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From:MICROSOFT <secure_(at)_microsoft.com>
Date:12.08.2008
Subject:Microsoft Security Bulletin MS08-046 – Critical Vulnerability in Microsoft Windows Image Color Management System Could Allow Remote Code Execution (952954)

Microsoft Security Bulletin MS08-046 – Critical
Vulnerability in Microsoft Windows Image Color Management System Could Allow Remote Code Execution (952954)
Published: August 12, 2008

Version: 1.0
General Information
Executive Summary

This update resolves a privately reported vulnerability in the Microsoft Image Color Management (ICM) system that could allow remote code execution in the context of the current user. If a user is logged on with administrative user rights, an attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.

This update is rated Critical for all supported versions of Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Server 2003. For more information, see the subsection, Affected and Non-Affected Software, in this section.

The security update addresses this vulnerability by modifying the way that the Microsoft Color Management System (MSCMS) module of the Microsoft ICM component parses malformed image files and allocates memory. For more information about the vulnerability, see the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) subsection for the specific vulnerability entry under the next section, Vulnerability Information.

Recommendation.  Microsoft recommends that customers apply the update immediately.

Known Issues. None
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Affected and Non-Affected Software

The following software have been tested to determine which versions or editions are affected. Other versions or editions are either past their support life cycle or are not affected. To determine the support life cycle for your software version or edition, visit Microsoft Support Lifecycle.

Affected Software
Operating System Maximum Security Impact Aggregate Severity Rating Bulletins Replaced by this Update

Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 4


Remote Code Execution


Critical


None

Windows XP Service Pack 2 and Windows XP Service Pack 3


Remote Code Execution


Critical


None

Windows XP Professional x64 Edition and Windows XP Professional x64 Edition Service Pack 2


Remote Code Execution


Critical


None

Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 and Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 2


Remote Code Execution


Critical


None

Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition and Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition Service Pack 2


Remote Code Execution


Critical


None

Windows Server 2003 with SP1 for Itanium-based Systems and Windows Server 2003 with SP2 for Itanium-based Systems


Remote Code Execution


Critical


None

Non-Affected Software
Operating System

Windows Vista and Windows Vista Service Pack 1

Windows Vista x64 Edition and Windows Vista x64 Edition Service Pack 1

Windows Server 2008 for 32-bit Systems

Windows Server 2008 for x64-based Systems

Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-based Systems
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Related to This Security Update

Where are the file information details?
The file information details can be found in Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 952954.

I am using an older release of the software discussed in this security bulletin. What should I do?
The affected software listed in this bulletin have been tested to determine which releases are affected. Other releases are past their support life cycle. To determine the support life cycle for your software release, visit Microsoft Support Lifecycle.

It should be a priority for customers who have older releases of the software to migrate to supported releases to prevent potential exposure to vulnerabilities. For more information about the Windows Product Lifecycle, visit Microsoft Support Lifecycle. For more information about the extended security update support period for these software versions or editions, visit Microsoft Product Support Services.

Customers who require custom support for older releases must contact their Microsoft account team representative, their Technical Account Manager, or the appropriate Microsoft partner representative for custom support options. Customers without an Alliance, Premier, or Authorized Contract can contact their local Microsoft sales office. For contact information, visit Microsoft Worldwide Information, select the country, and then click Go to see a list of telephone numbers. When you call, ask to speak with the local Premier Support sales manager. For more information, see the Windows Operating System Product Support Lifecycle FAQ.
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Vulnerability Information

Severity Ratings and Vulnerability Identifiers
Affected Software Microsoft Color Management System Vulnerability - CVE-2008-2245 Aggregate Severity Rating

Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 4


Critical

Remote Code Execution


Critical

Windows XP Service Pack 2 and Windows XP Service Pack 3


Critical

Remote Code Execution


Critical

Windows XP Professional x64 Edition and Windows XP Professional x64 Edition Service Pack 2


Critical

Remote Code Execution


Critical

Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 and Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 2


Critical

Remote Code Execution


Critical

Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition and Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition Service Pack 2


Critical

Remote Code Execution


Critical

Windows Server 2003 with SP1 for Itanium-based Systems and Windows Server 2003 with SP2 for Itanium-based Systems


Critical

Remote Code Execution


Critical
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Microsoft Color Management System Vulnerability - CVE-2008-2245

A remote code execution vulnerability exists in the way that Microsoft Color Management System (MSCMS) module of the Microsoft ICM component handles memory allocation. The vulnerability could allow remote code execution if a user opens a specially crafted image file. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts.

To view this vulnerability as a standard entry in the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures list, see CVE-2008-2245.

Mitigating Factors for Microsoft Color Management System Vulnerability - CVE-2008-2245

Mitigation refers to a setting, common configuration, or general best-practice, existing in a default state, that could reduce the severity of exploitation of a vulnerability. The following mitigating factors may be helpful in your situation:


In a Web-based attack scenario, an attacker could host a Web site that contains a Web page that is used to exploit this vulnerability. In addition, compromised Web sites and Web sites that accept or host user-provided content or advertisements could contain specially crafted content that could exploit this vulnerability. In all cases, however, an attacker would have no way to force users to visit these Web sites. Instead, an attacker would have to convince users to visit the Web site, typically by getting them to click a link in an e-mail message or Instant Messenger message that takes users to the attacker's Web site.


An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the local user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.
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Workarounds for Microsoft Color Management System Vulnerability - CVE-2008-2245

Workaround refers to a setting or configuration change that does not correct the underlying vulnerability but would help block known attack vectors before you apply the update. Microsoft has tested the following workarounds and states in the discussion whether a workaround reduces functionality:


Turn off metafile processing by modifying the registry
Customers who have applied MS07-017 can disable metafile processing by modifying the registry. This setting will help protect the affected system from attempts to exploit this vulnerability.

To modify the key, follow these steps:

Note Using Registry Editor incorrectly can cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that problems resulting from the incorrect use of Registry Editor can be solved. Use Registry Editor at your own risk. For information about how to edit the registry, view the "Changing Keys And Values" Help topic in Registry Editor (Regedit.exe) or view the "Add and Delete Information in the Registry" and "Edit Registry Data" Help topics in Regedt32.exe.

1.


Click Start, click Run, type Regedit in the Open box, and then click OK.

2.


Locate and then click the following registry subkey:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\GRE_Initialize

3.


On the Edit menu, point to New, and then click DWORD.

4.


Type DisableMetaFiles, and then press ENTER.

5.


On the Edit menu, click Modify to modify the DisableMetaFiles registry entry.

6.


In the Value data box, type 1, and then click OK.

7.


Exit Registry Editor.

Impact of workaround.Turning off processing of metafiles may cause the appearance of software or system components to decrease in quality. Turning off processing of metafiles may also cause the software or system components to fail completely. It has been identified to have a potential significant functionality impact and should be evaluated and tested carefully to determine its applicability.

Examples include the following:


You cannot print on the computer.


Some applications on the computer may be unable to display Clipart.


Some scenarios that involve OLE rendering may break. This most often occurs when the object server is not active.

For more information on this setting read Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 941835.

How to undo the workaround.

1.


Click Start, click Run, type Regedit in the Open box, and then click OK.

2.


Locate and then click the following registry subkey:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\GRE_Initialize

3.


Delete the "DisableMetaFiles" value

You may have to restart your computer for this change to take effect.


Read e-mail messages in plain text format to help protect yourself from the HTML e-mail attack vector

You can help protect yourself against this vulnerability by changing your e-mail settings to read e-mail messages in plain text using Outlook 2002 and later, Outlook Express 6 and later, or Windows Mail. For information in Outlook, search “plain text” in Help and review “Read messages in plain text.” In Outlook Express, search “plain text” in Help and review “Reducing your risk of getting e-mail viruses.” In Windows Mail, search “plain text” in Help and review “Security and privacy in Windows Mail.”

Impact of workaround: E-mail messages that are viewed in plain text format will not contain pictures, specialized fonts, animations, or other rich content. Additionally:


The changes are applied to the preview pane and to open messages.


Pictures become attachments so that they are not lost.


Because the message is still in Rich Text or HTML format in the store, the object model (custom code solutions) may behave unexpectedly.
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FAQ for Microsoft Color Management System Vulnerability - CVE-2008-2245

What is the scope of the vulnerability?
This is a remote code execution vulnerability. If a user is logged on with administrative user rights, an attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.

What causes the vulnerability?
The vulnerability is caused by a heap overflow when the Microsoft Color Management System (MSCMS) module of the Microsoft ICM component improperly allocates memory for a specially crafted image file.

What is ICM?
Image Color Management (ICM) is a color management system that parses and uses data in ICC profiles to perform color translation operations. Consistent color across various displays and types of output can be problematic for content publishers. For example, in the publishing industry, consistent color throughout the commercial publishing process saves both time and money. Designers want to ensure that their clients' printed material will produce the same results when the job is passed to the service bureau, trade shop, and printer and that it will also look great when it's made available on the Internet. Differences in color space, gamut range, and gamut curve are unavoidable in most cases, because of the limitations of the devices or media in question. However, these differences can be tested for and recorded in an ICC profile using one of many software and hardware products currently available on the market. These ICC profiles are then used to communicate through the rest of the ICM system to ensure that colors are represented accurately to users, regardless of the device they use. For more information about ICM, see the following Microsoft Web site.

What is the International Color Consortium (ICC)?
The International Color Consortium is an organization whose purpose is to provide a standard by which vendors can implement color management to ensure cross vendor compatibility. For additional information about the International Color Consortium (ICC), visit the following Web site.

What might an attacker use the vulnerability to do?
An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could run arbitrary code. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

How could an attacker exploit the vulnerability?
This vulnerability requires that a user open a specially crafted image file.

In an e-mail attack scenario, an attacker could exploit the vulnerability by sending a specially crafted image file or an Office document with a specially crafted image file embedded in it to the user and by convincing the user to open the document or view the e-mail containing the specially crafted image file.

In a Web-based attack scenario, an attacker would have to host a Web site that contains an image file that is used to attempt to exploit this vulnerability. In addition, compromised Web sites and Web sites that accept or host user-provided content could contain specially crafted content that could exploit this vulnerability. An attacker would have no way to force users to visit a specially crafted Web site. Instead, an attacker would have to convince them to visit the Web site, typically by getting them to click a link in an e-mail message or Instant Messenger message that takes them to the attacker's site.

What systems are primarily at risk from the vulnerability?
Workstations and terminal servers are primarily at risk. Servers could be at more risk if administrators allow users to log on to servers and to run programs. However, best practices strongly discourage allowing this custom.

What does the update do?
The security update addresses this vulnerability by modifying the way that Microsoft Color Management System (MSCMS) allocates memory to processing image files.

When this security bulletin was issued, had this vulnerability been publicly disclosed?
No. Microsoft received information about this vulnerability through responsible disclosure. Microsoft had not received any information to indicate that this vulnerability had been publicly disclosed when this security bulletin was originally issued.

When this security bulletin was issued, had Microsoft received any reports that this vulnerability was being exploited?
No. Microsoft had not received any information to indicate that this vulnerability had been publicly used to attack customers and had not seen any examples of proof of concept code published when this security bulletin was originally issued.

Other Information
Acknowledgments

Microsoft thanks the following for working with us to help protect customers:


Jun Mao of VeriSign iDefense Labs for reporting the Microsoft Color Management System Vulnerability (CVE-2008-2245)

Support


Customers in the U.S. and Canada can receive technical support from Microsoft Product Support Services at 1-866-PCSAFETY. There is no charge for support calls that are associated with security updates.


International customers can receive support from their local Microsoft subsidiaries. There is no charge for support that is associated with security updates. For more information about how to contact Microsoft for support issues, visit the International Support Web site.

Disclaimer

The information provided in the Microsoft Knowledge Base is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Microsoft disclaims all warranties, either express or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. In no event shall Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers be liable for any damages whatsoever including direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, loss of business profits or special damages, even if Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers have been advised of the possibility of such damages. Some states do not allow the exclusion or limitation of liability for consequential or incidental damages so the foregoing limitation may not apply.

Revisions


V1.0 (August 10, 2008): Bulletin published.

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