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IBM Lotus Notes 8.5 RSS Widget Privilege Escalation

IBM Lotus Notes 8.5 RSS Widget Privilege Escalation
Posted Sep 10, 2009
Authored by Marc Ruef | Site scip.ch

IBM Lotus Notes version 8.5 suffers from a RSS widget privilege escalation vulnerability.

tags | advisory
MD5 | fea8540009f0d77cf7dab6c4c53a98b8

IBM Lotus Notes 8.5 RSS Widget Privilege Escalation

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IBM Lotus Notes 8.5 RSS Widget Privilege Escalation

scip AG Vulnerability ID 4021 (09/08/2009)
http://www.scip.ch/?vuldb.4021

I. INTRODUCTION

Lotus Notes is a client-server, collaborative application developed and
sold by IBM Software Group.

More information is available on the official product web site at the
following URL:

http://www.ibm.com/software/lotus/products/notes/

II. DESCRIPTION

Marc Ruef at scip AG found a design vulnerability in the current Release
8.5.

The product provides some widgets which can be added and enabled by the
user. One of those widgets provide a simple RSS reader.

This reader downloads the RSS file, extracts the items and saves them
locally as HTML files.

The interpretation and display of the RSS items is handled by the
Internet Explorer regarding the applied security zone.

III. EXPLOITATION

No exploitation is required. A malicious RSS feed may contain script
data or embedded objects.

IV. IMPACT

The RSS items are handled like web documents which introduces the
possibility of running script code or to embed multimedia objects (e.g.
Flash or movies).

Because locally saved files run in the Local Zone of the Internet
Explorer some privilege escalation is possible.

V. DETECTION

It may be possible to identify malicious RSS feeds if they contain
script code or embedded objects.

VI. SOLUTION

IBM has been informed immediately. They are able to address this
vulnerability with a hotfix.

VII. VENDOR RESPONSE

The vendor verified the existence of the issue and addressed it as soon
as possible with a hotfix. Unfortunately most of the communication
bypassed us and were forced to ask for the current status several times.
Our last request of the current status at 08/24/2009 were unanswered.

VIII. SOURCES

scip AG - Security Consulting Information Process (german)
http://www.scip.ch/

scip AG - Vulnerability Database (german)
http://www.scip.ch/?vuldb.4021

computec.ch Document Database (german)
http://www.computec.ch/download.php

IX. DISCLOSURE TIMELINE

2009/04/07 Identification of the vulnerability.
2009/04/23 Notification of IBM via the customer.
2009/04/23 Technical knowhow exchange between scip AG/IBM.
2009/06/05 Asking for current status by scip AG. (no answer)
2009/07/09 Asking for current status by scip AG.
2009/07/09 Reply with current status and assigned PMR.
2009/08/24 Asking for current status by scip AG. (no answer)
2009/09/08 Public disclosure of the advisory.

X. CREDITS

The vulnerabilities were discovered by Marc Ruef.

Marc Ruef, scip AG, Zuerich, Switzerland
maru-at-scip.ch
http://www.scip.ch

A1. LEGAL NOTICES

Copyright (c) 2002-2009 scip AG, Switzerland.

Permission is granted for the re-distribution of this alert. It may not
be edited in any way without permission of scip AG.

The information in the advisory is believed to be accurate at the time
of publishing based on currently available information. There are no
warranties with regard to this information. Neither the author nor the
publisher accepts any liability for any direct, indirect or
consequential loss or damage from use of or reliance on this advisory.
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