[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

bug#22202: 24.5; SECURITY ISSUE -- Emacs Server vulnerable to random num

From: Richard Copley
Subject: bug#22202: 24.5; SECURITY ISSUE -- Emacs Server vulnerable to random number generator attack on Windows systems
Date: Tue, 29 Dec 2015 15:36:12 +0000

> Please provide the necessary details for reproducing this problem and
> verifying the solution.  What I'm missing:
> > 1. Be logged into the same Windows computer as someone else.
> How do you do that?  I understand you are describing a situation where
> 2 users are logged into the same Windows system simultaneously using
> the same credentials, is that true?  If so, how to create such a
> situation?

I don't think that is possible; however, two /different/ accounts can
be logged in to a computer at the same time, via Remote Desktop or
Fast User Switching. (If the computer is a Remote Desktop server then
two users can be simultaneously interacting with their desktops, in
separate sessions. That's not at all uncommon in a business
environment, but I don't think it's relevant to this question.)

> > 2. Have a process running that is notified whenever a process starts up
> > 3. Have them run `emacs --daemon' or invoke `server-start'.
> > 4. Use the knowledge of the current time and the server's PID to guess
> >    the authentication key.
> I don't think we use the current time and PID for that, but even if we
> do, how do you get a hold of the time at the moment of the server
> creation to nanosecond resolution?  Please tell how to do that.

We use function "random" (see function "server-generate-key"); its
seed is typically set at startup using the current time and PID (see
"init_random()" in sysdep.c), so it's the time Emacs started that you
would want to know, not the time the server started. You can get the
start time (to the nearest second at least) and PID of any user's
processes using, e.g., Process Explorer.

I'm not sure what resolution timestamp we end up using as the seed.
gettime() might return microsecond timestamps in certain configurations.

I can't speak for Demetri but it seems to me he's imagining an attacker
who is prepared to use a certain amount of brute force. Knowing or
guessing the Emacs start time within a few seconds would reduce the
search space.

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]