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CA-2002-22 Multiple Vulnerabilities in Microsoft SQL Server

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CERT Advisory CA-2002-22 Multiple Vulnerabilities in Microsoft SQL Server

Original release date: July 29, 2002
Last revised: --
Source: CERT/CC

A complete revision history can be found at the end of this file.

Systems Affected

* Microsoft SQL Server 7.0
* Microsoft SQL Server 2000
* Microsoft SQL Server Desktop Engine 2000

Overview

The Microsoft SQL Server contains several serious vulnerabilities that
allow remote attackers to obtain sensitive information, alter database
content, compromise SQL servers, and, in some configurations,
compromise server hosts. These vulnerabilities are public and have
been addressed by Microsoft Security Bulletins, but we believe their
collective severity warrants additional attention.

I. Description

Since December 2001, Microsoft has published eight Microsoft Security
Bulletins regarding more than a dozen vulnerabilities in the Microsoft
SQL Server. This document provides information on the five most
serious of these vulnerabilities; references to the remainder are
provided in Appendix B.

In isolation, many of these vulnerabilities have significant
preconditions that are difficult for an attacker to overcome. However,
when exploited in combination, they allow attackers to gain additional
flexibility and increase their chances for success. In particular, the
privilege escalation vulnerability described in VU#796313 allows an
attacker to weaken the security policy of the SQL server by granting it
the same privileges as the operating system. With full administrative
privileges, a compromised Microsoft SQL Server can be used to take
control of the server host.

The CERT/CC encourages system administrators to take this opportunity
to review the security of their Microsoft SQL servers and to apply the
appropriate patches from the Microsoft bulletins listed in Appendix B.

VU#796313 - Microsoft SQL Server service account registry key has weak
permissions that permit escalation of privileges (CAN-2002-0642)

The Microsoft SQL Server typically runs under a dedicated "service
account" that is defined by system administrators at installation
time. This definition is stored in the Windows registry with
permissions that allow the SQL Server to change the value of the
registry key. As a result, attackers with access to the
"xp_regwrite" extended stored procedure can alter this registry key
and cause the SQL Server to use the LocalSystem account as its
service account.

Upon rebooting the server host or restarting the SQL service, the SQL
Server will run with the full administrative privileges of the
LocalSystem account. This ability allows a remote attacker to submit
SQL queries that can execute any command on the system with the
privileges of the operating system.

VU#225555 - Microsoft SQL Server contains buffer overflow in
pwdencrypt() function (CAN-2002-0624)

The Microsoft SQL Server provides multiple methods for users to
authenticate to SQL databases. When SQL Server Authentication is
used, the username and password of each database user is stored in a
database on the SQL server. When users supply a password to the
server using this method, a function named pwdencrypt() is
responsible for encrypting the user-supplied password so that it can
be compared to the encrypted password stored on the SQL server.

There is a buffer overflow in pwdencrypt() that allows remote
attackers to execute arbitrary code on the SQL server by supplying a
crafted password value. Successful exploitation of this
vulnerability requires knowledge of a valid username and will cause
the supplied code to execute with the privileges of the SQL service
account.

VU#627275 - Microsoft SQL Server extended stored procedures contain
buffer overflows (CAN-2002-0154)

Microsoft SQL Server provides a scripting construct known as an
"extended stored procedure" that can execute a collection of server
commands together. Several of the extended stored procedures
included with the Microsoft SQL Server contain buffer overflow
vulnerabilities. These procedures provide increased functionality
for database applications, allowing them to access operating system
or network resources.

Parameters are passed to extended stored procedures via an API that
specifies the actual and maximum length of various parameter data
types. Some of the extended stored procedures fail to adequately
validate the length of input parameters, resulting in stack buffer
overflow conditions.

Since some of the vulnerable procedures are configured by default to
allow public access, it is possible for an unauthenticated attacker
to exploit one or more of these buffer overflows. SQL Server
databases are commonly used in web applications, so the vulnerable
procedures may be accessible via the Internet. Microsoft Security
Bulletin MS02-020 states

An attacker could exploit this vulnerability in one of two ways.
Firstly, the attacker could attempt to load and execute a database
query that calls one of the affected functions. Secondly, if a
web-site or other database front-end were configured to access and
process arbitrary queries, it could be possible for the attacker to
provide inputs that would cause the query to call one of the
functions in question with the appropriate malformed parameters.

VU#399260 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains heap buffer overflow in
SQL Server Resolution Service (CAN-2002-0649)

The SQL Server Resolution Service (SSRS) was introduced in Microsoft
SQL Server 2000 to provide referral services for multiple server
instances running on the same machine. The service listens for
requests on UDP port 1434 and returns the IP address and port number
of the SQL server instance that provides access to the requested
database.

The SSRS contains a heap buffer overflow that allows unauthenticated
remote attackers to execute arbitrary code by sending a crafted
request to port 1434/udp. The code within such a request will be
executed by the server host with the privileges of the SQL Server
service account.

VU#484891 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains stack buffer overflow in
SQL Server Resolution Service (CAN-2002-0649)

The SSRS also contains a stack buffer overflow that allows
unauthenticated remote attackers to execute arbitrary code by sending
a crafted request to port 1434/udp. The code within such a request
will be executed by the server host with the privileges of the SQL
Server service account.

II. Impact

VU#796313 - Microsoft SQL Server service account registry key has weak
permissions that permit escalation of privileges

As a precondition, this vulnerability requires the ability to modify
the SQL service account registry key (for example, via the
"xp_regwrite" extended stored procedure). Attackers must convince an
administrator to grant this access, or they must obtain it by
exploiting one of the vulnerabilities listed in this advisory.

This vulnerability allows attackers to weaken the security policy of
the SQL Server by elevating its privileges and causing it to run in
the LocalSystem security context. As a side effect, it increases the
severity of the other vulnerabilities listed in this advisory and may
enable attackers to compromise the server host as well.

VU#225555 - Microsoft SQL Server contains buffer overflow in
pwdencrypt() function

This vulnerability allows remote attackers with knowledge of a valid
username to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the SQL
service account.

VU#627275 - Microsoft SQL Server extended stored procedures contain
buffer overflows

This vulnerability allows unauthenticated remote attackers to execute
arbitrary code with the privileges of the SQL service account.

VU#399260 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains heap buffer overflow in
SQL Server Resolution Service

This vulnerability allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code
with the privileges of the SQL service account.

VU#484891 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains stack buffer overflow in
SQL Server Resolution Service

This vulnerability allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code
with the privileges of the SQL service account.

III. Solution

Apply a patch from Microsoft

VU#796313 - Microsoft SQL Server service account registry key has weak
permissions that permit escalation of privileges

VU#225555 - Microsoft SQL Server contains buffer overflow in
pwdencrypt() function

Microsoft has published Security Bulletin MS02-034 to address these
vulnerabilities. For more information, please see

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-034.asp

VU#627275 - Microsoft SQL Server extended stored procedures contain
buffer overflows

Microsoft has published Security Bulletin MS02-020 to address this
vulnerability. For more information, please see

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-020.asp

VU#399260 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains heap buffer overflow in
SQL Server Resolution Service

VU#484891 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains stack buffer overflow in
SQL Server Resolution Service

Microsoft has published Security Bulletin MS02-039 to address these
vulnerabilities. For more information, please see

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-039.asp

Block external access to Microsoft SQL Server ports

As a workaround, it is possible to limit exposure to these
vulnerabilities by restricting external access to Microsoft SQL Servers
on ports 1433/tcp, 1433/udp, 1434/tcp, and 1434/udp. Note that
VU#399260 and VU#484891 can be exploited using UDP packets with forged
source addresses that appear to belong to legitimate services, so
system administrators should restrict all incoming packets sent to
1434/udp.

Appendix A. - Vendor Information

This appendix contains information provided by vendors for this
advisory. As vendors report new information to the CERT/CC, we will
update this section and note the changes in our revision history. If a
particular vendor is not listed below, we have not received their
comments.

Appendix B. - CERT Vulnerability Notes sorted by Microsoft Security Bulletin
ID

This appendix contains a list of CERT Vulnerability Notes sorted in
reverse chronological order by their corresponding Microsoft Security
Bulletin IDs. System administrators should use this list to ensure
that each of the patches listed in these bulletins have been applied.

MS02-039 : Buffer Overruns in SQL Server 2000 Resolution Service Could
Enable Code Execution (Q323875)

VU#399260 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains heap buffer
overflow in SQL Server Resolution Service

VU#484891 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains stack buffer
overflow in SQL Server Resolution Service

VU#370308 - Microsoft SQL Server 2000 contains denial-of-service
vulnerability in SQL Server Resolution Service

MS02-038 : Unchecked Buffer in SQL Server 2000 Utilities Could Allow
Code Execution (Q316333)

VU#279323 - Microsoft SQL Server contains buffer overflows in
several Database Consistency Checkers

VU#508387 - Microsoft SQL Server contains SQL injection
vulnerability in replication stored procedures

MS02-035 : SQL Server Installation Process May Leave Passwords on
System (Q263968)

VU#338195 - Microsoft SQL Server installation process leaves
sensitive information on system

MS02-034 : Cumulative Patch for SQL Server (Q316333)

VU#225555 - Microsoft SQL Server contains buffer overflow in
pwdencrypt() function

VU#682620 - Microsoft SQL Server contains buffer overflow in
code used to process "BULK INSERT" queries

VU#796313 - Microsoft SQL Server service account registry key
has weak permissions that permit escalation of privileges

MS02-030 : Unchecked Buffer in SQLXML Could Lead to Code Execution
(Q321911)

VU#811371 - Microsoft SQLXML ISAPI filter vulnerable to buffer
overflow via contenttype parameter

VU#139931 - Microsoft SQLXML HTTP components vulnerable to
cross-site scripting via root parameter

MS02-020 : SQL Extended Procedure Functions Contain Unchecked Buffers
(Q319507)

VU#627275 - Microsoft SQL Server extended stored procedures
contain buffer overflows

MS02-007 : SQL Server Remote Data Source Function Contain Unchecked
Buffers

VU#619707 - Microsoft SQL Server contains buffer overflows in
openrowset and opendatasource macros

MS01-060 : SQL Server Text Formatting Functions Contain Unchecked
Buffers

VU#700575 - Buffer overflows in Microsoft SQL Server 7.0 and SQL
Server 2000

Appendix C. - References

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-007.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-020.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-030.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-034.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-035.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-038.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS02-039.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS01-060.asp
http://support.microsoft.com/support/misc/kblookup.asp?id=Q316333
http://support.microsoft.com/support/misc/kblookup.asp?id=Q319507
http://support.microsoft.com/support/misc/kblookup.asp?id=Q323875
http://www.appsecinc.com/resources/alerts/mssql/02-0000.html
http://www.nextgenss.com/vna/ms-sql.txt
http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/4/26086.html
http://www.securityfocus.com/bid/5014
http://www.securityfocus.com/bid/5204
http://www.securityfocus.com/bid/5205
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/139931
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/225555
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/279323
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/338195
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/370308
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/399260
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/484891
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/508387
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/619707
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/627275
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/682620
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/700575
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/796313
http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/811371
_________________________________________________________________

The CERT Coordination Center thanks NGSSoftware and Microsoft for their
contributions to this document.
_________________________________________________________________

Author: This document was written by Jeffrey P. Lanza. Your feedback is
appreciated.
______________________________________________________________________

This document is available from:
http://www.cert.org/advisories/CA-2002-22.html
______________________________________________________________________

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Copyright 2002 Carnegie Mellon University.

Revision History

Jul 29, 2002: Initial release

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