Feeds

Hacktivist vuln still plagues UN.org

Still lazy after all these years

Seven Steps to Software Security

The official website of the United Nations has yet to fix a vulnerability that more than two years ago allowed hacktivists to replace official content with their own activist messages.

According to Errata Security CEO Rob Graham, the same SQL injection flaw that plagued the site in August of 2007 remains unfixed now. It's invoked by doing nothing more than adding a stray character to the ASP parameter of a un.org link, such as http://www.un.org/apps/news/infocus/sgspeeches/statments_full.asp?statID=10'5.

"Despite the fact a high-school intern can fix the bug in 5 minutes, the bureaucracy means that the organization must spend tens of thousands of dollars to fix the bug," Graham wrote. "The other lesson is that the cost of NOT fixing the bug is low. The UN can simply live with the problem, and clean up after every hack."

As The Register reported in 2007, hacktivists used the bug on the UN's Apache-powered website to replace speeches by Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon with pacifist messages. While that attack appeared to be the work of activist critics of the global organization, it's not a stretch to imagine criminals hacking the site to surreptitiously send visitors to sites that push malicious drive-by exploits.

Messages seeking comment from the UN went unanswered. ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
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
NEW, SINISTER web tracking tech fingerprints your computer by making it draw
Have you been on YouPorn lately, perhaps? White House website?
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Black Hat anti-Tor talk smashed by lawyers' wrecking ball
Unmasking hidden users is too hot for Carnegie-Mellon
Attackers raid SWISS BANKS with DNS and malware bombs
'Retefe' trojan uses clever spin on old attacks to grant total control of bank accounts
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
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.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.