IBM AIX: Locale and BIND fixes on

IBM AIX: Locale and BIND fixes on

Post by advis.. » Tue, 28 Nov 2000 04:00:00

IBM Global Services
Emergency Response Service
For Your Information

27 NOV 2000  13:47 GMT                             ERS-FYI-E01-2000:082.1
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The IBM AIX Security Response Team has posted an e-fix to that is intended to close two
potential security exploits in libc.a until the appropriate APARs are
made available that offer a fully tested, permanent fix. Details are
given below.


Two exploits have been recently identified in IBM's AIX operating system
that compromise
the host systems' reliability and security.

One of these vulnerabilities is a format string exploit present in the
locale subsytem
and is implemented via the attacker's use of setting NLSPATH to point to
his or her
tainted message file that contains a carefully selected set of format
strings that
allow the attacker to gain root privileges. The locale subsystem code is
within libc.a.

The other vulnerability consists of two potential denial-of-service
exploits in BIND
(named). Only a specific range of versions of BIND are affected. The most
recent versions
(above patch level 6) are not affected. Portions of the BIND code are
within libc.a

IBM has issued e-fixes that contain temporary fixes for each of the two
just described. However, the libc.a file in each does not incorporate the
fix for
both of these exploits. Thus, a customer will not be protected from both
exploits using
either of the libc.a libraries. IBM's recommendation (see the README file
in this ftp
directory) was to choose the e-fix for the locale subsystem vulnerability
over that of
the DoS exploits in BIND. The former is a more serious security hole, and
the BIND
problems have not been consistently demonstrated in the BIND version AIX


This e-fix package has a libc.a file that incorporates e-fixes for both
the vulnerabilities
described above. This version of the library is for AIX 4.3 at version
Customers MUST have their systems at this level for the e-fix to work
properly and
avoid serious OS difficulties on their hosts. If you are not at this level
install this e-fix. To upgrade to, install APAR #IY12541.

Customers must download the e-fix for the BIND vulnerabilities first, and
install the
e-fix as instructed in the package README file. Again, see the (other)
README file in this
ftp directory to identify the proper packages.

Then, this package can be used: substitute the libc.a library in this
package for the
one in the /tmp/testnamed (or whatever name for the subdirectory the
customer chooses
under /tmp) directory described in the BIND package instructions, and
repeat the
installation instructions as before for the BIND e-fix. Remember to use a
"victim" machine to test the installation and proper operation of the
e-fix BEFORE
doing the same on an "in-service" box.


The e-fix in this package has not been subjected to full regression
testing for
proper security and functioning of the operating system. Hence, customers
are employing
this e-fix at their own risk. The e-fix is an emergency, temporary patch
only; when the applicable APAR is released for each of the
vulnerabilities, customers are urged to install these APARs.

Version: PGP Personal Privacy 6.5.3

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