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From: barrie at (Barrie Dempster)
Subject: Trivial Bug in Symantec Security Products

On Wed, 2004-12-29 at 17:56 -0500, J. Oquendo wrote:
> Symantec could rewrite their updates to include a timer, or check via
> atomic clock. Other options include informing their customers not to
> commit the evil act of modifying the dates on their computers.

Inadequate solutions:
1. Rewrite the updates to include a timer - the downloaded update could
be modified and the timer changed. Even if the update is encrypted or
checksum'd the decryption algorithm/key would have to be in the users
product so could easily be reverse engineered.

2.Check date via an atomic clock - sticking a fake IP for the clock
domain name into the hosts file or creating a fake local response to the
time request would overcome this.

The true solution would be a completely server side check, such as a
user/pass combination with the details stored on Symantec's servers and
the downloads blocked by http authentication using these credentials
(which expire at subscription end). The only real work arounds for this
are to compromise the account of another user or the servers themselves.

When auditing and disclosing a bad solution in a product it's a good
idea to research your solution to ensure it doesn't contain easily
exploitable vulnerabilities. Nonetheless Symatec might want to address
this in order to keep that stock price up. :-)
With Regards..
Barrie Dempster (zeedo) - Fortiter et Strenue

[ gpg --recv-keys --keyserver 0x96025FD0 ]

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