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Debian: Security update for Mahara

Several vulnerabilities were discovered in mahara, an electronic portfolio, weblog, and resume builder. It was discovered that previous versions of Mahara did not check user credentials before adding a secret URL to a view or suspending a user. Due to a misconfiguration of the Pieform package in Mahara, the cross-site request forgery protection mechanism that Mahara relies on to harden its form was not working and was essentially disabled. Many of the JSON structures returned by Mahara for its AJAX interactions included more information than what ought to be disclosed to the logged in user. New versions of Mahara limit this information to what is necessary for each page.

Previous versions of Mahara did not escape the contents of HTML emails sent to users. Depending on the filters enabled in one’s mail reader, it could lead to cross-site scripting attacks. It has been pointed out to us that if Mahara is configured (through its wwwroot variable) to use HTTPS, it will happily let users login via the HTTP version of the site if the web server is configured to serve content over both protocol. Updated packages are available from security.debian.org.

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Debian Security Advisory DSA-2246-1                   security@debian.org
http://www.debian.org/security/                         Giuseppe Iuculano
May 29, 2011                           http://www.debian.org/security/faq
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Package        : mahara
Vulnerability  : several vulnerabilities
Problem type   : remote
Debian-specific: no
CVE ID         : CVE-2011-1402 CVE-2011-1403 CVE-2011-1404 CVE-2011-1405 
                CVE-2011-1406


Several vulnerabilities were discovered in mahara, an electronic portfolio,
weblog, and resume builder. The following Common Vulnerabilities and
Exposures project ids identify them:


CVE-2011-1402

 It was discovered that previous versions of Mahara did not check user
 credentials before adding a secret URL to a view or suspending a user.


CVE-2011-1403

 Due to a misconfiguration of the Pieform package in Mahara, the cross-site
 request forgery protection mechanism that Mahara relies on to harden its
 form was not working and was essentially disabled.
 This is a critical vulnerability which could allow attackers to trick other
 users (for example administrators) into performing malicious actions on
 behalf of the attacker. Most Mahara forms are vulnerable.


CVE-2011-1404

 Many of the JSON structures returned by Mahara for its AJAX interactions
 included more information than what ought to be disclosed to the logged in
 user. New versions of Mahara limit this information to what is necessary for
 each page.


CVE-2011-1405

 Previous versions of Mahara did not escape the contents of HTML emails sent
 to users. Depending on the filters enabled in one's mail reader, it could
 lead to cross-site scripting attacks.


CVE-2011-1406 

 It has been pointed out to us that if Mahara is configured (through its
 wwwroot variable) to use HTTPS, it will happily let users login via the HTTP
 version of the site if the web server is configured to serve content over
 both protocol. The new version of Mahara will, when the wwwroot points to an
 HTTPS URL, automatically redirect to HTTPS if it detects that it is being
 run over HTTP.

 We recommend that sites wanting to run Mahara over HTTPS make sure that
 their web server configuration does not allow the serving of content over
 HTTP and merely redirects to the secure version. We also suggest that site
 administrators consider adding the HSTS headers
 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTTP_Strict_Transport_Security) to their web
 server configuration.


For the oldstable distribution (lenny), these problems have been fixed in
version 1.0.4-4+lenny10.

For the stable distribution (squeeze), these problems have been fixed in
version 1.2.6-2+squeeze2.

For the testing distribution (wheezy), these problems have been fixed in
version 1.3.6-1.

For the unstable distribution (sid), these problems have been fixed in
version 1.3.6-1.

We recommend that you upgrade your mahara packages.

Further information about Debian Security Advisories, how to apply
these updates to your system and frequently asked questions can be
found at: http://www.debian.org/security/

Mailing list: debian-security-announce@lists.debian.org
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