[NT] Opera Web Browser Directory Traversal in Internal URI Protocol
From: SecuriTeam (support_at_securiteam.com)
To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 19 Nov 2003 19:34:37 +0200
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Opera Web Browser Directory Traversal in Internal URI Protocol
Opera Web Browser defines an internal URI Protocol like command called
"opera:". Among other things, it is used to display documentation and help
files for the browser. It has an input validation flaw that enables
This flaw is an aggravating factor when combined with other
vulnerabilities. In this case, it can be combined with the "Opera Skinned"
* Opera version 7.21 and prior
* Opera version 7.22
NOTE: It is assumed that Opera is installed in the default location i.e.,
"c:\program files\opera7" for the purpose of this description. However, a
default install is *not* necessary for exploitation.
"Opera:" is an internal URI protocol-like command used by Opera.
"Internal" because it is not registered as a URI protocol in the Windows
Registry. One of its uses is to display documentation. For instance, to
see help, "opera:/help/" is used. This point to the "C:\Program
Files\Opera7\help" directory on the file system. The html files in this
folder can be accessed through this relative URL, like,
"opera:/help/foo.html". When a local path is requested through "opera:" in
the form of a legal "opera:/help/" URL, it uses the service of the
"file://" protocol. For instance, "opera:/help/" redirects the browser to
"opera:history", "opera:plugins", "opera:cache" and "opera:drives" are
other known uses for this command. Their function is self-explanatory.
"about:" is an alias for "opera:". For instance, "about:history"
translates to "opera:history".
The problem here is that though, using "../" for directory traversal in
the opera: command is not allowed and Opera responds with an "illegal
address" prompt, this can easily be bypassed using "..%5c" or "..%2f" to
break out of the /help/ directory.
For instance, using "opera:/help/..%5c..%5c..%5cwinnt/notepad.exe"
downloads "notepad.exe" from the "winnt" folder.
Exploits that depend on knowing the installation path of Opera are helped
by this vulnerability. The command "opera:/help/" always points to the
"<opera directory>/help/" directory. This can be used as a reference point
for exploits because of the directory traversal. For instance,
"opera:/help/..%5c" points to the Opera Directory.
The exploit attached with the advisories uses this vulnerability for
getting the correct path of the "<opera dir>/profile/" folder for
The vendor, Opera Software, deserves special mention here. S G Masood has
previously read about Opera Soft's promptness in resolving security
vulnerabilities in their products. S G Masood's experience with them is
one of the best S G Masood ever had with any vendor. S G Masood hopes they
continue to maintain their good record even with future security issues.
The information has been provided by <mailto:email@example.com> S G
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