Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Attacks/Breaches

10/24/2006
08:25 AM
Connect Directly
Google+
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Zero Day Flaw Found in MySpace

A variant of an XSS vulnerability opens the door for worms, phishing, and port scans via the popular social networking site

A researcher has published proof-of-concept code on a zero-day vulnerability he found on MySpace.com -- and another variation on the cross-site scripting (XSS) theme.

Called XSS fragmentation, the vulnerability consists of multiple chunks, or fragments, of JavaScript malware that can slip by a filter or firewall because individually they don't constitute a security risk. But when they are combined after hitting the site, they can then be dangerous.

XSS fragmentation is rare, but a potentially powerful vulnerability that could be used against community-based sites such as MySpace or Web-based mail systems, security experts say. MySpace in particular is vulnerable because it takes user-supplied content and stores it without adequate filtering, says Jeremiah Grossman, CTO of White Hat Security. An e-commerce site would not be at risk to this type of attack, he says.

XSS in general has become one of the most prevalent targets of online hackers, with many major Websites sporting XSS vulnerabilities. (See Cross-Site Scripting: Attackers' New Favorite Flaw and Hackers Reveal Vulnerable Websites.)

With XSS fragmentation, an attacker could inject the script fragments onto the MySpace user's interests section, such as music and film, according to the proof-of-concept posting by kuza55, the hacker who discovered the vulnerability.

Once the JavaScript fragments get on the site, they assemble and do their dirty work -- dropping a worm, stealing browser history, port-scanning a victim's intranet, or shooting off phishing emails purportedly from MySpace to steal logins and passwords.

"I personally have only seen XSS fragmentation a few times," says hacker Rsnake, founder of the sla.ckers.org site where kuza55 posted the proof-of-concept code. "This isn't that common of an attack, as it generally requires that there be two or more places to inject code on the page."

Interestingly, scanning alone won't detect XSS fragmentation, nor will blacklisting eliminate the threat. White Hat Security's Grossman, whose company runs a vulnerability assessment and management service for Websites, says it takes human intervention to detect such a vulnerability or attack because it's typically targeted at a specific site or organization. Whitelisting -- specifying what data is allowed -- would be a better way to prevent such an attack, he says.

"This attack is pretty involved. Scanning is not going to find it, but human assessment would," he says. "In Web attacks, there's going to be someone sitting behind a browser... You have to match their skillset, and that's where the human assessment part" comes in.

MySpace had not responded to inquiries for this article as of presstime.

— Kelly Jackson Higgins, Senior Editor, Dark Reading

  • WhiteHat Security Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
    More Insights
  • Comments
    Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
    COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
    Dark Reading Staff 9/21/2020
    Cybersecurity Bounces Back, but Talent Still Absent
    Simone Petrella, Chief Executive Officer, CyberVista,  9/16/2020
    Meet the Computer Scientist Who Helped Push for Paper Ballots
    Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  9/16/2020
    Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
    White Papers
    Video
    Cartoon
    Latest Comment: Exactly
    Current Issue
    Special Report: Computing's New Normal
    This special report examines how IT security organizations have adapted to the "new normal" of computing and what the long-term effects will be. Read it and get a unique set of perspectives on issues ranging from new threats & vulnerabilities as a result of remote working to how enterprise security strategy will be affected long term.
    Flash Poll
    How IT Security Organizations are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
    How IT Security Organizations are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
    The COVID-19 pandemic turned the world -- and enterprise computing -- on end. Here's a look at how cybersecurity teams are retrenching their defense strategies, rebuilding their teams, and selecting new technologies to stop the oncoming rise of online attacks.
    Twitter Feed
    Dark Reading - Bug Report
    Bug Report
    Enterprise Vulnerabilities
    From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
    CVE-2020-7734
    PUBLISHED: 2020-09-22
    All versions of package cabot are vulnerable to Cross-site Scripting (XSS) via the Endpoint column.
    CVE-2020-6564
    PUBLISHED: 2020-09-21
    Inappropriate implementation in permissions in Google Chrome prior to 85.0.4183.83 allowed a remote attacker to spoof the contents of a permission dialog via a crafted HTML page.
    CVE-2020-6565
    PUBLISHED: 2020-09-21
    Inappropriate implementation in Omnibox in Google Chrome on iOS prior to 85.0.4183.83 allowed a remote attacker to spoof the contents of the Omnibox (URL bar) via a crafted HTML page.
    CVE-2020-6566
    PUBLISHED: 2020-09-21
    Insufficient policy enforcement in media in Google Chrome prior to 85.0.4183.83 allowed a remote attacker to leak cross-origin data via a crafted HTML page.
    CVE-2020-6567
    PUBLISHED: 2020-09-21
    Insufficient validation of untrusted input in command line handling in Google Chrome on Windows prior to 85.0.4183.83 allowed a remote attacker to bypass navigation restrictions via a crafted HTML page.