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Re: [Full-disclosure] Next generation malware: Windows Vista's gadget API

From: Roger A. Grimes (rogerbanneretcs.com)
Date: Fri Sep 14 2007 - 14:56:19 CDT

Yes, this is a "new" attack vector, but it is always game over anyway if
I can get you to run my untrusted program. In my testing, installing
any Vista sidebar gadget results in a minimum of 3 warnings, each saying
that the code being installed could be harmful, before it is installed.
5 warnings if the gadget is unsigned.

It's something to be aware of, because malicious hackers will exploit
them, and many end-users will ignore any warning, but not the most
worrisome problem on my plate. Secondly, I can completely control the
install of any gadgets in my environment using Active Directory group
policies to a granular level.


*Roger A. Grimes, Senior Security Consultant
*Microsoft Application Consulting and Engineering (ACE) Services
*CPA, CISSP, CISA MCSE: Security (2000/2003), CEH, yada...yada...
*email: rogerbanneretcs.com or rogrimmicrosoft.com
*Author of Windows Vista Security: Security Vista Against Malicious
Attacks (Wiley)

-----Original Message-----
From: Tim Brown [mailto:tmb65535.com]
Sent: Thursday, September 13, 2007 5:17 AM
To: vuln-devsecurityfocus.com; webappsecsecurityfocus.com;
full-disclosurelists.grok.org.uk; bugtraqsecurityfocus.com;
Subject: Next generation malware: Windows Vista's gadget API

A paper has just been released on the Windows Vista's gadget API. The
abstract is as follows:

Windows has had the ability to embed HTML into it's user interface for
many years. Right back to and including Windows NT 4.0, it has been
possible to embed HTML into the task bar, but the OS has always
maintained a sandbox, from which the HTML has been unable to escape. All
this changes with Windows Vista. This paper seeks to inform system
administrators, users and the wider community on both potential attack
vectors using gadgets and the mitigations provided by Windows Vista.

The full paper can be found at

Tim Brown

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