[TKADV2008-007] Linux Kernel SCTP-AUTH API Information Disclosure Vulnerability and NULL Pointer Dereferences Sep 11 2008 09:19PM
Tobias Klein (tk trapkit de)
Please find attached a detailed advisory of the vulnerabilities.

Alternatively, the advisory can also be found at:

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Advisory: Linux Kernel SCTP-AUTH API Information Disclosure

Vulnerability and NULL Pointer Dereferences

Advisory ID: TKADV2008-007

Revision: 1.1

Release Date: 2008/09/09

Last Modified: 2008/09/10

Date Reported: 2008/08/20

Author: Tobias Klein (tk at trapkit.de)

Affected Software: Linux Kernel <=

Remotely Exploitable: No

Locally Exploitable: Yes

Vendor URL: http://www.kernel.org/

Vendor Status: Vendor has released a fixed version

CVE-ID: CVE-2008-3792

Patch development time: 1 day


Vulnerability details:


The Linux Kernel contains an information disclosure vulnerability while

parsing the IOCTL SCTP_HMAC_IDENT. Exploitation of this vulnerability can

allow a local unprivileged attacker to gain access to sensitive data.

Additionally, there are various NULL pointer dereferences in the SCTP-AUTH

API. All of the SCTP-AUTH socket options could cause a kernel panic if the

extension is disabled and the API is envoked. Exploitation of these

vulnerabilities can allow an unprivileged attacker to crash the system

(Denial of Service).


Technical description:


- From source code file: net/sctp/socket.c


SCTP_STATIC int sctp_getsockopt(struct sock *sk, int level, int optname,

char __user *optval, int __user *optlen)


int retval = 0;

int len;


if (get_user(len, optlen)) <-- [1]

return -EFAULT;



retval = sctp_getsockopt_hmac_ident(sk, len, optval, optlen); <-- [2]



[1] The user controlled value of "optlen" is copied into "len"

[2] "len" is used as a parameter for the function



static int sctp_getsockopt_hmac_ident(struct sock *sk, int len,

char __user *optval, int __user *optlen)


struct sctp_hmac_algo_param *hmacs;

__u16 param_len;

hmacs = sctp_sk(sk)->ep->auth_hmacs_list; <-- [3]

param_len = ntohs(hmacs->param_hdr.length); <-- [4]

if (len < param_len) <-- [5]

return -EINVAL;

if (put_user(len, optlen))

return -EFAULT;

if (copy_to_user(optval, hmacs->hmac_ids, len)) <-- [6]

return -EFAULT;

return 0;



If SCTP authentication is disabled (net.sctp.auth_enable=0):

[3] "hmacs" gets NULL

[4] "hmacs->param_hdr.length" leads to a NULL pointer dereference

That's one example of the mentioned NULL pointer dereferences in the

SCTP-AUTH API. For more examples see [1].

If SCTP authentication is enabled (net.sctp.auth_enable=1):

[3] "hmacs" gets a valid value

[4] "param_len" gets a valid value

[5] The length check can be easily passed as "len" is user controlled

[6] "len" is a user controlled value, therefore it is possible to control

the number of bytes that get copied back to the user

As "len" isn't validated at all an unprivileged user can read arbitrary

data from memory.




The Linux Kernel maintainers have addressed these vulnerabilities within

version More information can be found from the URLs shown below.







2008/08/20 - Initial notification of kernel maintainers

2008/08/20 - Initial response from kernel maintainers

2008/09/08 - Fix provided

2008/09/09 - Public disclosure




Vulnerabilities found and advisory written by Tobias Klein.




[1] http://git.kernel.org/?p=linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-2.6.26.y.git


[2] http://www.kernel.org/pub/linux/kernel/v2.6/ChangeLog-

[3] http://www.trapkit.de/advisories/TKADV2008-007.txt




Revision 0.1 - Initial draft release to the vendor

Revision 1.0 - Public release

Revision 1.1 - Adjusted patch development time (thanks to Eugene Teo

for pointing this out) and added CVE-ID.




The information within this advisory may change without notice. Use

of this information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS

condition. There are no warranties, implied or express, with regard

to this information. In no event shall the author be liable for any

direct or indirect damages whatsoever arising out of or in connection

with the use or spread of this information. Any use of this

information is at the user's own risk.


PGP Signature Key:



Copyright 2008 Tobias Klein. All rights reserved.






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