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SubjectRe: [PATCH v2012.2] fs: symlink restrictions on sticky directories
From
On Fri, Feb 17, 2012 at 3:24 PM, Andrew Morton
<akpm@linux-foundation.org> wrote:
> On Sat, 7 Jan 2012 10:55:48 -0800
> Kees Cook <keescook@chromium.org> wrote:
>
>> A long-standing class of security issues is the symlink-based
>> time-of-check-time-of-use race, most commonly seen in world-writable
>> directories like /tmp. The common method of exploitation of this flaw
>> is to cross privilege boundaries when following a given symlink (i.e. a
>> root process follows a symlink belonging to another user). For a likely
>> incomplete list of hundreds of examples across the years, please see:
>> http://cve.mitre.org/cgi-bin/cvekey.cgi?keyword=/tmp
>>
>> The solution is to permit symlinks to only be followed when outside
>> a sticky world-writable directory, or when the uid of the symlink and
>> follower match, or when the directory owner matches the symlink's owner.
>>
>> Some pointers to the history of earlier discussion that I could find:
>>
>>  1996 Aug, Zygo Blaxell
>>   http://marc.info/?l=bugtraq&m=87602167419830&w=2
>>  1996 Oct, Andrew Tridgell
>>   http://lkml.indiana.edu/hypermail/linux/kernel/9610.2/0086.html
>>  1997 Dec, Albert D Cahalan
>>   http://lkml.org/lkml/1997/12/16/4
>>  2005 Feb, Lorenzo Hern__ndez Garc__a-Hierro
>>   http://lkml.indiana.edu/hypermail/linux/kernel/0502.0/1896.html
>>  2010 May, Kees Cook
>>   https://lkml.org/lkml/2010/5/30/144
>>
>> Past objections and rebuttals could be summarized as:
>>
>>  - Violates POSIX.
>>    - POSIX didn't consider this situation and it's not useful to follow
>>      a broken specification at the cost of security.
>>  - Might break unknown applications that use this feature.
>>    - Applications that break because of the change are easy to spot and
>>      fix. Applications that are vulnerable to symlink ToCToU by not having
>>      the change aren't. Additionally, no applications have yet been found
>>      that rely on this behavior.
>>  - Applications should just use mkstemp() or O_CREATE|O_EXCL.
>>    - True, but applications are not perfect, and new software is written
>>      all the time that makes these mistakes; blocking this flaw at the
>>      kernel is a single solution to the entire class of vulnerability.
>>  - This should live in the core VFS.
>>    - This should live in an LSM. (https://lkml.org/lkml/2010/5/31/135)
>>  - This should live in an LSM.
>>    - This should live in the core VFS. (https://lkml.org/lkml/2010/8/2/188)
>>
>> This patch is based on the patch in Openwall and grsecurity, along with
>> suggestions from Al Viro. I have added a sysctl to enable the protected
>> behavior, documentation, and an audit notification.
>
> Looks reasonable to me.
>
> It's a viropatch.  I shall merge it into 3.4-rc1 if nothing happens to
> prevent that.

Thanks!

>> +config PROTECTED_STICKY_SYMLINKS
>> +     bool "Evaluate vulnerable symlink conditions"
>> +     default y
>> +     help
>> +       A long-standing class of security issues is the symlink-based
>> +       time-of-check-time-of-use race, most commonly seen in
>> +       world-writable directories like /tmp. The common method of
>> +       exploitation of this flaw is to cross privilege boundaries
>> +       when following a given symlink (i.e. a root process follows
>> +       a malicious symlink belonging to another user).
>> +
>> +       Enabling this adds the logic to examine these dangerous symlink
>> +       conditions. Whether or not the dangerous symlink situations are
>> +       allowed is controlled by PROTECTED_STICKY_SYMLINKS_ENABLED.
>> +
>> +config PROTECTED_STICKY_SYMLINKS_ENABLED
>> +     depends on PROTECTED_STICKY_SYMLINKS
>> +     bool "Disallow symlink following in sticky world-writable dirs"
>> +     default y
>> +     help
>> +       Solve ToCToU symlink race vulnerablities by permitting symlinks
>> +       to be followed only when outside a sticky world-writable directory,
>> +       or when the uid of the symlink and follower match, or when the
>> +       directory and symlink owners match.
>> +
>> +       When PROC_SYSCTL is enabled, this setting can also be controlled
>> +       via /proc/sys/kernel/protected_sticky_symlinks.
>
> I think I disagree with this.  If the person compiling the kernel
> includes the feature in his kernel via the time-honoured process of
> "wtf is that thing?  Yeah, whatev", it gets turned on by default.  This
> could easily result in weird failures which would take a *long* time
> for an unsuspecting person to debug.
>
> Would it not be kinder to our users to start this out as
> turned-off-at-runtime unless the kernel configurer has deliberately
> gone in and enabled it?

There was a fair bit of back-and-forth discussion about it.
Originally, I had it disabled, but, IIRC, Ingo urged me to have it be
the default. I can sent a patch to disable it if you want.

>> --- a/kernel/sysctl.c
>> +++ b/kernel/sysctl.c
>> @@ -109,6 +109,9 @@ extern int sysctl_nr_trim_pages;
>>  #ifdef CONFIG_BLOCK
>>  extern int blk_iopoll_enabled;
>>  #endif
>> +#ifdef CONFIG_PROTECTED_STICKY_SYMLINKS
>> +extern int sysctl_protected_sticky_symlinks;
>> +#endif
>>
>
> Grumble.  Yes, it's a site of much badness.  Let's not worsen things.
>
> From: Andrew Morton <akpm@linux-foundation.org>
> Subject: fs-symlink-restrictions-on-sticky-directories-fix
>
> move sysctl_protected_sticky_symlinks declaration into .h
>
> Cc: Kees Cook <keescook@chromium.org>
> Signed-off-by: Andrew Morton <akpm@linux-foundation.org>
>
> --- a/kernel/sysctl.c~fs-symlink-restrictions-on-sticky-directories-fix
> +++ a/kernel/sysctl.c
> @@ -109,9 +109,6 @@ extern int sysctl_nr_trim_pages;
>  #ifdef CONFIG_BLOCK
>  extern int blk_iopoll_enabled;
>  #endif
> -#ifdef CONFIG_PROTECTED_STICKY_SYMLINKS
> -extern int sysctl_protected_sticky_symlinks;
> -#endif
>
>  /* Constants used for minimum and  maximum */
>  #ifdef CONFIG_LOCKUP_DETECTOR
> --- a/include/linux/fs.h~fs-symlink-restrictions-on-sticky-directories-fix
> +++ a/include/linux/fs.h
> @@ -422,6 +422,7 @@ extern unsigned long get_max_files(void)
>  extern int sysctl_nr_open;
>  extern struct inodes_stat_t inodes_stat;
>  extern int leases_enable, lease_break_time;
> +extern int sysctl_protected_sticky_symlinks;
>
>  struct buffer_head;
>  typedef int (get_block_t)(struct inode *inode, sector_t iblock,

Ah, sure. That works for me. Thanks!

-Kees

--
Kees Cook
ChromeOS Security
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