Exploiting Common Vulnerabilities in PHP Applications

Thursday, 26 September 2002, 1:39 AM EST

PHP has the following characteristics:
- Interpreted,
- Fast Execution - The interpreter is embedded in the web server, no fork() or setup overhead
- Feature Rich - Hundreds of non trivial builtin functions
- Simple Syntax - Non declared and loosely typed variables, 'wordy' function names

Over the course of this paper I'm going to try to explain why I feel the last two characteristics make applications written in PHP easy to attack and hard to defend. Then I'll finish off with a rant about distribution of 'blame' when it comes to software security.

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