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Sun Solaris patches may cause passwords to be logged in clear text

Vulnerability Note VU#523710

Original Release Date: 2004-06-24 | Last Revised: 2004-06-30


Sun Solaris contains a vulnerability in which systems configured as kerberos clients that have specific patches installed may log passwords in clear text.


Sun Microsystems released patches 112908-12 and 115168-03 to address issues in kerberos. There is a vulnerability in these patches that may result in user passwords being logged in clear text.

According to the Sun Security Alert:

    This issue can occur on a Solaris system configured as a kerberos client with patch 112908-12 or 115168-03 installed and any service using pam_krb5 as an "auth" module. With the debug feature of pam_krb5 enabled, password authentication for the user will be logged in clear text at LOG_DEBUG level.


A local user with access to the log files could obtain another user's password.


Apply a patch
Sun has issued an advisory which addresses this issue. For more information on patches available for your system, please refer to Sun Security Alert: 57587.

Remove previous patch

Back out patch 112908-12 (SPARC platform) or 115168-03 (x86 platform).

Disable debug feature of pam_krb5

Search for any matching lines using the following command, and remove the "debug" entry from that line in the "/etc/pam.conf" (see pam.conf(4)) file:

    $ egrep -e '[\\t ]*[^#].*pam_krb5.*debug' /etc/pam.conf

Disable logging of LOG_DEBUG level messages

This can be accomplished by the following steps:
    1. Remove or comment out entries in the "etc/syslog.conf" (see syslog.conf(4)) file that match output from the following command:

      $ egrep -e '\*.debug|daemon.debug' /etc/syslog.conf

    2. Send a SIGHUP to syslogd:

      $ pkill -HUP syslog

Vendor Information


Sun Microsystems Inc. Affected

Updated:  June 24, 2004



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.


Please refer to Sun Security Alert: 57587.

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

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This vulnerability was reported by Sun Microsystems Inc.

This document was written by Damon Morda.

Other Information

CVE IDs: None
Severity Metric: 3.00
Date Public: 2004-06-17
Date First Published: 2004-06-24
Date Last Updated: 2004-06-30 13:21 UTC
Document Revision: 14

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