Adobe slates patch for Flash clipboard poisoning attacks

Adds fix in Flash 10 for flaw that's been used by scammers for more than a month

Adobe Systems last week said it will soon quash a bug in Flash that has been used for more than a month by attackers to poison Mac and Windows users' clipboards with URLs to malicious sites.

The changes will be rolled out in Flash 10, which Adobe's security program manager David Lenoe said would be released "soon." Previously, Adobe has pinned the update's release only to sometime later this year.

In August, security researchers reported malicious scripts in Flash-based ads on legitimate sites. The scripts abused the "setClipboard" command in Flash to repeatedly infect users' clipboards with URLs pushing fake security software. The scammers hoped that some of those users would paste the URL into their browser's address bar, and once at the phony software site, would be duped into purchasing the bogus program. Users on several message boards, including Apple's support forum, reported the clipboard poisoning more than a month ago.

Lenoe acknowledged the attacks in an August 19 post to Adobe's security response team's blog, but at the time said only that the company was investigating "potential solutions." Adobe, however, has not patched the current production version of Flash 9.

Friday, Lenoe pointed users to a description of the security changes being implemented in Flash 10. Among the changes, said Adobe developer Trevor McCauley, was one that will lock down the setClipboard command to prevent automated abuses. In Flash 10, the setClipboard command can be called up only through some kind of user-initiated action, such as clicking the mouse or typing on the keyboard. Remote calls of the command will be disallowed.

Adobe first unveiled a beta of Flash 10 in May, and shifted to a more polished release candidate a week ago. Flash 10 can be downloaded in its current form from Adobe's site.

It's unclear, however, if the security changes that McCauley outlined have been integrated into Flash 10's release candidate. Adobe did not immediately respond to questions about what was included in the release candidate.

Tags security patch

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Gregg Keizer

Computerworld

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Latest News Articles

Most Popular Articles

Follow Us

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Resources

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?