Cross Site Request Forgery is another attack vector that can be exploited through RSS feeds. If a feed is injected with certain HTML tags like or any other tags that allow cross domain calls, these calls replay the cookie causing a CSRF exploit to be run. CSRF attacks expand possibilities for exploits to be run on financial applications that are vulnerable. An attacker has greater opportunity since the target set and scope is defined.
Consider a financial portal for banking operations application that runs with an RSS feed reader component. This component has a set of applications for trading and other services running on different domains. One of these domain applications is vulnerable to CSRF and shares the “single sign on” methods either by cookie or by a common database access. In this case, an attacker can craft an RSS feed in a way that is best suited for CSRF exploitation over broad range CSRF exploit distribution for maximum effect. Targeting RSS feed readers can help in leveraging this attack vector when the end user can be identified.
SQL injection for RSS feed manipulation
Usually SQL injection is a synchronous attack vector directed at Web applications. In a SQL Injection attack, an attacker sends a particular payload and observes the response. If responses conform to SQL injection success signatures then the situation can be exploited further.
Now, new applications provide RSS feeds for your customized needs. For example, RSS feeds for the last 10 transactions or statements for a particular period, etc. All these parameters can be supplied by the end user and will be used to craft the SQL query for the RSS feed generation program. If RSS feed generation program is vulnerable to a SQL injection, a SQL payload can be crafted and passed to the RSS feed to cause an asynchronous SQL injection attack. This attack gets successful over time when this feed generator program runs the user request and builds a customized RSS feed for the client, leading to unauthorized information access. A proper code review of the RSS feed generation routine is a must to prevent this attack; this attack vector is asynchronous and difficult to identify using a black box approach.
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