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Date: Tue, 09 Jan 2007 14:21:14 -0500
From: iDefense Labs <>
Subject: iDefense Security Advisory 01.09.07: Microsoft Excel Invalid Column
 Heap Corruption Vulnerability

Microsoft Excel Invalid Column Heap Corruption Vulnerability

iDefense Security Advisory 01.09.07
Jan 09, 2007


Microsoft Excel is the spreadsheet application from the Microsoft Office
System. More information is available at the following link:


Remote exploitation of an input validation error in Microsoft Corp.'s Excel
spreadsheet application may allow the execution of arbitrary code.

The vulnerability specifically exists in the handling of out of range
values in the column field in several BIFF8 record types. By supplying an
invalid Column field to one of these records, it is possible to cause the
system to reference arbitrary memory. This can be exploited to gain
control of the application.


Successful exploitation of this vulnerability would allow an attacker to
execute arbitrary code in the context of the user who opened the document.
In order exploit this vulnerability, an attacker would need to convince the
target to open an Excel spreadsheet file. Likely attack vectors include
sending the file as an attachment in an email or linking to the file on a

Systems with a default install of Office 2000 will open Office documents,
including Excel spreadsheet files, from websites without prompting the
user. This allows an attacker to exploit this vulnerability without user
interaction beyond visiting a website. Later versions of Office will not
open these documents automatically unless the user has chosen this


iDefense has confirmed the existence of this vulnerability in Microsoft
Excel 2003 with all available service packs and security patches. Previous
versions of Excel are also likely to be affected.


Do not follow links or open files from unknown sources or that you were not
expecting to receive.


Microsoft has addressed this vulnerability with Microsoft Security Bulletin
MS07-002. A link to this bulletin can be found below.


The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the
name CVE-2007-0030 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in
the CVE list (, which standardizes names for
security problems.


09/14/2006  Initial vendor notification
09/15/2006  Initial vendor response
01/09/2007  Coordinated public disclosure


This vulnerability was discovered by Greg MacManus, iDefense Labs.

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Copyright © 2006 iDefense, Inc.

Permission is granted for the redistribution of this alert electronically.
It may not be edited in any way without the express written consent of
iDefense. If you wish to reprint the whole or any part of this alert in
any other medium other than electronically, please e-mail for permission.

Disclaimer: The information in the advisory is believed to be accurate at
the time of publishing based on currently available information. Use of
the information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS condition.
There are no warranties with regard to this information. Neither the
author nor the publisher accepts any liability for any direct, indirect,
or consequential loss or damage arising from use of, or reliance on, this

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