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TUCoPS :: Antique Systems :: ciacd008.txt



                The Computer Incident Advisory Capability
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                         A D V I S O R Y   N O T I C E
                   Potential Vulnerability in VMS V5 and
                        Derivative Operating Systems
FEB 23, 1993  1200 PST                                          Number D-08
PROBLEM:  Malicious program simplifies exploitation of VMS vulnerability.
PLATFORM: Systems running VMS V5.0 through OpenVMS V5.5-2 and
          OpenVMS AXP V1.0 (including all SEVMS V5.1 through V5.5-2).
DAMAGE:   Authorized unprivileged users could obtain all system privileges.
SOLUTION: Apply patch available from Digital Equipment Corporation.
          Critical Information about Potential Vulnerability in VMS

CIAC has learned of a potential vulnerability in VMS, OpenVMS and Security
Enhanced VMS (SEVMS) as described in the following advisory (which was
requested to be distributed intact) from Digital Equipment Corporation:
========================== Begin DEC Advisory =============================
  DATE:     23.FEB.1993
  SOURCE:   Digital Equipment Corporation
  AUTHOR:   Software Security Response Team
            Colorado Springs USA
  PRODUCT:  VMS V5.0 through OpenVMS V5.5-2 & OpenVMS AXP V1.0
  PROBLEM:  Potential Security Vulnerability - OpenVMS
  SOLUTION: A remedial kit is now available for OpenVMS AXP V1.0,
            VMS V5.0 through OpenVMS Version 5.5-2 (including all SEVMS
            versions V5.1 through V5.5-2 as applicable) by contacting
            your normal Digital Services Support organization.

  This potential vulnerability has been corrected in the next release of
  OpenVMS, V6.0 and OpenVMS AXP, V1.5.  For VMS Versions prior to V5.0,
  Digital strongly recommends that you upgrade to a minimum of VMS V5.0
  and further, to the latest release of OpenVMS V5.5-2.
        The remedial kits may be identified as:
             VAXSYS01_U2050   VMS V5.0, V5.0-1, V5.0-2
             VAXSYS01_U1051   VMS V5.1 thru V5.1-1
             VAXSYS01_U1052   VMS V5.2, V5.2-1
             VAXSYS01_U2053   VMS V5.3 thru V5.3-2
             VAXSYS01_U3054   VMS V5.4 thru V5.4-3
             VAXSYS02_U2055   OpenVMS V5.5 thru V5.5-2
             AXPSYS01_010     OpenVMS AXP V1.0
  Copyright (c) Digital Equipment Corporation, 1993 All Rights Reserved.
  Published Rights Reserved Under The Copyright Laws Of The United States.
  This update kit corrects a potential security vulnerability in the VMS,
  OpenVMS VAX and OpenVMS AXP operating systems.  This potential
  vulnerability may be further exploited in the form of a malicious program
  that may allow authorized but unprivileged users to obtain all system
  privileges, potentially giving the unprivileged user control of your
  OpenVMS system and data.

  The update kit must be applied if an update or installation is performed
  for all versions prior to OpenVMS V6.0 or OpenVMS AXP V1.5.  For VMS
  Versions prior to VMS V5.0, Digital strongly recommends that you upgrade
  to a minimum of VMS V5.0 and further to the latest release of OpenVMS
  Digital strongly recommends that you install the available kit on your
  system(s), to avoid any potential vulnerability as a result of this

  Customers with a Digital Services contract may obtain a kit for the
  affected versions of OpenVMS by contacting your normal support

  -  In the U.S. Customers may contact the Customer Support Center
     at 1(800)354-9000 and request the appropriate kit for your version
     of OpenVMS, or through DSNlink Text Search database using the
     keyword text "Potential Security Vulnerability", or DSNlink VTX using
     the patch number 1084

  -  Customers in other geographies should contact their normal Digital
     Services support organizations.

  As always, Digital recommends you to regularly review your system
  management and security procedures.  Digital will continue to review and
  enhance security features, and work with our customers to further improve
  the integrity of their systems.
=========================== End DEC Advisory ==============================

CIAC recommends that you follow the DEC advisory to obtain and install
the appropriate patch.

If you require additional assistance or wish to report a vulnerability,
call CIAC at (510) 422-8193 or send e-mail to  FAX
messages to: (510) 423-8002.

For emergencies and off-hour assistance call 1-800-SKYPAGE and enter
PIN number 855-0070 (primary) or 855-0074 (secondary).

The CIAC Bulletin Board, Felicia, can be accessed at 1200 or 2400 baud
at (510) 423-4753 and 9600 baud at (510) 423-3331.  Previous CIAC
bulletins and other information is available via anonymous ftp from (ip address

PLEASE NOTE: Many users outside of the DOE and ESnet computing
communities receive CIAC bulletins.  If you are not part of these
communities, please contact your agency's response team to report
incidents.  Your agency's team will coordinate with CIAC.  The Forum of
Incident Response and Security Teams (FIRST) is a world-wide
organization.  A list of FIRST member organizations and their
constituencies can be obtained by sending email to
with an empty subject line and a message body containing the line:
send first-contacts.

This document was prepared as an account of work sponsored by an
agency of the United States Government.  Neither the United States
Government nor the University of California nor any of their
employees, makes any warranty, expressed or implied, or assumes any
legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or
usefulness of any information, product, or process disclosed, or
represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights.
Reference herein to any specific commercial products, process, or
service by trade name, trademark manufacturer, or otherwise, does not
necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or
favoring by the United States Government or the University of
California.  The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not
necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government nor
the University of California, and shall not be used for advertising or
product endorsement purposes.

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