Mac OS X Proof Of Concept Exploit Code Published - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Infrastructure // PC & Servers
News
3/27/2009
04:59 PM
Connect Directly
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Mac OS X Proof Of Concept Exploit Code Published

The software has the ability to create a new system volume, call to some OS functions, and change the user ID, without administrative privileges.

Proof-of-concept exploit code has been posted online for six kernel vulnerabilities, five of which affect Mac OS X 10.5.6, the most current version of Apple's operating system software.

The vulnerabilities were discussed at CanSecWest 2009 last week during a talk about security flaws in the FreeBSD, Mac OS X, and Solaris kernels by security researchers Christer Oberg and Neil Kettle of Convergent Network Solutions.

One of them, a local kernel root exploit in FreeBSD 7.0/7.1, has been patched.

The five that affect Mac OS X, which uses the Mach kernel and incorporates portions of FreeBSD Unix, remain unpatched.

In an e-mail, Kettle explained that the vulnerabilities exploited were not disclosed to Apple when they were found and remained private until they were published to Milw0rm.com on Monday. He said no one has yet complained about the disclosure of the vulnerabilities, noting that in his experience, kernel bugs are not as serious as other vulnerabilities. "We wanted to show how easy it still is to break production kernels in well-used operating systems," he said.

Inaki Urzay, CTO of Panda Security, said the proof-of-concept code isn't an immediate threat but that it could be in the future. "The vulnerabilities are proofs of concept that demonstrate the code can take control of a machine, either via creating a privilege escalation modifying the users or launching DoS local attacks against the PC," he said in an e-mail. "The proof of concept code has the ability to create a new system volume, call to some OS functions, change the user ID, and so on, without administrative privileges."

The PoC code is designated as follows: 1) Mac OS X xnu <= 1228.3.13 (zip-notify) Remote Kernel Overflow PoC; 2) Mac OS X xnu <= 1228.3.13 (macfsstat) Local Kernel Memory Leak/DoS; 3) Mac OS X xnu <= 1228.3.13 (profil) Kernel Memory Leak/DoS PoC; 4) Mac OS X xnu <=1228.x (vfssysctl) Local Kernel DoS PoC; and 5) Mac OS X xnu <= 1228.x (hfs-fcntl) Local Kernel Root Exploit.

Kettle offered the following explanations for the five exploits:

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Previous
1 of 2
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
InformationWeek Is Getting an Upgrade!

Find out more about our plans to improve the look, functionality, and performance of the InformationWeek site in the coming months.

Slideshows
11 Things IT Professionals Wish They Knew Earlier in Their Careers
Lisa Morgan, Freelance Writer,  4/6/2021
News
Time to Shift Your Job Search Out of Neutral
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  3/31/2021
Commentary
Does Identity Hinder Hybrid-Cloud and Multi-Cloud Adoption?
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  4/1/2021
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Successful Strategies for Digital Transformation
Download this report to learn about the latest technologies and best practices or ensuring a successful transition from outdated business transformation tactics.
Slideshows
Flash Poll