Synaesthesia configuration file symlink attack

synaesthesia-configuration-symlink-attack (15279) The risk level is classified as MediumMedium Risk


Synaesthesia could allow a local attacker to gain elevated privileges. The configuration file is created with root privileges and has writable permission by the user's primary group. A local attacker can create a symbolic link for a file on the system to the configuration file. When the application is run, the symlinked file will be created. Because the file has writable permissions, the attacker can modify the file to contain code, allowing the attacker to execute arbitrary code on the system with root privileges.


File Manipulation


For Debian GNU/Linux 3.0 (woody):
Upgrade to the latest synaesthesia package (2.1-2.1woody1.dsc or later), as listed in DSA-446-1. See References.


  • BID-12546: Synaesthesia Local File Disclosure Vulnerability
  • BID-9713: Synaesthesia Insecure File Creation Vulnerability
  • CVE-2004-0160: Synaesthesia 2.2 and earlier allows local users to execute arbitrary code via a symlink attack on the configuration file.
  • DSA-446: synaesthesia -- insecure file creation
  • OSVDB ID: 4023: Synaesthesia Privilege Escalation

Platforms Affected:

  • Debian Debian Linux 3.0
  • UK Synaesthesia Association Synaesthesia 2.2 and prior


Feb 21, 2004

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