Vulnerability Note VU#386504

glibc does not check SUID bit on libraries in /etc/

Original Release date: 14 May 2001 | Last revised: 20 Jun 2001


The GNU libc library fails to perform a check for the SETUID bit for cached libraries in the /etc/ file. As a result, malicious users may create or modify privileged files.


The GNU libc library allows preloading libraries via the LD_PRELOAD environment variable, provided the entries in the variable don't contain the / character. When running a SUID program, the library also checks to ensure the library being loaded is SUID. Unfortunately, this check is skipped if the library is already in the /etc/ file.


Malicious users may pre-load libraries into the cache file, and use those libraries to create or modify privileged files.


Apply patches available from your operating system vendor; see below.

Systems Affected (Learn More)

VendorStatusDate NotifiedDate Updated
CalderaAffected23 Jan 200114 May 2001
ConectivaAffected05 Feb 200111 May 2001
DebianAffected-11 May 2001
EngardeAffected16 Jan 200115 May 2001
ImmunixAffected19 Jan 200114 May 2001
MandrakeSoftAffected18 Jan 200114 May 2001
RedHatAffected11 Jan 200114 May 2001
SuSEAffected26 Jan 200114 May 2001
TrustixAffected21 Jan 200115 May 2001
TurboLinuxAffected14 Feb 200115 May 2001
If you are a vendor and your product is affected, let us know.

CVSS Metrics (Learn More)

Group Score Vector
Base N/A N/A
Temporal N/A N/A
Environmental N/A N/A



Our thanks to Red-Hat Security for identifying this problem.

This document was last modified by Tim Shimeall

Other Information

  • CVE IDs: CAN-2001-0169
  • Date Public: 18 Jan 2001
  • Date First Published: 14 May 2001
  • Date Last Updated: 20 Jun 2001
  • Severity Metric: 11.99
  • Document Revision: 14


If you have feedback, comments, or additional information about this vulnerability, please send us email.