APOP Protocol Insecure MD5 Hash Weakness

Applications that implement the APOP protocol may be vulnerable to a password-hash weakness. This issue occurs because the MD5 hash algorithm fails to properly prevent collisions.

Attackers may exploit this issue in man-in-the-middle attacks to potentially gain access to the first three characters of passwords. This will increase the likelihood of successful brute-force attacks against APOP authentication.

To limit the possibility of successful exploits, applications that implement the APOP protocol should set up safeguards to ensure that message IDs are RFC-compliant.

Mozilla Thunderbird, Evolution, mutt, and fetchmail are reportedly affected by this issue.


 

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