I've found a bug in some program that led to automatically opening URLs that were received from other users of the program.

However, while writing up a report on it, I realized that I didn't know the name of the vulnerability.

I am no cybersecurity expert, so I tried to look it up, and some search results I've got from CWE and OWASP were close but didn't quite match this.

What could it be?

  • depending on the process, was it stored in a db or flat file? then recalled with the code intact? Storing html code is not a vulnerability, but if you don't want that activity, you can change the text to html entities, that would not execute the code after it gets recalled. – drtechno Feb 24 '19 at 18:29

What you've described is the impact of the vulnerability - a malicious URL being opened. If you're looking for a CWE, you're thinking about it from the wrong direction. CWEs describe weaknesses, which result in vulnerabilities, which result in potential impacts. Instead you should be considering how the vulnerability arose.

At a guess I'd say you're looking at some variant of 601 - Open Redirect, but that's a blind guess based on what you've said here.

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    That makes perfect sense, thank you for explaining it to me. – altskop Feb 24 '19 at 2:05
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    Agreed Polynomial. It sounds like an open redirect, or...if you wanted to get even more technical @altskop, you could potentially say it’s like a forced redirect. It also sounds like it could, maybe, be simply an XSS vulnerability, though that’s just a guess based on what you’ve described. Polynomial is right - focus on the source of the behavior in order to effectively describe the vulnerability. And, welcome to the SE! – securityOrange Feb 24 '19 at 4:02

That sounds more like a lack of implemented user confidentiality, meaning two users running a program can see each other's data (the URL). So - "loss of confidentiality" or "failure of user multi-tenancy" or "lack of application testing and security as part of software design" but not a traditional vulnerability in code.

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  • I don't think this is correct. The application auto-opening a URL sent by another user isn't anything to do with confidentiality. It's more like an RCE really, but not quite. – Polynomial Feb 24 '19 at 1:13
  • If the role of the application was to handle URLs sent by users then leaking the URL to another user is a loss of confidentiality. I guess I cannot fathom what purpose does "a URL sent by any user" serve. – HackneyB Feb 24 '19 at 1:48
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    The bug here isn't that it leaks the URL to another user. It's that a malicious user can send a URL to another user that is automatically opened when they view the message. – Polynomial Feb 24 '19 at 1:50
  • Agreed, I see what you mean. – HackneyB Feb 24 '19 at 1:53

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