iDefense Security Advisory 05.07.08
May 07, 2008
rdesktop is an open source client that speaks the Remote Desktop
Protocol (RDP). This allows Unix-based users to login to Windows
Terminal Servers. More information is available at the following URL.
Remote exploitation of a BSS overflow vulnerability in rdesktop, as
included in various vendors' operating system distributions, allows
attackers to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the
The vulnerability exists within the code responsible for reading in an
RDP redirect request. This request is used to redirect an RDP
connection from one server to another. When parsing the redirect
request, the rdesktop client reads several 32-bit integers from the
request packet. These integers are then used to control the number of
bytes read into statically allocated buffers. This results in several
buffers located in the BSS section being overflowed, which can lead to
the execution of arbitrary code.
Exploitation of this vulnerability results in the execution of arbitrary
code with the privileges of the logged in user. In order to exploit this
vulnerability, an attacker must persuade a targeted user to connect to a
malicious RDP server.
iDefense confirmed the existence of this vulnerability in rdesktop
version 1.5.0. Previous versions may also be affected.
iDefense is currently unaware of any effective workaround for this
VI. VENDOR RESPONSE
The rdesktop maintainer has addressed this vulnerability with CVS
revision 1.102 of rdp.c. For more information, visit the following URL.
VII. CVE INFORMATION
The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the
name CVE-2008-1802 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in
the CVE list (http://cve.mitre.org/), which standardizes names for
VIII. DISCLOSURE TIMELINE
11/12/2007 Initial vendor notification
11/19/2007 Initial vendor response
05/07/2008 Public disclosure
The discoverer of this vulnerability wishes to remain anonymous.
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X. LEGAL NOTICES
Copyright =A9 2008 iDefense, Inc.
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