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Date: Wed, 22 Jan 2020 12:03:43 +0100
From: Pentagrid AG <>
Subject: [FD] CVE-2019-19363 - Local Privilege Escalation in many Ricoh
 Printer Drivers for Windows

Local Privilege Escalation in many Ricoh Printer Drivers for Windows


Pentagrid has been asked to  manage the coordinated disclosure process
for a vulnerability that affects several Windows printer drivers for a
wide  range of  printers  by  the printer  manufacture  Ricoh. Due  to
improperly  set  file permissions  of  file  system entries  that  are
installed when a printer is added  to a Windows system, any local user
is able to overwrite program library files (DLLs) with own code.


The improperly  protected library  files are  loaded by  the Windows
PrintIsolationHost.exe,  which  is  a privileged  process  running  as
SYSTEM. When an attacker overwrites library  files that are used in an
administrative   context,  the   library  code   gets  executed   with
administrative  privileges as  well.  Thus, the  attacker  is able  to
escalate privileges to SYSTEM.

As installing printer  drivers is not disallowed by  default on Domain
managed Windows computers,  this can be used as  a universal privilege
escalation as  long as  the vulnerable printer  drivers are  valid and

CVSS:3.1/AV:L/AC:L/PR:L/UI:N/S:C/C:H/I:H/A:H, 8.8 High


* 2019-10-17: Pentagrid has been asked to support the disclosure
              process, because the source was not successful in
              reporting this vulnerability to Ricoh.
* 2019-10-23: Asked @ricoheurope Twitter channel regarding a security
              contact. No response, yet.
* 2019-10-29: Successfully established a contact with a Ricoh employee
              via LinkedIn. Other contact attempts via LinkedIn failed
              so far.
* 2019-10-29: Asked @AskRicoh Twitter channel regarding a security
* 2019-10-31: Received two e-mail addresses as potential security
              contacts via LinkedIn contact.
* 2019-11-02: Initial contact with provided two Ricoh e-mail addresses.
* 2019-11-04: Received PSIRT contact address (
* 2019-11-05: Sent preliminary advisory to PSIRT.
* 2019-11-05: @AskRicoh responded on Twitter.
* 2019-11-14: Response from Ricoh PSIRT with a timeline proposal and
              intended steps.
* 2019-12-05: CVE-2019-19363 has been assigned.
* 2020-01-22: Ricoh published an advisory
              ( Fixes and
              mitigations have not been verified, yet.
* 2020-01-22: Advisory updated and published after 90 days of initial

Affected Components

Printer  drivers  for  Ricoh,  Savin and  Lanier  printer  brands  are
affected.  The  following drivers  for  Windows  10  are known  to  be

* SP 8300DN - PCL6 Driver for Universal Print, Ver.,
  release date 10/08/2019:
* SP 8300DN - PCL 6 Driver, Ver., release date 07/03/2016:
* P 501/502 - PCL 6 Driver, Ver., release date 03/02/2019:
* MP C8003/C6503 series - PCL 6 Driver, Ver., release date

Especially the Universal Print driver supports a wide range of printer
models. Furthermore, printers are also  marketed under the brand names
Savin and Lanier, which use  the same drivers.  Additional drivers and
driver versions are affected as well.  Ricoh's advisory lists affected
drivers and versions.

Technical Details

To reproduce  the vulnerability,  download an affected  printer driver
such  as  the  PCL6  Driver for  Universal  Print,  Version,
self-extract the executable file and install the driver.

In a standard Windows installation, adding  a printer does not need an
administrator account. Instead, the  printer driver could be installed
by adding a printer and selecting an installation media.

During  the  printer  setup,  the  process  of  PrintIsolationHost.exe
creates  a directory  c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\  and installs  several
files in this  location, including several DLL files.   Every user has
full control over the installed DLL files as show below, because these
files are writable:

C:\>icacls "c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\RICOH PCL6 UniversalDriver
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\RICOH PCL6 UniversalDriver
V4.23\_common\dlz\borderline.dll Everyone:(I)(F)
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\RICOH PCL6 UniversalDriver
V4.23\_common\dlz\headerfooter.dll Everyone:(I)(F)
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\RICOH PCL6 UniversalDriver
V4.23\_common\dlz\jobhook.dll Everyone:(I)(F)
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\RICOH PCL6 UniversalDriver
V4.23\_common\dlz\overlaywatermark.dll Everyone:(I)(F)
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\RICOH PCL6 UniversalDriver
V4.23\_common\dlz\popup.dll Everyone:(I)(F)
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV\RICOH PCL6 UniversalDriver
V4.23\_common\dlz\watermark.dll Everyone:(I)(F)

Successfully processed 6 files; Failed processing 0 files

The flag  F means  full access  and the flag  I means  permissions are
inherited  from  the parent  directory.  The  inherited writable  flag
origins  from  a  parent  directory. In  fact,  the  entire  directory
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV grants full control to everyone:

C:\>icacls "c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV"
c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV Everyone:(OI)(CI)(F)

Successfully processed 1 files; Failed processing 0 files

Here OI means Object Inherit, CI  Container Inherit, and F full access
as above.

The printer  isolation feature  has been introduced  in Windows  7 and
Windows  Server 2008  to  not have  the printer  drivers  in the  same
process as the  spooler. The isolation should add  stability for other
user's print jobs.


When a  DLL file from  the c:\ProgramData\RICOH_DRV is  overwritten in
the  right  moment by  a  local  attacker, the  PrintIsolationHost.exe
process  loads  the  attacker-provided  DLL   file
 below.  Afterward, the  library  code  gets executed  with
SYSTEM  privileges,  because  the PrintIsolationHost.exe  uses  SYSTEM
privileges.  This attack  idea  has  been implemented  in  a proof  of
concept exploit that is given in a later section of this advisory.


To exploit  the vulnerability, an  attacker needs access to  a Windows
host as a regular  user and must be able to  install an affected Ricoh
printer driver as  well as to add printers, which  is usually possible
without administrative access.

Patches and Workaround

Please  refer  to  Ricoh's   advisory  for  mitigations  and  security
patches. Pentagrid has not reviewed them, yet.

Windows  Group  policies  are  a  potential  workaround.   When  group
policies  are used,  there is  a  group policy  to control  installing
printer  drivers  (Windows  Settings  -> Security  Settings  ->  Local
Policies -> Security Options -> Devices: Prevent Users From Installing
Printer Drivers) and  another group policy to  control adding printers
(User Configuration  -> Administrative  Templates -> Control  Panel ->
Printers ->  Prevent addition of  printers). When used,  people cannot
install drivers, respectively adding printers.


This  vulnerability has  been  found by  Alexander  Pudwill, who  also
provided  an initial  proof of  concept  exploit in  C#. Pentagrid  AG
independently  validated the  findings,  fully  automated the  exploit
process and handled the coordinated disclosure.

Proof of Concept Exploit

An exploit has been publish online at:


Pentagrid AG <>

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