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paros proxy v3.2.5 and below blank "sa" password
From: Andrew Christensen <anc () fortconsult net>
Date: Wed, 19 Oct 2005 16:14:03 +0200

Title:        Paros proxy 3.2.5 and below blank "sa" database password 


       Paros is an intercepting HTTP/HTTPS proxy for use in security 
testing web applications. 

       Paros version 3.2.5 and below  may contain a flaw where a remote 
attacker can connect to a 
       database port opened on the machine running Paros, without 
supplying any credentials. 

       The problem stems from use of a blank "sa" password on the 
open-source database ("HSQLDB") 
       which is integrated with Paros. 

       The database server (which is written in Java) contains 
functionality for executing arbitrary Java 
       statements. This is how HSQLDB provides Stored Procedure 

Impact of successful exploitation: 

       The issue may result in disclosure of confidential data, and 
possible execution of commands on 
       the victim machine. 

       A remote attacker may find credentials for web applications, valid 
session IDs, and confidential 
       data downloaded from the website being tested with Paros. This 
information is is present in the 

       Additionally, the possibility of executing Java statements on the 
database server may mean that 
       an attacker can gain access to files or execute command at the OS 
level (by performing the 
       Java equivalent of a "system()" call). This has not been 
investigated fully, but appears possible.


       The overall time-to-correction was EXCEEDINGLY fast:

       October 3rd 2005:        Problem discovered / reported 
       October 7th 2005:        Issue re-reported via sourceforge, as mail 
appeared lost in transit 
       October 7th 2005:        Paros developer releases updated version 
where DB listes on localhost only


       Upgrade to version 3.2.6. 
       Firewall the host running Paros. 


To demonstrate this, first start Paros on the victim host (here,

On the attacking host, ensure HSQLDB is installed, and add the following 
lines to the file 
$HOME/sqltool.rc on the attacking host: 

       # connect to victimhost as sa, victimhost has IP 
       urlid victimhost-sa 
       url: jbdc:hsqldb:hsql:// 
       username sa 

To connect using the "victimhost-sa" block above run: 
       java -jar $HSQLDB_HOME/jsqldb.jar victimhost-sa 

At this point, it is possible to pull data from the tables in the database 
(browsing state, history, credentials). 

The page at http://hsqldb.org/doc/guide/ch09.html#call-section also states 
it is possible to execute Java statements 
by writing them in the format "java.lang.Math.sqrt"(2.0). 

Andrew Christensen
FortConsult ApS
Tranevej 16-18
2400 København NV
tlf. (+45) 7020 7525

FortConsult er som de første i Skandinavien blevet certificeret af VISA og 
MasterCard til at udføre sikkerhedsgennemgange af virksomheders kritiske 
FortConsult is the only Scandinavian firm certified by VISA to perform 
security audits on critical card-payment systems. 

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