Mozilla released a series of security updates for its Firefox and Mozilla 1.7 browsers yesterday that resolve the first security vulnerabilities to come from the Mozilla Foundation's Security Bug Bounty Program. Its Thunderbird email client also needs patching for similar reasons.
The total of 10 vulns discovered are described by security firm Secunia as "highly critical" - and with good reason. Attack scenarios opened up by the flaws include cross-site scripting attacks, access or modification of sensitive information and (in the worst case) the complete compromise of a user's system. Not good. Users are advised to upgrade to Mozilla 1.7.3, Firefox 1.0PR and Thunderbird 0.8 from earlier versions to protect themselves against attack.
The bugs have been discovered and patched only one month after the introduction of the Mozilla Foundation's Security Bug Bounty Program. Security researchers who discovered critical flaws in software released by the open source project are being offered a token sum of $500 in recognition for their efforts. Participants in the programme included veteran IE bug-hunter Georgi Guninski.
Gaël Delalleau, of Zencom Secure Solutions, one of the group of researchers who found critical bugs, said that he found three flaws during the course of auditing parts of the Mozilla 1.7.2 C++ source code tree during his free time.
"Although not 100 per cent verified, it is very likely some of these critical security bugs are also exploitable in other products based on Mozilla, like Netscape 7 and Galeon," he writes. "Users of such products should ask vendors for a patch, and meanwhile apply the workarounds described on the 'Known Vulnerabilities in Mozilla' page". ®