‫ Critical cURL library flaw could expose many apps to hackers

ID: IRCNE2013021754
Date: 2013-02-09
 
According to "computerworld", a critical buffer overflow vulnerability patched this week in the widely used open-source cURL library (libcurl) has the potential to expose a large number of applications and systems to remote code execution attacks.
CURL is a cross-platform command line tool and library for transferring data using URL (uniform resource locator) syntax. It supports a wide range of protocols including HTTP, HTTPS, IMAP, IMAPS, LDAP, LDAPS, POP3, POP3S, DICT, FILE, FTP, FTPS, Gopher, RTMP, RTSP, SCP, SFTP, SMTP, SMTPS, Telnet and TFTP.
The vulnerability can be exploited when a program that uses libcurl or the cURL command line tool communicates with a malicious server over the POP3, SMTP or IMAP protocols, the cURL developers said Wednesday in a security advisory. The flaw is located in the libcurl function that handles SASL DIGEST-MD5 authentication and affects versions 7.26.0 to 7.28.1 of the library, they said.
Libcurl 7.29.0 was released Wednesday to address the flaw. Vulnerability research and management firm Secunia rated the flaw as highly critical. "Successful exploitation may allow execution of arbitrary code but requires tricking a user into connecting to a malicious server," the company said Thursday in a security advisory.
CURL is highly portable and works on Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, Solaris, BSD variants, other UNIX-derived OSes including those for embedded systems, as well as mobile OSes like iOS, Android, BlackBerry Tablet OS and BlackBerry 10 OS.
The library is used by a wide range of desktop, Web and mobile applications. According to the cURL developers it's even used in Internet-connected TV sets and Bluray players, in embedded systems and in games.
Because of the many ways and places where libcurl is used, a lot of systems and applications are likely to remain vulnerable to this vulnerability for some time to come, despite a patch being available.

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