AOL Instant Messenger vulnerable to denial of service via crafted file name

ID VU:683765
Type cert
Reporter CERT
Modified 2002-04-05T21:30:00



AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) 4.1 and prior are vulnerable to a denial of service vulnerability. A denial of service occurs when filenames that contain a "%s" are sent to a victim.


AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) is a program for communicating with other users over the Internet. AIM permits users to transfer files from one client to another. Versions 4.1 and prior contained a fromat string vulnerability that made it possible to cause a denial of service to the recipient of a file, when the file transferred contained a "%s" in the name.


An attacker can crash the victim's client causing a denial of service. Note that this vulnerability is consistant with a format string vulnerability and there may be the potential to exploit this vulnerability to execute arbitrary code.


Upgrade to a version later than 4.1.

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AOL Time Warner __ Affected

Notified: October 17, 2001 Updated: January 28, 2002



Vendor Statement

This was fixed long ago. This occurs in the 4.1 clients that are over 1 1/2 years old.

Vendor Information

The vendor has not provided us with any further information regarding this vulnerability.


The CERT/CC has no additional comments at this time.

If you have feedback, comments, or additional information about this vulnerability, please send us email.

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Our thanks to Adam Spun , who discovered this vulnerability.

This document was written by Jason Rafail.

Other Information

CVE IDs: | CVE-2000-1000
Severity Metric: | 7.50
Date Public: | 2000-10-03
Date First Published: | 2002-04-05
Date Last Updated: | 2002-04-05 21:30 UTC
Document Revision: | 11