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CWE
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Unquoted Search Path or Element

ID: 428Date: (C)2012-05-14   (M)2017-11-09
Type: weaknessStatus: DRAFT
Abstraction Type: Base





Description

The product uses a search path that contains an unquoted element, in which the element contains whitespace or other separators. This can cause the product to access resources in a parent path.

Extended Description

If a malicious individual has access to the file system, it is possible to elevate privileges by inserting such a file as "C:\Program.exe" to be run by a privileged program making use of WinExec.

Applicable Platforms
Language Class: All
Operating System: Sometimes
Operating System: Windows 2000
Operating System: Sometimes
Operating System: Windows XP
Operating System: Sometimes
Operating System: Windows Vista
Operating System: Rarely
Operating System: Mac OS X

Time Of Introduction

  • Implementation

Related Attack Patterns

Common Consequences

ScopeTechnical ImpactNotes
Confidentiality
Integrity
Availability
 
Execute unauthorized code or commands
 
 

Detection Methods
None

Potential Mitigations

PhaseStrategyDescriptionEffectivenessNotes
Implementation
 
 Properly quote the full search path before executing a program on the system.
 
  
Implementation
 
Input Validation
 
Assume all input is malicious. Use an "accept known good" input validation strategy, i.e., use a whitelist of acceptable inputs that strictly conform to specifications. Reject any input that does not strictly conform to specifications, or transform it into something that does.
When performing input validation, consider all potentially relevant properties, including length, type of input, the full range of acceptable values, missing or extra inputs, syntax, consistency across related fields, and conformance to business rules. As an example of business rule logic, "boat" may be syntactically valid because it only contains alphanumeric characters, but it is not valid if the input is only expected to contain colors such as "red" or "blue."
Do not rely exclusively on looking for malicious or malformed inputs (i.e., do not rely on a blacklist). A blacklist is likely to miss at least one undesirable input, especially if the code's environment changes. This can give attackers enough room to bypass the intended validation. However, blacklists can be useful for detecting potential attacks or determining which inputs are so malformed that they should be rejected outright.
 
  
Implementation
 
Input Validation
 
Inputs should be decoded and canonicalized to the application's current internal representation before being validated (CWE-180). Make sure that the application does not decode the same input twice (CWE-174). Such errors could be used to bypass whitelist validation schemes by introducing dangerous inputs after they have been checked.
 
  

Relationships

Related CWETypeViewChain
CWE-428 ChildOf CWE-893 Category CWE-888  

Demonstrative Examples
None

Observed Examples

  1. CVE-2005-1185 : Small handful of others. Program doesn't quote the "C:\Program Files\" path when calling a program to be executed - or any other path with a directory or file whose name contains a space - so attacker can put a malicious program.exe into C:.
  2. CVE-2005-2938 : CreateProcess() and CreateProcessAsUser() can be misused by applications to allow "program.exe" style attacks in C:
  3. CVE-2000-1128 : Applies to "Common Files" folder, with a malicious common.exe, instead of "Program Files"/program.exe.

For more examples, refer to CVE relations in the bottom box.

White Box Definitions
None

Black Box Definitions
None

Taxynomy Mappings

TaxynomyIdNameFit
PLOVER  Unquoted Search Path or Element
 
 

References:

  1. Mark Dowd John McDonald Justin Schuh .The Art of Software Security Assessment 1st Edition. Addison Wesley. Section:'Chapter 11, "Process Loading", Page 654.'. Published on 2006.

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