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Date: Wed, 24 Sep 2014 18:08:21 -0400
From: Jason Cooper <>
Subject: Re: CVE-2014-6271: remote code execution through


On Wed, Sep 24, 2014 at 07:16:20PM +0400, Solar Designer wrote:
> On Wed, Sep 24, 2014 at 04:05:51PM +0200, Florian Weimer wrote:
> > Stephane Chazelas discovered a vulnerability in bash, related to how
> > environment variables are processed: trailing code in function
> > definitions was executed, independent of the variable name.
> > 
> > In many common configurations, this vulnerability is exploitable over
> > the network.
> > 
> > Chet Ramey, the GNU bash upstream maintainer, will soon release
> > official upstream patches.
> More detail is already out:
> Florian posted a Debian security advisory on this ([DSA 3032-1] bash
> security update) to the debian-security-announce list, but somehow it is
> not yet seen at:
> (I guess it will be very soon.)
> I've just confirmed that the issue can be exploited via OpenSSH setting
> $ ssh -o 'rsaauthentication yes' 0 '() { ignored; }; /usr/bin/id' 
> uid=500(sandbox) gid=500(sandbox) groups=500(sandbox)
> Received disconnect from Command terminated on signal 11.
> This is with command="set" in .ssh/authorized_keys for the key being
> used.  (Without the "; /usr/bin/id" portion, the command prints the
> environment variables, including SSH_ORIGINAL_COMMAND being the function
> with just "ignored" in its body.)  As we can see, the command runs, and
> moreover in this case bash happened to segfault after having run "id".
> I see no good workaround.  Starting the forced command with "unset
> SSH_ORIGINAL_COMMAND &&" does not help - we'd need to unset the variable
> before starting bash, not from bash.

I wrote some code a while ago to automate git push via single-purpose
ssh keys. [1]  By design, it wipes the environment, sets vars found in
the config, and accepts only configured commands for
SSH_ORIGINAL_COMMAND.  I've tested the latest HEAD against this attack,
and it appears to mitigate it:

[jason@...alhost] $ ssh -i .ssh/test_key -o 'rsaauthentication yes' 0 '() { ignored; }; /usr/bin/id'
uid=1000(jason) gid=1000(jason) groups=1000(jason)
[jason@...alhost] $ # add 'command=/path/to/secsh -f /path/to/test.rc' in .ssh/authorized_keys on server
[jason@...alhost] $ ssh -i .ssh/test_key -o 'rsaauthentication yes' 0 '() { ignored; }; /usr/bin/id'
secsh v0.8-rc1-2-ga86f09832fa2: access denied.

Please note: While published, it has had little to no outside review;
assistance/patches appreciated.

Theoretically, you could set 'cmd /bin/bash' in the secsh config file
and it would automatically wipe the environment.  I have *not*
thoroughly explored the security implications of this configuration.
It's not what secsh was designed for.  Comments welcome.

The correct answer is to upgrade bash.  After that, secsh may be a
useful addition to a system's security posture.

I've appended the readme below.




--- secsh README --------------------->8---------------------------------------


[secsh][1] - a small program to sanitize and filter commands received via ssh
single-purpose keys


The other day I set out to find a way to restrict git push access to a given
repository on a per ssh key basis.  I could've just used single-purpose ssh
keys and copied the rsync solution on the net:

    "Handling backups" near the bottom

I've reproduced the script here:


	    *\&* | *\;* | *\|*)
	        echo "Access denied"
	    rsync\ --server*)
	        echo "Access denied"

But there are a few problems with this.  First, it executes a shell, and we
don't need to.  That's a pretty large, unnecessary attack surface.  Second, it
blacklists a few bad ascii characters and then allows anything starting with
'rsync --server'.  I much prefer to whitelist.

I decided to try my hand at writing secure code.  That small pop you heard
behind you is the sound of the universe imploding. ;-)


The result of this feeble attempt is secsh.  You basically add an ssh public
key to your ~/.ssh/authorized_keys file, and pre-pend the following:

command="/home/jason/bin/secsh -f /home/jason/.secsh/test.rc",no-port-forwarding,no-X11-forwarding,no-agent-forwarding,no-pty ssh-rsa...

~/.secsh/test.rc (or whatever you want to name it) should have something like
the following:

	# secsh example configuration file
	# comments and blank lines ignored

	# iff secsh was compiled with DEBUG, you can use the following for determining
	# what funky command was sent by the client.  I could've used this figuring out
	# rsync :)
	# To use it, set a file name here, touch the file, and attempt to connect.
	# The raw buffer containing the command that was sent will be written to the
	# file.
	# Note: secsh will only write to the file if all the conditions are met:
	#  - file must exist
	#  - it must *only* be a regular file
	#  - not executable
	#  - not hardlinked
	#  - must be empty (that means you _must_ truncate it each time you want to
	#      record the attempted command.)
	# Also, the config file parser will only accept the first declaration of this
	# option.  So, you may want to set this if DEBUG is enabled.  It depends on how
	# likely it is that someone could append a line to your config.
	#debug_file /home/user/.secsh/attempted_command

	# If it isn't specified here, it doesn't exist
	#env HOME=/home/user
	#env USER=user
	env PATH=/usr/bin:/bin

	# git example
	#cmd git-receive-pack '/path/to/linux.git'

	# rsync example (set HOME and USER)
	#cmd rsync --server -vulogDtprce.iLsf --delete . path/to/top/

For git in particular, the single quotes around the path to the repo are
needed.  secsh is stupid simple.  If the value of $SSH_ORIGINAL_COMMAND matches
the rest of the config line after 'cmd ' then it works.  Otherwise, access

The example rsync command is what we receive when the client does:

	$ rsync -avu --delete --rsh="ssh" top/ hostname:path/to/top/


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