Feeds

Phishing with Google Desktop

IE CSS exposes all. Again

The essential guide to IT transformation

It's nice to see Microsoft and Google's respective technologies working in tandem - but not so nice to see it used to expose data on your own hard disk to a malicious website operator.

Security researcher Matan Gillon has published a proof-of-concept flaw that exploits Google Desktop, the search software that runs on a local PC, and Internet Explorer 6.

The principal culprit, once again, is Microsoft's lax and inconsistent implementation of Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) in Internet Explorer. A web site can inject code into a page which allows it to execute on a remote machine.

"All an attacker has to do is lure a user to a malicious web page. Thousands of web sites can be exploited and there isn't a simple solution against this attack at least until IE is fixed. That means millions of IE users are affected by this design flaw," writes Gillon.

Opera and FireFox users are safe.

However this particular flaw wouldn't have been possible without careless programming by Google, which amazingly, fails to obey the Google Desktop security model on its own site.

Gillon discovered that on certain pages, such as Google News, it was easy to extract the security key that the local copy of Google Desktop needs to permit queries to be executed.

"This feature has been in IE at least since IE 6 came out," writes a sarcastic Slashdot member.

"That means Microsoft is again leading the field when it comes to AJAX and Web2.0 products."

The weight of responsibility for this flaw falls on Microsoft. But Google shares some blame too, for failing to take the integrity of your personal data seriously. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Germany 'accidentally' snooped on John Kerry and Hillary Clinton
Dragnet surveillance picks up EVERYTHING, USA, m'kay?
Linux kernel devs made to finger their dongles before contributing code
Two-factor auth enabled for Kernel.org repositories
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.