Feeds

Firefox spoofing bug raises phishing fears

Basic authentication sucks

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Flaws in the way the latest version of Mozilla Firefox presents authentication dialog boxes leave the door open for cybercrooks to trick users into handing over login credentials, a leading security researcher warns.

The spoofing weakness - discovered by Israeli security researcher Aviv Raff - involves a failure by the open source browser to sanitise single quotation marks and spaces in the "realm" value of an authentication header.

"This makes it possible for an attacker to create a specially crafted Realm value which will look as if the authentication dialog came from a trusted site," Raff explained.

Exploitation of the bug might involve embedding a rigged image on a MySpace page that would pose as a log-on dialog to Amazon.com, for example, while actually sending data to systems controlled by hackers. Alternatively, a hacker might attempt to trick users into visiting a maliciously constructed web page featuring a link to a trusted website. If a victim clicks on the link, the trusted web page will be opened in a new window. Meanwhile, in the background, a script will be executed to redirect the newly opened window to the attacker's web server, returning the specially crafted basic authentication response.

Firefox 2.0.0.11 is vulnerable to the issue, according to Raff. Previous versions of the popular open source browser may also be flawed.

Raff has posted an advisory explaining the vulnerability and its possible misuse in phishing attacks. The advisory links to a video illustrating the exploit, also created by Raff, that shows the misuse of the flaw to spoof Google Checkout. A low-resolution version of the video (as below) has been posted onto YouTube.

Mozilla researchers are investigating the issue. Pending the availability of a fix Raff, who's previously discovered vulnerabilities in Google's Toolbar and Apple's Safari web browser, advises users of the open source browser to avoid providing username and password information to sites displaying the dialog. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
14 antivirus apps found to have security problems
Vendors just don't care, says researcher, after finding basic boo-boos in security software
Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu
Just slapping a patched OpenSSL on a machine ain't going to cut it, we're told
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers
Corporate raiders Comment Crew fingered for attacks
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
Four fake Google haxbots hit YOUR WEBSITE every day
Goog the perfect ruse to slip into SEO orfice
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.