Oracle unauthenticated remote system compromise (#NISR16022003a)

From: NGSSoftware Insight Security Research (nisr@NEXTGENSS.COM)
Date: 02/17/03

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    Date:         Mon, 17 Feb 2003 14:09:56 -0800
    From: NGSSoftware Insight Security Research <nisr@NEXTGENSS.COM>

    NGSSoftware Insight Security Research Advisory

    Name: Oracle unauthenticated remote system compromise
    Systems Affected: All platforms; Oracle9i Database Release 2, 9i Release 1,
    8i, 8.1.7, 8.0.6
    Severity: Critical Risk
    Category: Remote System Buffer Overrun
    Vendor URL:
    Author: Mark Litchfield (
    Date: 16th February 2003
    Advisory number: #NISR16022003a

    Oracle is the leader in the database market with a 54% market share lead
    under ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning). The database server is vulnerable
    to a remotely exploitable buffer overflow vulnerability. What exacerbates
    this problem is that no valid User ID or password is required by an

    There is a remotely exploitable buffer overflow vulnerability in the
    authentication process with the Oracle Database Server. By supplying an
    overly long username when attempting to log onto the database server an
    attacker can overflow a stack based buffer overwriting the saved return
    address. Any arbitrary code supplied by an attacker would execute with the
    same privileges as the user running the service; this account is typically
    "Oracle" on linux/unix based platforms and Local System on Windows based
    operating systems such as NT/2000/XP. As such this allows for a complete
    compromise of the data stored in the database and possibly a complete
    compromise of the operating system. As most client applications for Oracle
    will tuncate the length of the username that can be supplied to the database
    an attacker would need to write their own Oracle "Authenticator" to exploit
    this issue. That said, NGSSoftware has found one client application that
    will allow longer usernames so to test if you are vulnerable to this issue,
    use the LOADPSP utility usually found in "bin" directory found under the
    OracleHomeInstallDirectory. On Windows, for example, run:

    C:\ora9ias\BIN>loadpsp -name -user LONGUSERNAME/tiger@iasdb myfile

    Fix Information
    NGSSoftware alerted Oracle to this vulnerability on 30th September 2002.
    Oracle has reviewed the code and created a patch which is available from:

    NGSSoftware advise Oracle database customers to review and install the patch
    as a matter of urgency.

    A check for these issues has been added to NGSSQuirreL for Oracle, a
    comprehensive automated vulnerability assessment tool for Oracle Database
    Servers of which more information is available from the NGSSite

    It is further recommend that Oracle DBAs have their network/firewall
    administrators ensure that the database server is protected from Internet
    sourced traffic.

    Further Information
    For further information about the scope and effects of buffer overflows,
    please see

    About NGSSoftware
    NGSSoftware design, research and develop intelligent, advanced application
    security assessment scanners. Based in the United Kingdom, NGSSoftware have
    offices in the South of London and the East Coast of Scotland. NGSSoftware's
    sister company NGSConsulting, offers best of breed security consulting
    services, specialising in application, host and network security

    Telephone +44 208 401 0070
    Fax +44 208 401 0076

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