The value of the josso_username request parameter is copied into the HTML document as plain text between tags. The payload f8831<script>alert(1)</script>ef3a8547c66c98944 was submitted in the josso_username parameter. This input was echoed unmodified in the application's response.
The original request used the POST method, however it was possible to convert the request to use the GET method, to enable easier demonstration and delivery of the attack.
The attacker-supplied code can perform a wide variety of actions, such as stealing the victim's session token or login credentials, performing arbitrary actions on the victim's behalf, and logging their keystrokes.
Users can be induced to issue the attacker's crafted request in various ways. For example, the attacker can send a victim a link containing a malicious URL in an email or instant message. They can submit the link to popular web sites that allow content authoring, for example in blog comments. And they can create an innocuous looking web site which causes anyone viewing it to make arbitrary cross-domain requests to the vulnerable application (using either the GET or the POST method).
The security impact of cross-site scripting vulnerabilities is dependent upon the nature of the vulnerable application, the kinds of data and functionality which it contains, and the other applications which belong to the same domain and organisation. If the application is used only to display non-sensitive public content, with no authentication or access control functionality, then a cross-site scripting flaw may be considered low risk. However, if the same application resides on a domain which can access cookies for other more security-critical applications, then the vulnerability could be used to attack those other applications, and so may be considered high risk. Similarly, if the organisation which owns the application is a likely target for phishing attacks, then the vulnerability could be leveraged to lend credibility to such attacks, by injecting Trojan functionality into the vulnerable application, and exploiting users' trust in the organisation in order to capture credentials for other applications which it owns. In many kinds of application, such as those providing online banking functionality, cross-site scripting should always be considered high risk.
In most situations where user-controllable data is copied into application responses, cross-site scripting attacks can be prevented using two layers of defences:
Input should be validated as strictly as possible on arrival, given the kind of content which it is expected to contain. For example, personal names should consist of alphabetical and a small range of typographical characters, and be relatively short; a year of birth should consist of exactly four numerals; email addresses should match a well-defined regular expression. Input which fails the validation should be rejected, not sanitised.
User input should be HTML-encoded at any point where it is copied into application responses. All HTML metacharacters, including < > " ' and =, should be replaced with the corresponding HTML entities (< > etc).
In cases where the application's functionality allows users to author content using a restricted subset of HTML tags and attributes (for example, blog comments which allow limited formatting and linking), it is necessary to parse the supplied HTML to validate that it does not use any dangerous syntax; this is a non-trivial task.
GET /josso/signon/usernamePasswordLogin.do?input_username=%27%22--%3E%3C%2Fstyle%3E%3C%2Fscript%3E%3Cscript%3Ealert%280x0003B7%29%3C%2Fscript%3E&josso_cmd=login&josso_username=f8831<script>alert(1)</script>ef3a8547c66c98944&product_id=6&josso_password=password HTTP/1.1 Host: ssoprod.netratings.com Proxy-Connection: keep-alive Referer: http://ssoprod.netratings.com/josso/signon/usernamePasswordLogin.do Cache-Control: max-age=0 Origin: http://ssoprod.netratings.com User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.1; en-US) AppleWebKit/534.16 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/10.0.648.205 Safari/534.16 Accept: application/xml,application/xhtml+xml,text/html;q=0.9,text/plain;q=0.8,image/png,*/*;q=0.5 Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate,sdch Accept-Language: en-US,en;q=0.8 Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.3 Cookie: cid655bid=001100000007423B-E; JSESSIONID=BC9B57FFD6E4F1538B638CF6B0186A48.a01
Passwords submitted over an unencrypted connection are vulnerable to capture by an attacker who is suitably positioned on the network. This includes any malicious party located on the user's own network, within their ISP, within the ISP used by the application, and within the application's hosting infrastructure. Even if switched networks are employed at some of these locations, techniques exist to circumvent this defence and monitor the traffic passing through switches.
The application should use transport-level encryption (SSL or TLS) to protect all sensitive communications passing between the client and the server. Communications that should be protected include the login mechanism and related functionality, and any functions where sensitive data can be accessed or privileged actions can be performed. These areas of the application should employ their own session handling mechanism, and the session tokens used should never be transmitted over unencrypted communications. If HTTP cookies are used for transmitting session tokens, then the secure flag should be set to prevent transmission over clear-text HTTP.
Sensitive information within URLs may be logged in various locations, including the user's browser, the web server, and any forward or reverse proxy servers between the two endpoints. URLs may also be displayed on-screen, bookmarked or emailed around by users. They may be disclosed to third parties via the Referer header when any off-site links are followed. Placing session tokens into the URL increases the risk that they will be captured by an attacker.
The application should use an alternative mechanism for transmitting session tokens, such as HTTP cookies or hidden fields in forms that are submitted using the POST method.
GET /josso/signon/usernamePasswordLogin.do;jsessionid=3AA761F94AA76886B4516B6961127C9C.a01 HTTP/1.1 Host: ssoprod.netratings.com Proxy-Connection: keep-alive User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.1; en-US) AppleWebKit/534.16 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/10.0.648.205 Safari/534.16 Accept: application/xml,application/xhtml+xml,text/html;q=0.9,text/plain;q=0.8,image/png,*/*;q=0.5 Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate,sdch Accept-Language: en-US,en;q=0.8 Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.3 Cookie: cid655bid=001100000007423B-E; JSESSIONID=BC9B57FFD6E4F1538B638CF6B0186A48.a01
The cookie appears to contain a session token, which may increase the risk associated with this issue. You should review the contents of the cookie to determine its function.
There is usually no good reason not to set the HttpOnly flag on all cookies. Unless you specifically require legitimate client-side scripts within your application to read or set a cookie's value, you should set the HttpOnly flag by including this attribute within the relevant Set-cookie directive.
You should be aware that the restrictions imposed by the HttpOnly flag can potentially be circumvented in some circumstances, and that numerous other serious attacks can be delivered by client-side script injection, aside from simple cookie stealing.
GET /josso/signon/?product_id=6 HTTP/1.1 Host: ssoprod.netratings.com Proxy-Connection: keep-alive User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.1; en-US) AppleWebKit/534.16 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/10.0.648.205 Safari/534.16 Accept: application/xml,application/xhtml+xml,text/html;q=0.9,text/plain;q=0.8,image/png,*/*;q=0.5 Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate,sdch Accept-Language: en-US,en;q=0.8 Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.3 Cookie: cid655bid=001100000007423B-E; JSESSIONID=DF3AAA61906B3112BCA7E806E5130B8D.a02
Most browsers have a facility to remember user credentials that are entered into HTML forms. This function can be configured by the user and also by applications which employ user credentials. If the function is enabled, then credentials entered by the user are stored on their local computer and retrieved by the browser on future visits to the same application.
The stored credentials can be captured by an attacker who gains access to the computer, either locally or through some remote compromise. Further, methods have existed whereby a malicious web site can retrieve the stored credentials for other applications, by exploiting browser vulnerabilities or through application-level cross-domain attacks.
To prevent browsers from storing credentials entered into HTML forms, you should include the attribute autocomplete="off" within the FORM tag (to protect all form fields) or within the relevant INPUT tags (to protect specific individual fields).
When a web browser makes a request for a resource, it typically adds an HTTP header, called the "Referer" header, indicating the URL of the resource from which the request originated. This occurs in numerous situations, for example when a web page loads an image or script, or when a user clicks on a link or submits a form.
If the resource being requested resides on a different domain, then the Referer header is still generally included in the cross-domain request. If the originating URL contains any sensitive information within its query string, such as a session token, then this information will be transmitted to the other domain. If the other domain is not fully trusted by the application, then this may lead to a security compromise.
You should review the contents of the information being transmitted to other domains, and also determine whether those domains are fully trusted by the originating application.
Today's browsers may withhold the Referer header in some situations (for example, when loading a non-HTTPS resource from a page that was loaded over HTTPS, or when a Refresh directive is issued), but this behaviour should not be relied upon to protect the originating URL from disclosure.
Note also that if users can author content within the application then an attacker may be able to inject links referring to a domain they control in order to capture data from URLs used within the application.
The application should never transmit any sensitive information within the URL query string. In addition to being leaked in the Referer header, such information may be logged in various locations and may be visible on-screen to untrusted parties.
The presence of email addresses within application responses does not necessarily constitute a security vulnerability. Email addresses may appear intentionally within contact information, and many applications (such as web mail) include arbitrary third-party email addresses within their core content.
However, email addresses of developers and other individuals (whether appearing on-screen or hidden within page source) may disclose information that is useful to an attacker; for example, they may represent usernames that can be used at the application's login, and they may be used in social engineering attacks against the organisation's personnel. Unnecessary or excessive disclosure of email addresses may also lead to an increase in the volume of spam email received.
You should review the email addresses being disclosed by the application, and consider removing any that are unnecessary, or replacing personal addresses with anonymous mailbox addresses (such as email@example.com).