Name Query System for Information
Summary An adversary, aware of an application's location (and possibly authorized to use the application), probes an application's structure and evaluates its robustness by submitting requests and examining responses. Often, this is accomplished by sending variants of expected queries in the hope that these modified queries might return information beyond what the expected set of queries would provide.
Prerequisites This class of attacks does not strictly require authorized access to the application. As Attackers use this attack process to classify, map, and identify vulnerable aspects of an application, it simply requires hypotheses to be verified, interaction with the application, and time to conduct trial-and-error activities.
Solutions Application designers can construct a 'code book' for error messages. When using a code book, application error messages aren't generated in string or stack trace form, but are cataloged and replaced with a unique (often integer-based) value 'coding' for the error. Such a technique will require helpdesk and hosting personnel to use a 'code book' or similar mapping to decode application errors/logs in order to respond to them normally. Application designers can wrap application functionality (preferably through the underlying framework) in an output encoding scheme that obscures or cleanses error messages to prevent such attacks. Such a technique is often used in conjunction with the above 'code book' suggestion.
Related Weaknesses
CWE ID Description
CWE-209 Generation of Error Message Containing Sensitive Information
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