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SugarCRM 5.2.0e Remote Code Execution

June 13, 2009 at 6:44 pm - Filed under Hacks, Language EN - 1524 words, reading time ~5 minutes - Permalink - Comments
Some time ago we found a way to trick the email attachment validation code of SugarCRM leading to arbitrary file uploads. The bypass is quite interesting: don't give up against filename validation routines! We have to absolutely award the SugarCRM team as one of the best vendors we worked with: fast response, coordinated agenda was fully respected and nice people to speak with. No time was wasted with this release :)
SugarCRM 5.2.0e Remote Code Execution

 Name              Remote Code Execution in SugarCRM
 Systems Affected  Sugar CRM 5.2.0e and possibly earlier versions
 Severity          High
 Impact (CVSSv2)   High 8/10, vector: (AV:N/AC:L/Au:S/C:P/I:C/A:P)
 Advisory          http://www_ush_it/team/ush/hack-sugarcrm_520e/adv.txt
 Authors           Antonio "s4tan" Parata (s4tan AT ush DOT it)
                   Francesco "ascii" Ongaro (ascii AT ush DOT it)
                   Giovanni "evilaliv3" Pellerano (evilaliv3 AT ush DOT it)
 Date              20090613


From the SugarCRM web site: "Sugar Express is designed for individuals 
and small companies. Core CRM features help employees get on the same 
page while more complex functionality is stripped away. Sugar Express is
ideal for providing a single view of the customer from the initial 
marketing campaign through the sales cycle and on to customer support. 
With Sugar Express, companies have a single system of truth for managing
customer interactions.". 


A Remote Code Execution Vulnerability exists in SugarCRM software.


A Remote Code Execution issue has been found in SugarCRM version
5.2.0e. In order to exploit this vulnerability an account on the system 
is required.

The vulnerability resides in the "Compose Email" section. The software 
permits sending email with attachments (if not disabled by the 
administrator). When the name of the file is specified, a validation 
routine is called:


function safeAttachmentName($filename) {
	global $sugar_config;
	$badExtension = false;
	//get position of last "." in file name
	$file_ext_beg = strrpos($filename, ".");
	$file_ext = "";
	//get file extension
	if($file_ext_beg > 0) {
		$file_ext = substr($filename, $file_ext_beg + 1);
	//check to see if this is a file with extension located in "badext"
	foreach($sugar_config['upload_badext'] as $badExt) {
	    if(strtolower($file_ext) == strtolower($badExt)) {
	        //if found, then append with .txt and break out of lookup
	        $filename = $filename . ".txt";
	        $badExtension = true;
	        break; // no need to look for more
	    } // if
	} // foreach
	return $badExtension;


This routine checks if the extension of the filename is blacklisted, 
if so the ".txt" extension is appended to the filename. However there is
a coding error: the function assumes that the filename (extension 
excluded) is at least one char long, this assumption is derived from the


if($file_ext_beg > 0)


Of course this is a bad assumption, if we set the whole filename to 
".php" than the check is skipped and a void extension is assumed. 
Because void extensions are not in the blacklist, no futher extension 
is added to the filename. After this check a file is created on the 
filesystem in the form "<id><filename>".

Where "id" is an alphanumeric string. With the trick illustrated we are 
able to create a file with ".php" extension. To do this upload a new 
file attachment and set the filename to ".php".

After this the attacker has to find the name of the file that was 
uploaded in the attachment list files. To obtaint the real filename 
look in the HTML response for a string like:


<input value="6e25aba0-9dc4-2a57-8bae-4a1317b35d47.php" name="email_atta
chment0" id="email_attachment10" type="hidden">


The real filename in this case is "6e25aba0-9dc4-2a57-8bae-4a1317b35d47.
php". Now the attacker has to find the directory where the file resides.

Again searching the HTML page for the attribute "assigned_user_id" 
reveals the needed information:


<a href="index.php?module=Emails&action=ListView&assigned_user_id=abf7c7


At this point the attacker has all the informations to invoke the 
uploaded file.

Filename: 6e25aba0-9dc4-2a57-8bae-4a1317b35d47.php
Assigned user id: abf7c77b-2f71-8071-63ba-4a131068e9a2

To directly request it issue a request to:



As final note: if the user is "administrator", "assigned_user_id" is 
always "1".


SugarCRM 5.2.0e and possibly earlier versions are vulnerable.


Upgrade to latest version 5.2.0f


"We have fixed the issue and will be shipping the patch on June 12th.
We will be doing a full pass of quality assurance in this area to
ensure that no other issues crop up around file uploads.
The fix involves modifying the code that handles uploads for email
attachments to save the files using just a GUID rather than the original
file name. This is similar to how uploads are handled else where in the
application and should prevent the code from being executable on the
server side."


No CVE at this time.


20090519 Bug discovered
20090528 First vendor contact
20090528 Vendor Response
20090530 Vendor Confirm the vulnerability
20090602 Vendor propose a possible fix and path release
20090612 Vendor released SugarCRM 5.2.0f (Vulnerability fixed)
20090613 Advisory released


Antonio "s4tan" Parata, Francesco "ascii" Ongaro and Giovanni 
"evilaliv3" Pellerano are credited with the discovery of this 

Antonio "s4tan" Parata
web site: http://www_ush_it/
mail: s4tan AT ush DOT it

Francesco "ascii" Ongaro
web site: http://www_ush_it/
mail: ascii AT ush DOT it

Giovanni "evilaliv3" Pellerano
web site: http://www_ush_it/,
mail: evilaliv3 AT ush DOT it


Copyright (c) 2009 Francesco "ascii" Ongaro

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