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Apple Mac OS X Bom vulnerable to memory corruption via specially crafted ZIP file

Vulnerability Note VU#514740

Original Release Date: 2006-08-02 | Last Revised: 2006-08-02


A memory corruption vulnerability in the Mac OS X Bom could allow a remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on an affected system.


Apple's Bom is the archive file handler in the Mac OS X operating system. It features the ability to handle file archives in a number of different formats, including ZIP (.zip) files.

An unspecified heap memory corruption vulnerability exists in Bom's compression state handling that can be triggered by a specially crafted ZIP file.

Per Apple, Safari and Mail will automatically open "safe" file types, such as pictures, movies, and archive files, including ZIP files. If the contents of an archive file are also considered safe, then Safari will automatically open the contents after the archive is extracted. As a result, this vulnerability may be exploited by a user simply clicking on a link to a malicious ZIP file.


A remote, unauthenticated attacker may be able to execute code, or cause the affected application to crash.

By convincing a user to open or follow a link to a specially crafted ZIP file, an attacker could execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the user or cause the affected application to crash.



Apple has addressed this issue in Security Update 2006-004. Refer to Apple's Security Update site for more information.

Disable "Open 'safe' files after downloading"

Disable the option "Open 'safe' files after downloading in Safari," as specified in the Securing Your Web Browser document. This will help prevent automatic exploitation of this and other vulnerabilities. Refer to Apple technical support for disabling the automatic opening of downloaded files by other programs.

Vendor Information


Apple Computer, Inc. Affected

Notified:  August 02, 2006 Updated: August 02, 2006



Vendor Statement

We have not received a statement from the vendor.

Vendor Information

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


Refer to Apple Security Update 2006-004 for more details on this vulnerability.

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

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Thanks to Apple for reporting this issue. Apple in turn credits Tom Ferris of

This document was written by Ryan Giobbi.

Other Information

CVE IDs: CVE-2006-3497
Severity Metric: 0.48
Date Public: 2006-08-01
Date First Published: 2006-08-02
Date Last Updated: 2006-08-02 18:10 UTC
Document Revision: 23

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