Common Attack Pattern Enumeration and Classification
A Community Resource for Identifying and Understanding Attacks
An attacker who is authorized to send queries to a target sends variants of expected queries in the hope that these modified queries might return information (directly or indirectly through error logs) beyond what the expected set of queries should provide. Many client applications use specific query templates when interacting with a server and often automatically fill in specific fields or attributes. For example, a client that queries an employee database might have templates such that the user only supplies the target's name and the template dictates the fields to be returned (location, position in the company, phone number, etc.). If the server does not verify that the query matches one of the expected templates, an attacker who is allowed to send normal queries could modify their query to try to return additional information. In the above example, additional information might include social security numbers or salaries. Fuzzing techniques involve sending random or malformed messages to a target and monitoring the target's response. In this particular attack, the fuzzing is applied to the format of the expected templates, creating variants that request additional information, exclude limiting clauses, or alter fields that identify the requester in order to subvert access controls. The attacker may not know the names of fields to request or how other modifications will affect the server response, but by attempting multiple plausible variants, they might eventually trigger a server response that divulges sensitive information. Other possible outcomes include server crashes and resource consumption if the unexpected queries cause the server to enter an unstable state or perform excessive computation.
The table below shows the other attack patterns and high level categories that are related to this attack pattern. These relationships are defined as ChildOf and ParentOf, and give insight to similar items that may exist at higher and lower levels of abstraction. In addition, relationships such as CanFollow, PeerOf, and CanAlsoBe are defined to show similar attack patterns that the user may want to explore.
The table below shows the views that this attack pattern belongs to and top level categories within that view.
The attacker must have sufficient privileges to send queries to the targeted server. A normal client might limit the nature of these queries, so the attacker must either have a modified client or their own application which allows them to modify the expected queries.
A Related Weakness relationship associates a weakness with this attack pattern. Each association implies a weakness that must exist for a given attack to be successful. If multiple weaknesses are associated with the attack pattern, then any of the weaknesses (but not necessarily all) may be present for the attack to be successful. Each related weakness is identified by a CWE identifier.
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