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Date: Sun, 25 Sep 2011 18:38:40 +0200
From: Rasmus Lerdorf <>
To: Pierre Joye <>
CC: Zeev Suraski <>, Vincent Danen <>, 
 "" <>,
 "" <>, 
 Stas Malyshev <>
Subject: Re: CVE request: is_a() function may allow arbitrary code execution
 in PHP 5.3.7/5.3.8

On 09/25/2011 04:10 PM, Pierre Joye wrote:
> On Sun, Sep 25, 2011 at 3:47 PM, Zeev Suraski <> wrote:
>> There aren't any security issues in PHP in that context.  Assigning a CVE to PHP in that context would create the impression that there is indeed an issue in PHP here.
>> It's not a matter of who's 'guilty' in terms of positioning - but in terms of where the actual security issue resides.  And it does not reside in PHP.
>> So I agree with Stas, it doesn't make sense to have a CVE here.  Otherwise, almost every change we make, including bug fixes, could somehow result in some faulty piece of code somewhere becoming vulnerable to something.
> The whole point is that some code was not having any issue before this
> change. If the check was done earlier using is_a then this unexpected
> behavior will happen, and that actually causes a security issue in
> existing working code. The example in the blog post is very good one,
> it clearly shows that the impact on existing code is not only about
> wrongly implemented autoloader, or someone not disabling
> allow_url_fopen (I can imagine local file include being an issue as
> well under some circumstances).
> All in all, there is no shame or bad image to get a new CVE for
> something like that, I even see it as a good thing as it will:

I didn't read the thread from the beginning, but is there an actual
exploit here? Presumably the autoloader code in question isn't doing an
fopen/eval to execute the code and since allow_url_include is disabled
by default, remote includes aren't an issue in the default install. So
are we talking about the tiny number of people who have explicitly
enabled allow_url_include and are running the code with this bad autoloader?


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