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October 19, 2005
Symantec LiveUpdate for Macintosh Local Privilege Escalation

Revision History

Risk Impact

Remote AccessNo
Local AccessYes
Authentication RequiredYes
Exploit publicly availableNo

Symantec LiveUpdate for Macintosh is partially implemented in the Java programming language. The interface to the java interpreter takes input from the LiveUpdate component as command line arguments and passes them to the Java interpreter. This interface is configured to run with System Administrative privileges (SUID). A local user can use the LiveUpdate Java interface to execute Java code with System Administrative rights.

Affected Product(s)

LiveUpdate for Macintosh3.0.0AllAllLive Update Patch
Norton AntiVirus9.0.xAllAll
Norton AntiVirus10.0.0AllAll
Norton AntiVirus10.0.1AllAll
Norton Personal Firewall3.0.xAllAll
Norton Personal Firewall3.1.0AllAll
Norton Internet Security3.0.xAllAll
Norton Utilities8.0.xAllAll
Norton SystemWorks3.0.xAllAll

Not Affected Product(s)

Symantec AntiVirus for Macintosh10AllAll

Symantec Response
A patch has been created and made available for all affected version of the product through Symantec LiveUpdate.

To perform a manual update using Symantec LiveUpdate, users should:

  • Open any installed Symantec product
  • Click on LiveUpdate in the toolbar
  • Run LiveUpdate until all available Symantec product updates are downloaded and installed
Symantec is not aware of any active attempts against or customers impacted by this issue.

As a part of normal best practices, users should keep vendor-supplied patches for all application software and operating systems up-to-date. Symantec strongly recommends any affected customers update their product immediately to protect against these types of threats.

The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) initiative has assigned CVE Candidate CVE-2005-2759 to this issue.

This issue is a candidate for inclusion in the CVE list (http://cve.mitre.org), which standardizes names for security problems.

Symantec thanks iDefense, for notification of this issue and coordinating disclosure as it was resolved.

Symantec takes the security and proper functionality of our products very seriously. As founding members of the Organization for Internet Safety (OISafety), Symantec supports and follows the principles of responsible disclosure. Symantec also subscribes to the vulnerability disclosure guidelines outlined by the National Infrastructure Advisory Council (NIAC).

Please contact secure@symantec.com if you feel you have discovered a security issue in a Symantec product. A Symantec Product Security team member will contact you regarding your submission. Symantec strongly recommends using encrypted email for reporting vulnerability information to secure@symantec.com. The Symantec Product Security PGP key can be found at the end of this message.

Symantec has developed a Product Vulnerability Response document outlining the process we follow in addressing suspected vulnerabilities in our products. This document is available below.

PDF Symantec Vulnerability Response Policy PGP Symantec Product Vulnerability Management PGP Key

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Permission to redistribute this alert electronically is granted as long as it is not edited in any way unless authorized by Symantec Security Response. Reprinting the whole or part of this alert in any medium other than electronically requires permission from secure@symantec.com.

The information in the advisory is believed to be accurate at the time of publishing based on currently available information. Use of the information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS condition. There are no warranties with regard to this information. Neither the author nor the publisher accepts any liability for any direct, indirect, or consequential loss or damage arising from use of, or reliance on, this information.

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Initial Post on: Wednesday, 19-Oct-05 16:40:00
Last modified on: Monday, 24-Oct-05 13:09:27