SQL Injection and Oracle

Friday, 22 November 2002, 12:36 PM EST

SQL injection techniques are an increasingly dangerous threat to the security of information stored upon Oracle Databases. These techniques are being discussed with greater regularity on security mailing lists, forums, and at conferences. There have been many good papers written about SQL Injection and a few about the security of Oracle databases and software but not many that focus on SQL injection and Oracle software. This is the first article in a two-part series that will examine SQL injection attacks against Oracle databases. The objective of this series is to introduce Oracle users to some of the dangers of SQL injection and to suggest some simple ways of protecting against these types of attack.

Oracle is a huge product and SQL injection can be applied to many of its modules, languages and APIs, so this paper is intended to be an overview or introduction to the subject. This two-part series is not intended as a detailed treatise of how to SQL inject an Oracle database, nor is it intended as a detailed discussion on the finer points of the technique in general. (Details of SQL injection techniques have been covered admirably in the past for other languages and databases, particularly by Rain Forest Puppy who pioneered the subject. Some of these papers are included in the reference section at the end of this paper.) Rather, I have designed this paper so that as many readers as possible can try out the examples. To achieve this I have used a PL/SQL procedure that uses dynamic SQL to demonstrate the techniques of SQL injection from the ubiquitous SQL*Plus.

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