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TUCoPS :: HP/UX :: ciacg011.txt

HP Syslog Vulnerability



                       The U.S. Department of Energy
                    Computer Incident Advisory Capability
                           ___  __ __    _     ___
                          /       |     /_\   /
                          \___  __|__  /   \  \___

                             INFORMATION BULLETIN

                            HP syslog Vulnerability

February 12, 1996 16:00 GMT                                         Number G-11
PROBLEM:       Security vulnerability in syslog(3) subroutine in all releases 
               of HP-UX prior to 10.10.
PLATFORM:      HP 9000 series 300/400s and 700/800s.
DAMAGE:        The vulnerability potentially allows an attacker to gain 
               super-user permissions on the host. 
SOLUTION:      Apply HP vendor Patch.
ASSESSMENT:    This vulnerability is being actively exploited on the Internet.

CIAC has received the following vendor information in response to CIAC
Bulletin G-09a released February 2, 1996. Hewlett-Packard has made available 
patches to fix the syslog(3) vulnerability which is the root cause of the
sendmail/syslog vulnerability. CIAC recommends that these patches be installed.


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Hewlett-Packard recommends that the information in the following
Security Bulletin should be acted upon as soon as possible.  Hewlett-
Packard will not be liable for any consequences to any customer resulting
from customer's failure to fully implement instructions in this Security
Bulletin as soon as possible.

PROBLEM:  Security vulnerability in syslog(3) subroutine in all releases 
          of HP-UX prior to 10.10
PLATFORM: HP 9000 series 300/400s and 700/800s
DAMAGE:   The vulnerability potentially allows an attacker to gain 
          super-user permissions on the host.

SOLUTION: Apply patch PHCO_6595 (series 700/800, HP-UX 10.0, 10.01), or 
                      PHCO_6598 (series 800, HP-UX 9.X), or
                      PHCO_6597 (series 700, HP-UX 9.0X), or
                      PHCO_6224 (series 300/400, HP-UX 9.X), or
                      PHCO_6162 (series 700, HP-UX 9.08 BLS), or
                      PHCO_6161 (series 700, HP-UX 9.09 BLS), or
                      PHCO_6160 (series 700, HP-UX 9.09+ BLS), or
                      PHCO_6157 (series 700, HP-UX 10.09 BLS CMW). 

          All patches are available now, except for the BLS patches,
          which will be available after 29 February, 1996.  Contact your 
          FCO representative for patch availability .

I. Update

   A. Background 
   A recent CERT advisory (CERT CA-95:13) described a vulnerability
   in the syslog(3) subroutine. Widely discussed, the "sendmail" program 
   is one vector for the attack.  Although "sendmail" was used as an 
   example for exploitation, other programs that use syslog(3) could 
   also be exploited.  Hewlett-Packard has chosen to patch the root 
   cause of this problem, which is a buffer-overrun problem.
   The vulnerability allows users to to gain super-user permissions on 
   the host.  If the patch for the appropriate release of HP-UX is 
   properly installed, the vulnerability cannot be exploited.

   It has been found that all HP-UX systems prior to HP-UX 10.10 have 
   this vulnerability.

   B. Fixing the problem

   The vulnerability can be eliminated from releases 9.X and 10.0X of
   HP-UX by applying a patch.  Releases of HP-UX prior to 9.X must
   upgraded to release 9.X or higher to escape the vulnerability,
   which is fixed in the HP-UX 10.10 release.  There are no work-around
   solutions known.

   Hewlett-Packard recommends that all customers concerned with the
   security of their HP-UX systems either apply the appropriate
   patch or change perform the actions described above as soon as 

   Side effects:  None known to date. 

   C. How to Install the Patch (for HP-UX 9.X and 10.X)

   1.  Determine which patch is appropriate for your hardware platform
       and operating system:

                 PHCO_6595 (series 700/800, HP-UX 10.0 & 10.01), or
                 PHCO_6598 (series 800, HP-UX 9.0 & 9.04), or
                 PHCO_6597 (series 700, HP-UX 9.0[1357]), or
                 PHCO_6224 (series 300/400, HP-UX 9.0, 9.01, 9.03 & 9.1), or
                 PHCO_6162 (series 700, HP-UX 9.08 BLS), or
                 PHCO_6161 (series 700, HP-UX 9.09 BLS), or
                 PHCO_6160 (series 700, HP-UX 9.09+ BLS), or
                 PHCO_6157 (series 700, HP-UX 10.09 BLS CMW). 

   2.  Hewlett Packard's HP-UX patches are available via email 
       and World Wide Web

        To obtain a copy of the HP SupportLine email service user's 
        guide, send the following in the TEXT PORTION OF THE MESSAGE to (no Subject is required):

                      send guide

        The users guide explains the process for downloading HP-UX 
        patches via email and other services available.

        World Wide Web service for downloading of patches 
        is available via our URL:

   3.  Apply the patch to your HP-UX system.
        Check for warnings or errors per the patch installation
        instructions.  The logs are: (for 9.X), /tmp/update.log, or for 
        10.X, /var/adm/sw/swinstall.log.  This can be done as follows:

       a. At the shell prompt, type "tail -60 /tmp/update.log | more"
          In 10.X check using "tail -60 /var/adm/sw/swinstall.log | more"
       b. Page through the next three screens via the space bar, 
          looking for WARNING or ERROR messages.

   D. Impact of the patch and workaround

   The patch for HP-UX releases 9.x and 10.x provides a new version of
   libc which fixes the vulnerability.  
   No patches will be available for versions of HP-UX prior to 9.0.
   To protect those affected systems, we recommend upgrading to a 
   currently supported release of HP-UX.

   E. To subscribe to automatically receive future NEW HP Security
       Bulletins from the HP SupportLine mail service via electronic 
       mail, send an email message to:   (no Subject is required)

       Multiple instructions are allowed in the TEXT PORTION OF THE 
       MESSAGE, here are some basic instructions you may want to use:

       To add your name to the subscription list for new security 
       bulletins, send the following in the TEXT PORTION OF THE MESSAGE:

                  subscribe security_info

       To retrieve the index of all HP Security Bulletins issued to 
       date, send the following in the TEXT PORTION OF THE MESSAGE:

                  send security_info_list

       To get a patch matrix of current HP-UX and BLS security
       patches referenced by either Security Bulletin or Platform/OS,
       put the following in the text portion of your message:

                  send hp-ux_patch_matrix

       World Wide Web service for browsing of bulletins 
       is available via our URL:

       Choose "Support news", then under Support news,
       choose "Security Bulletins"

   F. To report new security vulnerabilities, send email to

      Please encrypt exploit information using the security-alert PGP 
      key, available from your local key server, or by sending a 
      message with a subject of 'get key' (no quotes) to



CIAC wishes to acknowledge and thank Hewlett-Packard for providing the
information contained in this bulletin.

CIAC, the Computer Incident Advisory Capability, is the computer security 
incident response team for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the 
National Institute of Health (NIH). CIAC is located at the Lawrence Livermore 
National Laboratory in Livermore, California. CIAC is also a founding member 
of FIRST, the Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams, a global 
organization established to foster cooperation and coordination among computer
security teams worldwide.

CIAC services are available to DOE, DOE contractors, and the NIH. CIAC can be 
contacted at:
    Voice:    +1 510-422-8193
    FAX:      +1 510-423-8002
    STU-III:  +1 510-423-2604

For emergencies and off-hour assistance, DOE, DOE contractor sites, and the 
NIH may contact CIAC 24-hours a day. During off hours (5PM - 8AM PST), call 
the CIAC voice number 510-422-8193 and leave a message, or call 800-759-7243 
(800-SKY-PAGE) to send a Sky Page. CIAC has two Sky Page PIN numbers, the 
primary PIN number, 8550070, is for the CIAC duty person, and the secondary 
PIN number, 8550074 is for the CIAC Project Leader.

Previous CIAC notices, anti-virus software, and other information are 
available from the CIAC Computer Security Archive. 

   World Wide Web:
   Anonymous FTP: (
   Modem access:        +1 (510) 423-4753 (28.8K baud)
                        +1 (510) 423-3331 (28.8K baud)

CIAC has several self-subscribing mailing lists for electronic publications:
1. CIAC-BULLETIN for Advisories, highest priority - time critical information 
   and Bulletins, important computer security information;
2. CIAC-NOTES for Notes, a collection of computer security articles;
3. SPI-ANNOUNCE for official news about Security Profile Inspector (SPI) 
   software updates, new features, distribution and availability;
4. SPI-NOTES, for discussion of problems and solutions regarding the use of 
   SPI products.

Our mailing lists are managed by a public domain software package called 
ListProcessor, which ignores E-mail header subject lines. To subscribe (add 
yourself) to one of our mailing lists, send the following request as the 
E-mail message body, substituting CIAC-BULLETIN, CIAC-NOTES, SPI-ANNOUNCE or 
SPI-NOTES for list-name and valid information for LastName FirstName and 
PhoneNumber when sending

E-mail to
        subscribe list-name LastName, FirstName PhoneNumber
  e.g., subscribe ciac-notes OHara, Scarlett W. 404-555-1212 x36

You will receive an acknowledgment containing address, initial PIN, and 
information on how to change either of them, cancel your subscription, or 
get help. 

PLEASE NOTE: Many users outside of the DOE, ESnet, and NIH computing 
communities receive CIAC bulletins.  If you are not part of these communities,
please contact your agency's response team to report incidents. Your agency's 
team will coordinate with CIAC. The Forum of Incident Response and Security 
Teams (FIRST) is a world-wide organization. A list of FIRST member 
organizations and their constituencies can be obtained by sending email to with an empty subject line and a message body containing 
the line: send first-contacts.

This document was prepared as an account of work sponsored by an agency of the
United States Government. Neither the United States Government nor the
University of California nor any of their employees, makes any warranty,
express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the
accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product,
or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately
owned rights. Reference herein to any specific commercial products, process,
or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not
necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation or favoring by
the United States Government or the University of California. The views and
opinions of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those
of the United States Government or the University of California, and shall not
be used for advertising or product endorsement purposes.

LAST 10 CIAC BULLETINS ISSUED (Previous bulletins available from CIAC)

(G-1)   Telnetd Vulnerability
(G-2)   SunOS 4.1.X Loadmodule Vulnerability
(G-3)   AOLGOLD Trojan Program
(G-4)   X Authentication Vulnerability
(G-5)   HP-UX FTP Vulnerability Bulletin
(G-06A) Win95 Vulnerabilities 
(G-07)  SGI Object Server Vulnerability 
(G-08)  splitvt(1) vulnerability 
(G-09A) Unix sendmail vulnerability 
(G-10A) Winword Macro Viruses 

RECENT CIAC NOTES ISSUED (Previous Notes available from CIAC)

Notes 08 - 4/4/95    A Courtney update
Notes 09 - 4/24/95   More on the "Good Times" virus urban legend
Notes 10 - 6/16/95   PKZ300B Trojan, Logdaemon/FreeBSD, vulnerability
                     in S/Key, EBOLA Virus Hoax, and Caibua Virus
Notes 11 - 7/31/95   Virus Update, Hats Off to Administrators,
                     America On-Line Virus Scare, SPI 3.2.2 Released, 
                     The Die_Hard Virus
Notes 12 - 9/12/95   Securely configuring Public Telnet Services, X Windows, 
                     beta release of Merlin, Microsoft Word Macro Viruses,
                     Allegations of Inappropriate Data Collection in Win95
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