[Marxism] Exploit code chases two Firefox flaws

Mike Friedman mikedf at mail.amnh.org
Mon May 9 18:10:57 MDT 2005

Exploit code chases two Firefox flaws
By Dawn Kawamoto, CNET News.com
Published on ZDNet News: May 9, 2005, 8:14 AM PT

Two vulnerabilities in the popular Firefox browser have been rated 
"extremely critical" because exploit code is now available to take 
advantage of them.

The cross-site scripting and remote system access flaws were discovered in 
Firefox version 1.0.3, but other versions may also be affected, said 
security company Secunia, which issued the ratings Sunday.

The two vulnerabilities, when combined, can be exploited, but no known 
cases have yet emerged where an attacker took advantage of the public 
exploit code.

One flaw involves "IFRAME" JavaScript URLs, which are not properly 
protected from being executed in the context of another URL in the history 

"If you visit a malicious Web site, it can steal cookie information from 
other Web sites you had previously visited," said Thomas Kristensen, 
Secunia's chief technology officer. The attacker could then use that 
information to engage in identity theft or gain access to other 
password-protected sites that the victim visited.

A second vulnerability exists in the IconURL parameter in 
InstallTrigger.install(). Information passed to this parameter is not 
properly verified before it's used, allowing an attacker to gain user 
privileges. This flaw could allow an attacker to gain and escalate user 
privileges on a system.

People who want new extensions or themes need to go to the Mozilla update 
service. These extensions and themes will need to be manually installed.

Since the vulnerabilities were discovered over the weekend, the Mozilla 
Foundation, which owns Firefox, has taken preventive measures.

Mozilla has changed its update Web service and advises people to 
temporarily disable JavaScript.

However, people who download and install the Mozilla software from 
third-party sites are still at risk, Kristensen said.

"The threat still exists but is less critical now," he noted. "People can 
go to third-party sites to install the software, but it's not going to 
happen on as wide a scale as it had with the Mozilla sites." 

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