Feeds

Firefox spoofing bug raises phishing fears

Basic authentication sucks

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

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. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
SMASH the Bash bug! Red Hat, Apple scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
Ello? ello? ello?: Facebook challenger in DDoS KNOCKOUT
Gets back up again after half an hour though
Desperate VXers enslave FREEZERS in DDoS bot
Updated Spike malware targets Asia
Heatmiser digital thermostat users: For pity's sake, DON'T SWITCH ON the WI-FI
A stranger turns up YOUR heat with default password 1234
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.