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TUCoPS :: PC Hacks :: va1083.htm

Hewlett-Packard BIOS Plain Text Password Disclosure



Hewlett-Packard BIOS Plain Text Password Disclosure
Hewlett-Packard BIOS Plain Text Password Disclosure



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[ iViZ Security Advisory 08-002                            25/08/2008 ]
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iViZ Techno Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
http://www.ivizsecurity.com 
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* Title:     Hewlett-Packard BIOS Plain Text Password Disclosure
* Date:      25/08/2008
* Software:  Hewlett-Packard BIOS

* Vendor Bug Tracker : SSRT080104

- --[ Synopsis:

    Like most BIOSes, HP 68DTT Ver. F.0D can be used to ask a password
    to users at boot time to implement a pre-boot authentication.

    The password checking routine of Hewlett-Packard 68DTT Ver. F.0D
    (11/22/2005) fails to sanitize the BIOS keyboard buffer after reading
    user input, resulting in plain text password leakage to local users.

- --[ Affected Software:

  * Hewlett-Packard 68DTT Ver. F.0D BIOS (possibly others too)

- --[ Technical description:

    The BIOS's pre-boot authentication routines use the BIOS API to
    read user input via the keyboard. The BIOS internally copies the
    keystrokes in a RAM structure called the BIOS Keyboard buffer
    inside the BIOS Data Area. This buffer is not flushed after use,
    resulting in potential plain text password leakage once the OS
    is fully booted, assuming the attacker can read the password at
    physical memory location 0x40:0x1e.

- --[ Impact:

    Plain text password disclosure. Local access is required, but no
    physical access to the machine.

    The level of privilege required to retrieve the password from memory
    is OS dependent and varies from guest user under Microsoft Windows
    (any) to root user under most Unix based OSes.

- --[ Full Technical Whitepaper

http://www.ivizsecurity.com/research/preboot/preboot_whitepaper.pdf 

- --[ Vendor response:

  * HP Software Security Response Team has acknowledged the vulnerability and
    is pro-actively working on a fix.

- --[ Credits:

    This vulnerability was discovered by Security Researcher
    Jonathan Brossard from iViZ Techno Solutions Pvt. Ltd.

- --[ Disclosure timeline:

  * First private disclosure to vendor on July 15th 2008
  * First vendor reply on 1st August 2008, assigned vendor
    tracker SSRT080104.
  * First Public disclosure at Defcon 16 on August 10th 2008

- --[ Reference:

http://www.ivizsecurity.com/security-advisory.html 
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