Memory-hogging bug offers universal browser crash exploit
DOM and dumber
Security researchers have published details of a security flaw that can crash multiple browsers across multiple platforms.
The flaw works by tricking a browser into allocating huge chunks of memory, behaviour likely to result in a crash.
This isn't in itself a problem if the memory area is defined as read only, but problems arise in the many cases where browsers fail to stop overwrites, leading to two processes trying to get at the same portion of memory at the same time and therefore provoking browser crashes.
The flaw presents a browser crash rather than malware injection risk in all cases. Crashing is most easily achieved on IE, with all versions of Microsoft's browser affected. Versions of Ubuntu running Konquerer might be forced to reboot if exposed to attacks based on the bug because of a memory management failure issue.
By contrast Opera, Chrome and Firefox have all been patched to defend against the flaw - so only older versions of those browsers are affected.
A security advisory from G-Sec, including proof of concept code, explains the issue in far greater depth here. ®