Microsoft Internet Explorer does not properly handle cached HTTPS contents

ID VU:795720
Type cert
Reporter CERT
Modified 2004-10-21T00:00:00



Microsoft Internet Explorer fails to properly validate cached HTTPS contents, allowing an attacker to obtain information or spoof information on a secure web site.


The HTTPS protocol is used to provide authentication, encryption, integrity, and non-repudiation services to web applications. Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) does not properly validate cached HTTPS content. An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by creating a web site with the same host name as the legitimate HTTPS protected web site. When the attacker's web site is viewed, the contents are cached. If the attacker redirects the victim's browser to the legitimate web site, the attacker's cached contents are then displayed within the context of that web site. The cached content could include script code, images, or other locally cached items.


An attacker may be able to spoof information on a secure web site. Using script, an attacker may be able to retrieve cookies or other information from a secure web session.


Apply a patch

Apply the patch referenced in MS04-038.

Do not save encrypted pages to disk

To prevent this vulnerability from being exploited, change the IE settings to not save encrypted contents to disk. To make this change, follow these steps (provided by MS04-038):

1. In Internet Explorer, click **Internet Options** on the **Tools** menu. 
2. Click the **Advanced** tab. 
3. Under **Settings**, scroll to **Security**. 
4. Under** Settings,** in the **Security** section, click **Do not save encrypted pages to disk.**
5. Click **OK** two times to return to Internet Explorer.

Systems Affected

Vendor| Status| Date Notified| Date Updated
Microsoft Corporation| | -| 15 Oct 2004
If you are a vendor and your product is affected, let us know.

CVSS Metrics

Group | Score | Vector
Base | N/A | N/A
Temporal | N/A | N/A
Environmental | N/A | N/A


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Thanks to Microsoft for reporting this vulnerability. Microsoft credits Mitja Kolsek from ACROS Security for reporting the vulnerability.

This document was written by Will Dormann.

Other Information

  • CVE IDs: CAN-2004-0845
  • Date Public: 12 Oct 2004
  • Date First Published: 19 Oct 2004
  • Date Last Updated: 21 Oct 2004
  • Severity Metric: 9.72
  • Document Revision: 8