[VulnWatch] iDEFENSE Security Advisory 10.11.05: Microsoft Distributed Transaction Controller Packet Relay DoS Vulnerability

From: iDEFENSE Labs (labs-no-reply_at_idefense.com)
Date: 10/11/05

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    Date: Tue, 11 Oct 2005 14:38:34 -0400
    To: <bugtraq@securityfocus.com>, <vulnwatch@vulnwatch.org>, <full-disclosure@lists.grok.org.uk>
    
    

    Microsoft Distributed Transaction Controller Packet Relay DoS
    Vulnerability

    iDEFENSE Security Advisory 10.11.05
    www.idefense.com/application/poi/display?id=319&type=vulnerabilities
    October 11, 2005

    I. BACKGROUND

    The Distributed Transaction Controller provides a method for disparate
    processes to complete atomic transactions. The Transaction Internet
    Protocol (TIP) is one the ways that the DTC service can be accessed.
    This service is part of a standard installation on Windows NT 4.0,
    Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows 2003.

    II. DESCRIPTION

    Remote exploitation of a denial of service vulnerability within various
    versions of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows operating system allows attackers
    to flood systems with connection attempts from legitimate MSDTC
    servers.

    The vulnerability specifically exists because of the functionality in
    the TIP protocol that allows a remote IP address and port number to be
    specified for a connection. The attack can be performed by connecting
    to the MSDTC server and providing an identifier that contains the IP
    address and port number to flood. After a specific sequence of commands,
    the attacker can force an error and cause the DTC service to connect to
    the target IP and port. The DTC service will continue to make
    connections to that host and port, one at a time, per stalled
    transaction.

    If the target host and port provides anything other than a certain set
    of response messages to the IDENTIFY request on the connection, the DTC
    service will disconnect and then reconnect to the service. The attacker
    can keep submitting new transactions to the DTC service, increasing the
    total number of connections made to the target.

    III. ANALYSIS

    Successful exploitation of this vulnerability could allow an attacker to
    proxy a denial of service attack through a MSDTC server that they do
    not otherwise have access to. An attacker could easily scan public IP
    ranges and find servers with TIP enabled and then force them to flood a
    target with repeated connections attempts.

    This attack can also be used to cause a DoS on the MSDTC server itself
    by specifying a loopback address with port 445. This service should not
    be exposed to public networks, thus mitigating the risk of this
    vulnerability.

    IV. DETECTION

    iDEFENSE has confirmed the existence and exploitability of this
    vulnerability in Microsoft Windows 2000 SP4. All versions of Microsoft
    Windows with the vulnerable service running are suspected vulnerable.

    V. WORKAROUND

    iDEFENSE is currently unaware of any workarounds for this issue.

    VI. VENDOR RESPONSE

    The vendor security advisory and appropriate patches are available at:

       http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/Bulletin/MS05-051.mspx

    VII. CVE INFORMATION

    The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the
    name CAN-2005-1980 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in
    the CVE list (http://cve.mitre.org), which standardizes names for
    security problems.

    VIII. DISCLOSURE TIMELINE

    03/23/2005 Initial vendor notification
    03/23/2005 Initial vendor response
    10/11/2005 Coordinated public disclosure

    IX. CREDIT

    The discoverer of this vulnerability wishes to remain anonymous.

    Get paid for vulnerability research
    http://www.idefense.com/poi/teams/vcp.jsp

    Free tools, research and upcoming events
    http://labs.idefense.com

    X. LEGAL NOTICES

    Copyright (c) 2005 iDEFENSE, Inc.

    Permission is granted for the redistribution of this alert
    electronically. It may not be edited in any way without the express
    written consent of iDEFENSE. If you wish to reprint the whole or any
    part of this alert in any other medium other than electronically, please
    email customerservice@idefense.com for permission.

    Disclaimer: The information in the advisory is believed to be accurate
    at the time of publishing based on currently available information. Use
    of the information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS condition.
    There are no warranties with regard to this information. Neither the
    author nor the publisher accepts any liability for any direct, indirect,
    or consequential loss or damage arising from use of, or reliance on,
    this information.


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