TUCoPS :: HP/UX :: b06-1314.htm

HP-UX usermod(1M) Local Unauthorized Access.
HPSBUX02102 SSRT051078 rev.2 - HP-UX usermod(1M) Local Unauthorized Access.
HPSBUX02102 SSRT051078 rev.2 - HP-UX usermod(1M) Local Unauthorized Access.

Hash: SHA1


Document ID: c00614838
Version: 2

HPSBUX02102 SSRT051078 rev.2 - HP-UX usermod(1M) Local
Unauthorized Access.

NOTICE: The information in this Security Bulletin should be acted
upon as soon as possible.

Release Date: 2006-03-13
Last Updated: 2006-03-23

Potential Security Impact: Local unauthorized access to user and
system files and directories.

Source: Hewlett-Packard Company,
        HP Software Security Response Team


A vulnerability has been identified with certain versions of the
HP-UX usermod(1M) command. A certain combination of options can
result in recursively changing the ownership of all directories
and files under a user's new home directory. This may result in
unauthorized access to these directories and files.

References: none

SUPPORTED SOFTWARE VERSIONS*: ONLY impacted versions are listed.
HP-UX B.11.00, B.11.11, B.11.23


The behavior is present in HP-UX B.11.00, B.11.11, and B.11.23.
For B.11.11, the affected version of usermod(1M) is present only
in these patches: PHCO_29269, PHCO_30275, PHCO_32181.

 ->The -d  option of the command usermod(1M) specifies a new
home directory for the login.
Executing a vulnerable version of usermod(1M) in the following

 -># usermod -d  -u  -m 
 -># usermod -d  -g  -m 

 ->causes the ownership of all files and directories, including
and beneath directory  to be recursively changed to
 ->If the directory  is '/' the system will immediately
become inoperable.
 ->If directory  is an existing directory other than '/' the
change in ownership may not be an issue. If directories or files
under directory  were owned by an account other than
, the affected files or directories may be subject to
unauthorized access.


HP-UX B.11.11
action: install PHCO_33142 or subsequent
Verify file/directory ownership

HP-UX B.11.00
HP-UX B.11.23
action: Verify file/directory ownership



HP has made the following patch available to resolve this issue.
The patch is available from http://itrc.hp.com 

HP-UX B.11.11 - PHCO_33142 or subsequent

Until patches are available for the other affected versions,
usermod(1M) should not be used in the following manner:
 -># usermod -d  -u  -m 


 -># usermod -d  -g  -m 

For B.11.11, the affected version of usermod(1M) is present only
in these patches: PHCO_29269,PHCO_30275, PHCO_32181.
All new patches will only provide a version of usermod(1M) that
does not exhibit the behavior. These patches will not detect any
ownerships that may have been altered by the vulnerable version of
usermod(1M). Customers should verify that file/directory
ownerships have not been altered.

NOTE: The swverify option fix=true can restore altered ownerships
for software installed by swinstall.
This Security Bulletin will be revised as other patches become


B.11.11 - install PHCO_33142 or subsequent.
B.11.00 and B.11.23 - Avoid using the usermod(1M) command as
described above.


HP-UX Security Patch Check: Security Patch Check revision B.02.00
analyzes all HP-issued Security Bulletins to provide a subset of
recommended actions that potentially affect a specific HP-UX
system. For more information:

HISTORY: Version: 1 (rev.1) 15 March 2006 Initial release
Version: 2 (rev.2) 23 March 2006 clarified command syntax

Support: For further information, contact normal HP Services
support channel.

Report: To report a potential security vulnerability with any HP
supported product, send Email to: security-alert@hp.com. It is 
strongly recommended that security related information being
communicated to HP be encrypted using PGP, especially exploit
information.  To get the security-alert PGP key, please send an
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To: security-alert@hp.com 
  Subject: get key

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* The Software Product Category that this Security Bulletin
relates to is represented by the 5th and 6th characters of the
Bulletin number in the title:

    GN = HP General SW,
    MA = HP Management Agents,
    MI = Misc. 3rd party SW,
    MP = HP MPE/iX,
    NS = HP NonStop Servers,
    OV = HP OpenVMS,
    PI = HP Printing & Imaging,
    ST = HP Storage SW,
    TL = HP Trusted Linux,
    TU = HP Tru64 UNIX,
    UX = HP-UX,
    VV = HP Virtual Vault

System management and security procedures must be reviewed
frequently to maintain system integrity. HP is continually
reviewing and enhancing the security features of software products
to provide customers with current secure solutions.

"HP is broadly distributing this Security Bulletin in order to
bring to the attention of users of the affected HP products the
important security information contained in this Bulletin. HP
recommends that all users determine the applicability of this
information to their individual situations and take appropriate
action. HP does not warrant that this information is necessarily
accurate or complete for all user situations and, consequently, HP
will not be responsible for any damages resulting from user's use
or disregard of the information provided in this Bulletin. To the
extent permitted by law, HP disclaims all warranties, either
express or implied, including the warranties of merchantability
and fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement."

(c)Copyright 2006 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.
Hewlett-Packard Company shall not be liable for technical or
editorial errors or omissions contained herein. The information
provided is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. To the
extent permitted by law, neither HP nor its affiliates,
subcontractors or suppliers will be liable for incidental, special
or consequential damages including downtime cost; lost profits;
damages relating to the procurement of substitute products or
services; or damages for loss of data, or software restoration.
The information in this document is subject to change without
notice. Hewlett-Packard Company and the names of Hewlett-Packard
products referenced herein are trademarks of Hewlett-Packard
Company in the United States and other countries. Other product
and company names mentioned herein may be trademarks of their
respective owners.

Version: PGP 8.1


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