Vuln Dev
RE: Next generation malware: Windows Vista's gadget API Sep 14 2007 07:56PM
Roger A. Grimes (roger banneretcs com) (1 replies)
RE: Next generation malware: Windows Vista's gadget API Sep 15 2007 12:55PM
pgut001 cs auckland ac nz (Peter Gutmann) (1 replies)
Re[2]: [Full-disclosure] Next generation malware: Windows Vista's gadget API Sep 16 2007 12:34PM
Thierry Zoller (Thierry Zoller lu) (2 replies)
Re: Re[2]: [Full-disclosure] Next generation malware: Windows Vista's gadget API Sep 17 2007 06:47AM
pgut001 cs auckland ac nz (Peter Gutmann)
Re: [Full-disclosure] Next generation malware: Windows Vista's gadget API Sep 16 2007 03:09PM
Tim Brown (tmb 65535 com)
Firstly, "the sky isn't falling, the risks posed by the gadget API already
existed elsewhere in Windows generally, but this is another new attack
surface without any legacy dependencies". This is my general view on the
gadget API.

On Sunday 16 September 2007 13:34:32 Thierry Zoller wrote:

> PG> No, this is an entirely new level of attack,
> "New level of attack", what makes you believe that?

As I previously stated, unlike Peter I don't consider this a new level of
attack, I'm just a bit surprised that the threat model wasn't examined by
Microsoft a little more closely before they decided to include the gadget
API. Unlike other APIs that Microsoft have released there was no legacy
requirement to include all of the new functionality highlighted in my paper.
Moreover, irrespective of the design decisions how did at least 3 Microsoft
gadgets get through SDL without input validation being tested and the
vulnerabilities.

> PG> because it's moved the dancing
> PG> bunnies problem onto the Windows desktop.
> Huh ? What is different to let's say the southpark worm we saw years
> ago? Or any other normal binary that promised to be a screensaver or
> similar ?

Because it's not just about downloading rogue gadgets. I don't want to
overhype the gadget API - it's just another attack surface after all - but if
you look at all the PoCs so far, the greater risk comes from malware being
injected into 'trusted' gadgets.

> PG> Given what an incredible attack vector they are
> What is incredible in this attack vector ? What is actually new ?
> What is the differnce with the "User downloads screensaver and get's
> owned" attack vector ?

Allowing gadgets - trusted or otherwise - to download and execute arbitrary
parts of the internet becomes a tad more dangerous when you explicitly allow
them access to APIs for reading and write arbitrary files (subject to Vista
ACLs) and executing arbitrary binaries. The process of securing IE has
largely been to remove and mitigate such vectors by which this can occur, so
why reintroduce them in non-legacy code.

Finally, why on earth does the trust model for gadgets consist of full trust
and nothing more. Why not allow gadgets to state in their manifest that for
example they don't need to execute things, won't make use of ActiveX controls
and will only connect to a specific host?

Tim
--
Tim Brown
<mailto:tmb (at) 65535 (dot) com [email concealed]>

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