening this new window just takes time, as long as WU ending its scanning, and it means hanging.
First, it is a security bug because it faces with availability of a component on a windows box. Second, it happens when you open a new IE window from these two situations below:
1. Opening a new IE window by clicking on a hyper link in OE.
2. Opening a new IE window by clicking on a hyper link in IE.
Remember that for facing with this issue, you shouldn’t have an old IE Thread opened from OE or IE before.

Exploit:
This bug may not provide an opportunity to threat a windows box machine with attacks and exposures but it may cause DoS anyway.

Workaround:
The easiest way to work around this vulnerability is just let WU finishing its scanning and then work with IE and OE as usual.

Tested on:
Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1 (6.0.2800.1106) and Outlook Express 6.00.2800.1123 on Windows XP Service Pack 1

Feedback:
Kaveh Mofidi ( Admin (at) SecureTarget [dot] net )
Secure Target Network (Security Consulting/Training Group

Microsoft Outlook PST Exposure

Secure Target Network (Security Advisory August 31, 2003)

Topic: Microsoft Outlook PST Exposure
Discovery Date: August 28, 2003
Original Advisory
External: Zone-h, Security Tracker, openwall, Full-Disclosure
Affected applications and platforms:
All versions of Outlook on any Windows platform

Introduction:
everyone work with .pst files, storing and managing his/her Outlook Data transparently under Microsoft Outlook. A default folder takes care of these data files at:
%windrive%\Documents and Settings\User Profile\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\outlook
And all of your data may encrypt and maintain as outlook.pst (or archive.pst when you just archive your old data).
When you add something to your outlook items (appointments & meetings, tasks, notes, …), your data file probably increases in size but when you delete some items (any size, large or small piece of data), the data do lost from your eyes but usually, does not erase from .pst files.

Exploit:
As you can probably see, this may effect in a wide range of exposure attacks; no escalation of privileges or any other system compromise directly happen. So, anybody with physical access to your computer would be the reader of your Outlook Items (any task, appointment and …) and any private information there.
By the way, this may lead to a worth situation, when you just restore a backed up copy of these .pst files and try to recover your lost data, but there is something different in backups, because you didn’t copy a refreshed one.

Workaround:
the easiest way to work around this vulnerability is physical security countermeasures but for your backups, try to “compact” items before backing up:
1. Fileàfolderàproperties of “your desired folder with data files”àGeneral tabàAdvancedàCompact Now
2. FileàData File ManagementàsettingsàCompact Now

Tested on:
Outlook 2000 SP3 (9.0.0.6627) on Windows 2000 SP4
Outlook 2002 (10.2627.2625) on Windows XP Professional SP1

Feedback:
Kaveh Mofidi ( Admin (at) SecureTarget [dot] net )
SECURE TARGET, Cyber Security Research


Affected applications and platforms:
All versions of Outlook on any Windows platform

Introduction:
everyone work with .pst files, storing and managing his/her Outlook Data transparently under Microsoft Outlook. A default folder takes care of these data files at:
%windrive%\Documents and Settings\User Profile\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\outlook
And all of your data may encrypt and maintain as outlook.pst (or archive.pst when you just archive your old data).
When you add something to your outlook items (appointments & meetings, tasks, notes, …), your data file probably increases in size but when you delete some items (any size, large or small piece of data), the data do lost from your eyes but usually, does not erase from .pst files.

Exploit:
As you can probably see, this may effect in a wide range of exposure attacks; no escalation of privileges or any other system compromise directly happen. So, anybody with physical access to your computer would be the reader of your Outlook Items (any task, appointment and …) and any private information there.
By the way, this may lead to a worth situation, when you just restore a backed up copy of these .pst files and try to recover your lost data, but there is something different in backups, because you didn’t copy a refreshed one.

Workaround:
the easiest way to work around this vulnerability is physical security countermeasures but for your backups, try to “compact” items before backing up:
1. Fileàfolderàproperties of “your desired folder with data files”àGeneral tabàAdvancedàCompact Now
2. FileàData File ManagementàsettingsàCompact Now

Tested on:
Outlook 2000 SP3 (9.0.0.6627) on Windows 2000 SP4
Outlook 2002 (10.2627.2625) on Windows XP Professional SP1

Feedback:
Kaveh Mofidi ( Admin (at) SecureTarget [dot] net )
SECURE TARGET, Cyber Security Research

Recycle Bin Unavailability of Service

Secure Target Network (Security Advisory July 24, 2003)

Topic: Recycle Bin Unavailability of Service
Discovery Date: July 24, 2003
Original Advisory
External: VulnDiscuss, List, openwall

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Hash: SHA1

Secure Target Network (Security Advisory August 04, 2003)
Topic: Recycle Bin Unavailability of Service
Discovery date: July 24, 2003

Affected applications and platforms:
Windows XP Service Pack 1

Not affected applications and platforms:
Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 (and may others)

Introduction:
I’m sure this is related to security issues because it gets in touch
with availability. So, you may want to explore some places with your
“Windows Explorer” or “My Computer” from else where. That’s make no
sense to you but ever doing exploring from “Recycle Bin” to anywhere
else?
You can’t do this and this is a kind of Unavailability!
When you clicked on “Recycle Bin” on any address bar, the word become
highlighted and when you trying to type a path, the words and phrases
you typed, turn to “Recycle Bin”. This way, you cannot change
MANUALLY to any desired location from “Recycle Bin”.

Exploit:
There’s no exploit for this misbehavior but you would be aware of
unavailability this situation brings to your desktop because some day
may you have not any mouse.

Workaround:
This involved with Windows XP GUI behavior and may fix in future but
if you want workaround that, just copy and paste you desire path and
press “ENTER” as fast as possible.

Tested on:
Windows XP Service Pack 1
Windows 2000 Service Pack 3

Feedback:
Kaveh Mofidi (Admin@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx)
Secure Target Network (Security Consulting Group)
HTTP://SECURETARGET.NET

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Recycle Bin Unavailability of Service

Secure Target Network (Security Advisory August 04, 2003)

Topic: Recycle Bin Unavailability of Service
Discovery date: July 24, 2003
External: Neohapsis, Full-Disclosure, Security Corporation

Affected applications and platforms:
Windows XP Service Pack 1
Not affected applications and platforms:
Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 (and may others)

Introduction:
I’m sure this is related to security issues because it gets in touch with availability. So, you may want to explore some places with your “Windows Explorer” or “My Computer” from else where. That’s make no sense to you but ever doing exploring from “Recycle Bin” to anywhere else?
You can’t do this and this is a kind of Unavailability!
When you clicked on “Recycle Bin” on any address bar, the word become highlighted and when you trying to type a path, the words and phrases you typed, turn to “Recycle Bin”. This way, you cannot change MANUALLY to any desired location from “Recycle Bin”.

Exploit:
There’s no exploit for this misbehavior but you would be aware of unavailability this situation brings to your desktop because some day may you have not any mouse.

Workaround:
This involved with Windows XP GUI behavior and may fix in future but if you want workaround that, just copy and paste you desire path and press “ENTER” as fast as possible.

Tested on:
Windows XP Service Pack 1
Windows 2000 Service Pack 3

Feedback:
Kaveh Mofidi ( Admin (at) SecureTarget [dot] net )
SECURE TARGET, Cyber Security Research

Secure Target Network (Security Advisory October 27, 2002)

Topic: OE DBX Exposure
Discovery date: October 02, 2002
Discovered by: Kaveh Mofidi
External: Security Tracker, Bugtraq, Secunia
Affected applications and platforms:
All versions of Outlook Express on any Windows platform

Introduction
You already worked with .dbx files, storing and managing your messages under OE. A default folder takes care of them:
%windrive%\Documents and Settings\User Profile\Local Settings\Application Data\Identities\{Class ID}\Microsoft\Outlook Express
All of your messages will give named by their folders and all folders are defined at Folders.dbx file.
When you delete your messages, they move on Deleted Items.dbx (Deleted Items folder), so when you exit from OE, they must gone but this isn’t happening.
Even when you choose “Empty messages from the ‘Deleted Items’ folder on exit” they remain in both yourfolder.dbx and Deleted Items.dbx files.

Exploit
As you can probably see, this may effect in a wide range of exposure attacks; no escalation of privileges or any other system compromise directly happen. So, anybody with physical access to your computer would be the reader of your email messages and any private information there.

Workaround
Manipulating messages and folders containing them may change the way OE refresh its operations but also may lead to leaving more and more DBX files exposed. The only solution to this issue is to deleting the whole target folder.

Tested on
Outlook Express 6.0.2600.0000 on Windows XP
Outlook Express 6.0.2600.0000 and 6.0.2800.1106 on Windows 2000 SP3

Feedback
Kaveh Mofidi ( Admin (at) SecureTarget [dot] net )
SECURE TARGET, Cyber Security Research

New Vulnerability Disclosure Policy

Effective today March 20, 2002, SECURE TARGET will be following a new policy in regards to the disclosure of vulnerability information:

All vulnerabilities discovered by SECURE TARGET or any member of the entity including myself shall will be kept private during discovery and even after initial submission to vendors, unless otherwise explicitly considered harmless with no serious threat or active exploitation.

This policy makes the primary policy “Full disclosure of vulnerability information” ineffective immediately and SECURE TARGET will no longer support disclosure of vulnerabilities as a proactive countermeasure to malicious hacking. We no longer believe in full-disclosure of vulnerabilities as a way of defending against malicious hackers, or strengthening security community. Disclosure of computer security vulnerabilities never made us stronger against hacker community. They maliciously use information to attack networks and users promptly, but the security community never uses this information fast enough to actively mitigate the root causes, so the logic simply does not work.

All the articles publishing from today shall follow the new principle.

SECURE TARGET Anti-Piracy Policy

at SECURE TARGET we ban Software Piracy and we consider it a cyber crime:

  1. SECURE TARGET spreads the words against software piracy, we do not support using of any unpaid commercial software, or without explicit written permission of author.
  2. SECURE TARGET encourage not to use any type of pirated software, warez, cracks, keygens or any other kind of illegal copied software at all.
  3. There is a lot of professional free software applications which probably cover almost all of our needs if one’s cannot afford paying for commercial software.
  4. SECURE TARGET does not accept services or goods from/to people who use pirated licenses: i.e. hostings, gaming platforms, developers…
  5. We respect production of software and there is no exception to software piracy regardless of country or purpose.