Feeds

Anti-virus vendor trio plug website flaws

XSS marks the spot

SANS - Survey on application security programs

White-hat hackers have uncovered vulnerabilities on the websites of anti-virus firms that created a phishing risk.

Cross-site scripting (XSS) bugs of varying severity were found on the websites of Symantec (here), Eset (here) and Panda Security (here) by Team Elite, the white-hat hackers who discovered the flaws. We notified all three firms of the issue and all three responded by plugging the flaws in good time.

Coding errors that give rise to cross-site scripting flaws are endemic in web development. This class of vulnerability might, for example, allow a hacker to present content from third-party sites (pop-ups, malicious scripts etc.) as if it came from a site a surfer was trying to visit and that site alone. As such these flaws are very handy for phishing attacks that attempt to trick the unwary into handing over their credentials to untrusted sites.

A XSS flaw on Twitter's website was exploited by the infamous onMouseover worm last month, a point security firms were jumping over themselves to comment on. The XSS flaws on anti-virus firms websites were not exploited and no harm was done.

Nonetheless Symantec et al should be especially careful to set a good example in web security. That's what these firms sell after all, but experience shows that XSS problems are commonplace even in the information security vendor market.

And because groups such as Team Elite go looking for them these problems regularly get a public airing. Even though there's evidence of miscreants exploiting these vulnerabilities that's no reason to dismiss them, as one Team Elite member explain in an email to El Reg.

"XSS vulnerability is a high level vulnerability which could allow an attacker to steal sensitive data such as login information and other credentials," he said. "I can assure you that our team does not do such things, we don't hack any websites, we simply deliver the proof of concept, spread the knowledge of existing vulnerability so the companies can correct those bugs for the good of their own."

"I've noticed that all three security vendors have fixed the bugs on their websites, which is very positive," he added. ®

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
NSA denies it knew about and USED Heartbleed encryption flaw for TWO YEARS
Agency forgets it exists to protect communications, not just spy on them
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.