SOURCE: Cenzic

November 23, 2005 09:27 ET

Cenzic Research Lab Names Top Five Critical Web Application Vulnerabilities for October

Vulnerabilities in Apache, Oracle, PHP, BEA Weblogic and Sun Java Application Server Named Most Serious Risk for Potential Attacks

SANTA CLARA, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 23, 2005 -- Cenzic's Intelligent Analysis (CIA) research lab today named the top five most serious web application vulnerabilities for the month of October. CIA specializes in the continuous research of application vulnerabilities and the development of remediation strategies to assist customers with their web application security needs in enterprise environments.

Cenzic has identified and analyzed the most serious vulnerabilities announced by vendors and other third parties in October. The company's top five includes vulnerabilities in many of today's most widely used business platforms, including Weblogic, Oracle, PHP, Sun Java Application Server and Apache.

Under the auspice of CIA, Cenzic evaluates a wide range of newly discovered application vulnerabilities and prioritizes them based on their severity and potential to impact regulatory compliance, internal policy compliance, information privacy and financial losses. This information is released on a monthly or bi-monthly basis and can be used by enterprises as a first step in addressing the security of custom and commercial web applications.

The CIA team analyzed all web application security vulnerabilities discovered in October, and selected the following for their severity and potential threat to common, widely used software and business environments:

1. Multiple Vulnerabilities Discovered in BEA Weblogic Server

Multiple vulnerabilities were discovered in the BEA Weblogic server that permit denial of service, cross-site scripting, and privilege elevation attacks. BEA issued 22 separate advisories relating to the Weblogic server platform. Among these advisories are various vulnerability types, including weak SSL encryption being used under certain circumstances, denial of service causing server threads to hang, privilege elevation attacks, cross-site scripting, buffer overflows, unauthorized file access and information disclosure, unauthorized access to servlets, and the disclosure of system or user passwords.

Enterprises should consult in the individual advisories to determine if their platform is affected. BEA Weblogic server versions 6.1 SP7, 7.0 SP6, 8.1 SP4, 9.0, and others, are known to be affected by one or more of the advisories.

Enterprises with affected sites should apply the appropriate BEA patches for their server.

2. Sun Java System Application May Disclose Source Code of JSP to Remote Users

An unspecified vulnerability in the following Sun Java Application Server platforms may allow unauthorized users to access the source code of Java Server pages:
--  Standard Edition 7 2004Q2 Update 2 and earlier
--  Standard Edition 7 Update 6 and earlier
--  Enterprise Edition 7 2004Q2 Update 2 and earlier
--  Platform Edition 7 Update 6 and earlier
A disclosure of Java Server Pages source code may allow an attacker to perpetrate theft of proprietary information and/or infer vulnerabilities in the application itself.

Affected sites should apply the vendor supplied fix. Additional information is available at:

3. Multiple Vulnerabilities Found in Oracle Database and Application Server

Multiple vulnerabilities in the Oracle Database and Oracle Application server may allow an attacker to compromise the confidentiality and integrity of data, or conduct denial of service attacks. Versions 8, 8i, 9i, 10g of the Oracle Database Server and Oracle Application server are affected by multiple vulnerabilities, some classified as having a wide impact.

Enterprises can address this vulnerability by applying the appropriate security patches discussed in the Critical Patch Update Advisory for October 2005, found at:

4. Apache Denial of Service via Memory Leak in MPM 'worker.c'


A memory leak in the Apache worker MPM (Multi-Processing Module) may allow an attacker to cause excess system resource consumption by aborting connections. Memory reserved for the connection request is improperly freed for use by other processes, resulting in the eventual inability for the server to handle incoming requests. The vulnerability also affects the IBM HTTP Server which is based on the Apache codebase.

Enterprises can address this vulnerability by applying the appropriate patches provided at the following links:

Apache SVN security Fix:

IBM HTTP Security Fix:

5. Multiple Vulnerabilities Found in PHP Allow Unauthorized Access to Servers

The PHP Hardening project discovered multiple security flaws in versions of PHP. The following vulnerabilities affect PHP 4 versions 4.4.0 and prior, and PHP 5 versions 5.0.5 and prior:
--  PHP File-Upload $GLOBALS Overwrite Vulnerability
--  PHP register_globals Activation Vulnerability in parse_str()
--  PHP Cross Site Scripting (XSS) Vulnerability in phpinfo())
These vulnerabilities can allow an attacker to obtain unauthorized access to a server running an affected version of PHP.

Sites using affected versions should upgrade to a fixed version of PHP as soon as it becomes available. For PHP 4 visit: A fix is still pending for PHP 5.

About Cenzic's Ratings

Cenzic uses a proprietary formula for calculating the severity of vulnerability information. Cenzic's risk metrics are subject to change without notice. The vulnerabilities selected for this alert were chosen due to one or more of the following factors:

--  Origin:   the vulnerability could be exploited by unauthenticated
    remote users;
--  Boundary: the vulnerability would allow privilege escalation upon a
    successful attack;
--  Popularity: the software is widely used or deployed; and
--  Criticality: the vulnerability fits the profile of the critical areas
    identified by OWASP, CSI, SANS, or other sources.
That a particular vulnerability is rated as severe does not imply negligence on part of the author/maintainer/vendor of the affected software.

Cenzic has taken immediate steps to ensure that users of Cenzic Hailstorm are proactively alerted against these and other serious security vulnerabilities. CIA monitors security vulnerability information as it is released to ensure that Hailstorm provides up-to-date, comprehensive, detection and remediation of the most severe application security vulnerabilities.

About Cenzic Intelligent Analysis (CIA) Research

The Cenzic Intelligent Analysis (CIA) team specializes in continuous research into application vulnerabilities and the latest tools and techniques used within the field of application security. The CIA team monitors the latest vulnerabilities and trends affecting application security by tracking Internet newsgroups, forums, mailing lists, and underground websites where vulnerability information is released, In addition to its research focus, CIA experts also perform vulnerability assessment, penetration testing, and security testing.

Cenzic has dedicated experts whose sole job is to perform ongoing research to not only analyze known vulnerabilities but also discover new or undisclosed vulnerabilities in custom, commercial, and open-source applications, and to make this information available to customers and to the community at large in the form of publications and security alerts. Cenzic Hailstorm is updated similar to anti-virus on a regular basis with new vulnerability information to give customers an advantage in staying ahead of new vulnerabilities.

About Cenzic

Cenzic is a leading provider of the next-generation enterprise software and services for automated application security assessment and compliance that allows Fortune 1000 corporations, mid-sized corporations, and government organizations to dramatically improve the security of web applications. Cenzic® Hailstorm®, the most accurate and extensible product in the industry, enables security experts, QA professionals, and developers to work together to assess, analyze, and remediate applications for security vulnerabilities, Hailstorm benefits include reduced security risk and liability, lower development and testing costs, and faster time-to-market. Cenzic ClickToSecure™ service is one of the industry's first solutions to combine the power of an enterprise-class application security assessment product with the flexibility of a managed security service. Cenzic's current focus includes financial services, e-retail, healthcare, and government sectors. For more information, visit

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