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Apple AirPort wireless drivers vulnerable to integer overflow

Vulnerability Note VU#563492

Original Release Date: 2006-09-22 | Last Revised: 2006-11-01


An integer overflow exists in the Apple AirPort wireless drivers. Successful exploitation of this vulnerability may allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code, or create a denial-of-service condition.


According to Apple,

An integer overflow exists in the AirPort wireless driver's API for third-party wireless software. This could lead to a buffer overflow in such applications dependent upon API usage.
Note that the attacker needs to have 802.11 wireless connectivity to the vulnerable system to exploit this vulnerability. If successfully exploited, an attacker may be able to execute arbitrary code with user-level privileges.

It is important to note that because the vulnerability exists at a lower network layer than TCP/IP, software firewalls, anti-virus software, and host-based IDS or IPS systems may not protect against this vulnerability.

For information on affected versions of OS X refer to Apple Security Update 2006-005.


An unauthenticated remote attacker may be able to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the user running an application using the affected API or cause that application to crash.


Apply updates from Apple
Apple has released updates to address this issue. See Apple Security Update 2006-005 for more details.

Disable the Affected Wireless Adapter

Turning off the wireless adapter can mitigate this vulnerability. To turn off the wireless card, follow the instructions found in Apple's Knowledgebase:

Turning AirPort off

Turn your AirPort Card off when you're in situations where radio communication may be prohibited, such as in an airplane or at a hospital.
1.\tOpen the Internet Connect application and click AirPort in the toolbar.
2.\tClick Turn AirPort Off.

If you have disabled the AirPort port in Network preferences, then your AirPort Card is already turned off. To disable the AirPort port, choose Network Port Configurations from the Show pop-up menu and deselect the AirPort checkbox.

Vendor Information


Apple Computer, Inc. Affected

Updated:  September 22, 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.


See and for more details.

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This vulnerability was reported in Apple Security Update 2006-005.

This document was written by Ryan Giobbi.

Other Information

CVE IDs: CVE-2006-3509
Severity Metric: 21.94
Date Public: 2006-09-21
Date First Published: 2006-09-22
Date Last Updated: 2006-11-01 17:14 UTC
Document Revision: 44

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