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Hewlett-Packard Virtual Vault OS (VVOS) contains vulnerability in mkacct program

Vulnerability Note VU#420475

Original Release Date: 2001-08-15 | Last Revised: 2001-08-17


There is a vulnerability in the /sbin/mkacct program, part of Hewlett Packard's Virtual Vault Operating System (VVOS).


Virtual Vault is an environment "designed for use in the financial services, telecommunications, manufacturing, and retail industries to provide services such as Internet banking, online billing systems, and electronic commerce," built on top of a "security hardened version of the HP-UX operating system." A vulnerability in the /sbin/mkacct program could allow an intruder to gain "unauthorized privileged access." No other details are available. Specifically, it is unknown if an intruder can exploit this vulnerability remotely in some way. For more information, see HP Security Bulletin #0161.


According to Hewlett Packard, an intruder can gain, "unauthorized privileged access."


Apply the patches listed below from Hewlett Packard:

VirtualVault 4.0: PHSS_24169
VirtualVault 4.5: PHSS_24212

Vendor Information


Hewlett Packard Affected

Updated:  August 17, 2001



Vendor Statement

Document ID:  HPSBUX0107-161
Date Loaded:  20010718
     Title:  Sec. Vulnerability in VVOS mkacct


The information in the following Security Bulletin should be acted upon
as soon as possible.  Hewlett-Packard Company will not be liable for any
consequences to any customer resulting from customer's failure to fully
implement instructions in this Security Bulletin as soon as possible.

PROBLEM:  Security Vulnerability in mkacct program.

PLATFORM: HP9000 Servers running HP-UX 11.04 (VVOS), VirtualVault only.

DAMAGE:   Potential unauthorized privileged access.

SOLUTION: Install the appropriate patch for the VirtualVault release:
            VirtualVault 4.0               PHSS_24169,
            VirtualVault 4.5               PHSS_24212.

AVAILABILITY:  The patches are available now.

I.    Background
     Hewlett-Packard Company has discovered that the /sbin/mkacct
     program incorrectly performs its functions, with a potential
     to allow unauthorized privileged access.

II.   Recommended solution
     Application of the appropriate patch selected from the list below
     completely solves this problem.

      For VirtualVault releases:
            VirtualVault 4.0               PHSS_24169,
            VirtualVault 4.5               PHSS_24212.

III. To subscribe to automatically receive future NEW HP Security
    Bulletins from the HP IT Resource Center via electronic mail,
    do the following:

     Use your browser to get to the HP IT Resource Center page

     Use the 'Login' tab at the left side of the screen to login
    using your ID and password.

     Use the 'Login' tab at the left side of the screen to login
    using your ID and password.  Use your existing login or the
    "Register" button at the left to create a login, in order to
    gain access to many areas of the ITRC.  Remember to save the
    User ID assigned to you, and your password.

     Under the "Notifications" section (near the bottom of the
    page), select "Support Information Digests".

     To -subscribe- to future HP Security Bulletins or other
    Technical Digests, click the check box (in the left column)
    for the appropriate digest and then click the "Update
    Subscriptions" button at the bottom of the page.


     To -review- bulletins already released, select the link
    (in the middle column) for the appropriate digest.

     To -gain access- to the Security Patch Matrix, select
    the link for "hp security bulletins archive" near the bottom.
    Once in the archive the top link is to our current Security
    Patch Matrix.  Updated daily, this matrix categorizes security
    patches by platform/OS release, and by bulletin topic.

     The security patch matrix is also available via anonymous ftp:

     On the "Support Information Digest Main" page:
    click on the "HP Security Bulletin Archive".

IV.  To report new security vulnerabilities, send email to

     Please encrypt any exploit information using the security-alert
    PGP key, available from your local key server, or by sending a
    message with a -subject- (not body) of 'get key' (no quotes) to

     Permission is granted for copying and circulating this Bulletin
    to Hewlett-Packard (HP) customers (or the Internet community)
    for the purpose of alerting them to problems, if and only if,
    the Bulletin is not edited or changed in any way, is attributed
    to HP, and provided such reproduction and/or distribution is
    performed for non-commercial purposes.

     Any other use of this information is prohibited. HP is not
    liable for any misuse of this information by any third party.
-----End of Document ID:  HPSBUX0107-161--------------------------------------

Vendor Information

The vendor has not provided us with any further information regarding this vulnerability.


The CERT/CC has no additional comments at this time.

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

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Thanks to Hewlett Packard for the information contained in their advisory.

This document was written by Shawn V. Hernan.

Other Information

CVE IDs: CVE-2001-1264
Severity Metric: 11.95
Date Public: 2001-07-19
Date First Published: 2001-08-15
Date Last Updated: 2001-08-17 21:25 UTC
Document Revision: 7

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