Apple Patches MacBook Air Hijack Flaw

By Ryan Naraine  |  Posted 2008-04-16

Apple has slapped a Band-Aid on its Safari for Windows browser to cover four vulnerabilities that could lead to code execution, cross-site scripting and URL spoofing attacks.

The Safari 3.1.1 update includes a patch for the flaw the allowed the hijack of a MacBook Air laptop at this year's CanSecWest "PWN to OWN" security contest.

According to Apple's advisory, the CanSecWest bug was a heap buffer overflow in WebKit's handling of JavaScript regular expressions. WebKit is an open-source Web browser engine used by Safari.

"The issue may be triggered via JavaScript when processing regular expressions with large, nested repetition counts. This may lead to an unexpected application termination or arbitrary code execution," Apple warned, crediting contest winner Charlie Miller and TippingPoint Technologies' Zero Day Initiative for reporting the issue.

The Safari update, which is available for Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X (Tiger and Leopard), also provides the following fixes, according to Apple:

CVE-2008-1024 (available for Windows XP or Vista)-"A memory corruption issue exists in Safari's file downloading. By enticing a user to download a file with a maliciously crafted name, an attacker may cause an unexpected application termination or arbitrary code execution. ... This issue does not affect Mac OS X systems."

CVE-2008-1025 (available for Mac OS X , Windows XP or Vista)-"An issue exists in WebKit's handling of URLs containing a colon character in the host name. Opening a maliciously crafted URL may lead to a cross-site scripting attack." The Google Information Security Team is credited with finding this vulnerability.

CVE-2007-2398 (available for Windows XP or Vista)-"A timing issue in Safari 3.1 allows a Web page to change the contents of the address bar without loading the contents of the corresponding page. This could be used to spoof the contents of a legitimate site, allowing user credentials or other information to be gathered. This issue was addressed in Safari Beta 3.0.2, but reintroduced in Safari 3.1."

Rocket Fuel