A vulnerability has been discovered in Microsoft Windows, which can be exploited by malicious people to compromise a vulnerable system.
The vulnerability is caused due to an input validation error within the Windows shell (shell32.dll) when handling specially crafted URIs with registered URI handlers (e.g. "mailto", "news", "nntp", "snews", "telnet", and "http"). This can be exploited to execute arbitrary commands when a user of certain applications (e.g. Firefox) visits a malicious website or clicks on a link with a specially crafted URI containing a "%" character and ending with a certain extension (e.g. ".bat" or ".cmd").
Successful exploitation using currently known vectors requires that Internet Explorer 7 is installed on the system, though the core problem exists on Windows system with other versions of Internet Explorer as well.
The following applications have been identified as attack vectors on a fully patched Windows XP SP2 and Windows Server 2003 SP2 system:
* Firefox version 18.104.22.168
* Netscape Navigator version 9.0b2
* mIRC version 6.3
* Adobe Reader/Acrobat version 8.1 and prior (when opening PDF files)
* Outlook Express 6 (e.g. when following specially crafted links in VCards)
* Outlook 2000 (e.g. when following specially crafted links in VCards)
Other versions and applications may also be affected.
Provided and/or discovered by: Reported as a Firefox browser vulnerability by:
* Billy (BK) Rios
* Nathan McFeters, Ernst & Young's Advanced Security Center
Firefox not escaping quotes originally discussed by:
* Jesper Johansson
Identification of core Windows problem and additional research by Secunia Research.
Original Advisory: Microsoft (KB943521):
Billy (BK) Rios:
Do you have additional information related to this advisory?
Please provide information about patches, mitigating factors, new versions, exploits, faulty patches, links, and other relevant data by posting comments to this Advisory. You can also send this
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Subject: Microsoft Windows URI Handling Command Execution Vulnerability
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