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Alert (TA11-166A)

Adobe Updates for Multiple Vulnerabilities

Original release date: June 15, 2011 | Last revised: January 24, 2013

Systems Affected

  • Adobe Reader X (10.0.1) and earlier 10.x versions for Windows
  • Adobe Reader X (10.0.3) and earlier 10.x versions for Macintosh
  • Adobe Reader 9.4.4 and earlier 9.x versions for Windows and Macintosh
  • Adobe Reader 8.2.6 and earlier 8.x versions for Windows and Macintosh
  • Adobe Acrobat X (10.0.3) and earlier 10.x versions for Windows and Macintosh
  • Adobe Acrobat 9.4.4 and earlier 9.x versions for Windows and Macintosh
  • Adobe Acrobat 8.2.6 and earlier 8.x versions for Windows and Macintosh
  • Shockwave Player 11.5.9.620 and earlier versions for Windows and Macintosh.
  • Adobe Flash Player 10.3.181.23 and earlier versions for Windows, Macintosh, Linux and Solaris operating systems
  • Adobe Flash Player 10.3.185.23 and earlier versions for Android

Overview

Adobe has released Security Bulletin APSB11-16, which describes multiple vulnerabilities affecting Adobe Reader and Acrobat.

Adobe has released Security Bulletin APSB11-17, which describes multiple vulnerabilities affecting Adobe Shockwave Player.

Adobe has released Security Bulletin APSB11-18, which describes multiple vulnerabilities affecting Adobe Flash Player.

Description

Adobe Security Bulletin APSB11-16 describes a number of vulnerabilities affecting Adobe Reader and Acrobat. These vulnerabilities affect Reader and Acrobat 9.3.4, earlier 9.x versions, 8.2.6, and earlier 8.x versions. These vulnerabilities also affect Reader X and Acrobat X 10.0.3, 10.0.1, and earlier 10.x versions.

An attacker could exploit these vulnerabilities by convincing a user to open a specially crafted PDF file. The Adobe Reader browser plug-in, which can automatically open PDF documents hosted on a website, is available for multiple web browsers and operating systems.

Adobe Security Bulletin APSB11-17 describes a number of vulnerabilities affecting Adobe Shockwave Player. These vulnerabilities affect Shockwave Player 11.5.9.620 and earlier versions.

An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by convincing a user to open specially crafted Shockwave content. Shockwave content is commonly hosted on a web page, but it can also be embedded in PDF and other documents or provided as a stand-alone file.

Adobe Security Bulletin APSB11-18 describes a number of vulnerabilities affecting Adobe Flash Player. These vulnerabilities affect Flash Player 10.3.181.23 and earlier versionsfor Windows, Macintosh, Linux and Solaris operating systems. These vulnerabilities also affect Flash Player 10.3.185.23 and earlier versions for Android.

An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by convincing a user to open specially crafted Flash content. Flash content is commonly hosted on a web page, but it can also be embedded in PDF and other documents or provided as a stand-alone file.

Impact

These vulnerabilities could allow a remote attacker to execute arbitrary code, write arbitrary files or folders to the file system, escalate local privileges, or cause a denial of service on an affected system as the result of a user opening a malicious PDF file.

If a user opens specially crafted Shockwave content, a remote attacker may be able to execute arbitrary code.

If a user opens specially crafted Flash content, a remote attacker may be able to execute arbitrary code.

Solution

Update Reader

Adobe has released updates to address this issue. Users are encouraged to read Adobe Security Bulletin APSB11-16 and update vulnerable versions of Adobe Reader and Acrobat.

Update Adobe Shockwave Player

Adobe has released updates to address this issue. Users are encouraged to read Adobe Security Bulletin APSB11-17 and update vulnerable versions of Adobe Shockwave Player.

Update Adobe Flash Player

Adobe has released updates to address this issue. Users are encouraged to read Adobe Security Bulletin APSB11-18 and update vulnerable versions of Adobe Adobe Flash Player.

Disable Flash in your web browser

Uninstall Flash or restrict which sites are allowed to run Flash. To the extent possible, only run trusted Flash content on trusted domains. For more information, see Securing Your Web Browser.

Disable Flash in Adobe Reader and Acrobat

Disabling Flash in Adobe Reader will mitigate attacks that rely on Flash content embedded in a PDF file. Disabling 3D & Multimedia support does not directly address the vulnerability, but it does provide additional mitigation and results in a more user-friendly error message instead of a crash. To disable Flash and 3D & Multimedia support in Adobe Reader 9, delete, rename, or remove access to these files:

Microsoft Windows
"%ProgramFiles%\Adobe\Reader 9.0\Reader\authplay.dll"
"%ProgramFiles%\Adobe\Reader 9.0\Reader\rt3d.dll"

Apple Mac OS X
"/Applications/Adobe Reader 9/Adobe Reader.app/Contents/Frameworks/AuthPlayLib.bundle"
"/Applications/Adobe Reader 9/Adobe Reader.app/Contents/Frameworks/Adobe3D.framework"

GNU/Linux (locations may vary among distributions)
"/opt/Adobe/Reader9/Reader/intellinux/lib/libauthplay.so"
"/opt/Adobe/Reader9/Reader/intellinux/lib/librt3d.so"

File locations may be different for Adobe Acrobat or other Adobe products that include Flash and 3D & Multimedia support. Disabling these plugins will reduce functionality and will not protect against Flash content hosted on websites. Depending on the update schedule for products other than Flash Player, consider leaving Flash and 3D & Multimedia support disabled unless they are absolutely required.

Disable JavaScript in Adobe Reader and Acrobat

Disabling JavaScript may prevent some exploits from resulting in code execution. Acrobat JavaScript can be disabled using the Preferences menu (Edit -> Preferences -> JavaScript; uncheck Enable Acrobat JavaScript).

Adobe provides a framework to blacklist specific JavaScipt APIs. If JavaScript must be enabled, this feature may be useful when specific APIs are known to be vulnerable or used in attacks.

Prevent Internet Explorer from automatically opening PDF files

The installer for Adobe Reader and Acrobat configures Internet Explorer to automatically open PDF files without any user interaction. This behavior can be reverted to a safer option that prompts the user by importing the following as a .REG file:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\AcroExch.Document.7]
"EditFlags"=hex:00,00,00,00

Disable the display of PDF files in the web browser

Preventing PDF files from opening inside a web browser will partially mitigate this vulnerability. If this workaround is applied, it may also mitigate future vulnerabilities.

To prevent PDF files from automatically being opened in a web browser, do the following:

1. Open Adobe Acrobat Reader.
2. Open the Edit menu.
3. Choose the Preferences option.
4. Choose the Internet section.
5. Uncheck the "Display PDF in browser" checkbox.

Do not access PDF files from untrusted sources

Do not open unfamiliar or unexpected PDF files, particularly those hosted on websites or delivered as email attachments. Please see Cyber Security Tip ST04-010.

References

Revisions

  • June 15, 2011: Updated

This product is provided subject to this Notification and this Privacy & Use policy.

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