OpenOffice Confirms Buffer Overflow Flaw

By Ryan Naraine  |  Posted 2005-04-12 Print this article Print

Users of the open-source office desktop productivity suite are at risk of code execution attacks. says a patch will be available in the next two days.

The community on Tuesday confirmed the existence of a potentially serious heap-overflow vulnerability in its freely distributed office productivity suite.

The flaw affects OpenOffice Version 1.1.4 and prior and OpenOffice Version 2.0-dev and prior and could put users at risk of code execution attacks. community manager Louis Suarez-Potts confirmed that the vulnerability was discovered in the "StgCompObjStream::Load()" function and occurs when handling a specially crafted ".doc" file.

This could potentially be exploited by attackers to compromise a vulnerable system by convincing a user to open a malicious document with an unpatched application.

"We learned of this March 31 and will be working on it immediately. A patch is ready but it is still going through [quality assurance] testing," Suarez-Potts told The update is expected to be available for general download within two days.

Click here to read more about buffer overflows in Cyrus Mail Server. The office productivity suite is compatible with Microsoft Office files and includes a word processor, spreadsheet, presentation graphics and drawing program, and provides access to popular databases.

To read more about OpenOffice 2.0, click here. is based on the code from an older version of StarOffice that was acquired and made open source by Sun Microsystems Inc.

Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest security news, reviews and analysis. And for insights on security coverage around the Web, take a look at Security Center Editor Larry Seltzers Weblog.

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