ZDI-09-050: Sun Java Web Start JPEG Header Parsing Integer Overflow Vulnerability http://www.zerodayinitiative.com/advisories/ZDI-09-050 August 5, 2009
-- Affected Vendors: Sun Microsystems
-- Affected Products: Sun Microsystems Java Runtime
-- Vulnerability Details: This vulnerability allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code on vulnerable installations of Sun Java Web Start. User interaction is required to exploit this vulnerability in that the target must visit a malicious page.
The specific flaw exists within the code that handles loading a custom JPEG splash screen for a WebStart application. While handling certain parts of the splash screen, javaws.exe makes an improper calculation which is later used for an allocation. Later during decompression, Java Web Start will write data into this mis-allocated buffer resulting in a heap-based buffer overflow and eventual code execution under the context of the current user.
-- Vendor Response: Sun Microsystems has issued an update to correct this vulnerability. More details can be found at:
-- Disclosure Timeline: 2009-03-26 - Vulnerability reported to vendor 2009-08-05 - Coordinated public release of advisory
-- Credit: This vulnerability was discovered by: * Anonymous
-- About the Zero Day Initiative (ZDI): Established by TippingPoint, The Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) represents a best-of-breed model for rewarding security researchers for responsibly disclosing discovered vulnerabilities.
Researchers interested in getting paid for their security research through the ZDI can find more information and sign-up at:
The ZDI is unique in how the acquired vulnerability information is used. TippingPoint does not re-sell the vulnerability details or any exploit code. Instead, upon notifying the affected product vendor, TippingPoint provides its customers with zero day protection through its intrusion prevention technology. Explicit details regarding the specifics of the vulnerability are not exposed to any parties until an official vendor patch is publicly available. Furthermore, with the altruistic aim of helping to secure a broader user base, TippingPoint provides this vulnerability information confidentially to security vendors (including competitors) who have a vulnerability protection or mitigation product.
Our vulnerability disclosure policy is available online at: