GNU gettext default_add_message Double-Free Vulnerability [CVE-2018-18751]

CVE Number –  CVE-2018-18751

A vulnerability in the default_add_message function of GNU gettext could allow a local attacker to cause a denial of service (DoS) condition on a targeted system.

The vulnerability is due to a double-free condition that exists in the default_add_message function, as defined in the read-catalog.c source code file of the affected software, and is related to an invalid-free condition in the po_gram_parse function, in the po-gram-gen.y source code file. An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by executing the msgfmt –check command on a file that submits malicious input to the targeted system. A successful exploit could result in a DoS condition.

Proof-of-concept (PoC) code that demonstrates an exploit of this vulnerability is publicly available. has not confirmed the vulnerability, and software updates are not available.

  • To exploit this vulnerability, the attacker must have user-level access to the targeted system. This access requirement may reduce the likelihood of a successful exploit.
  • Administrators are advised to contact the vendor regarding future updates and releases.

    Administrators are advised to allow only trusted users to access local systems.

    Administrators are advised to allow only privileged users to access administration or management systems.

    Administrators are advised to monitor critical systems.

Vendor Announcements
  • At the time this alert was first published, had not released a security announcement.
Fixed Software
  • At the time this alert was first published, had not released software updates

Duncan Newell

Duncan is a technology professional with over 20 years experience of working in various IT roles. He has a interest in cyber security, and has a wide range of other skills in radio, electronics and telecommunications.

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