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CERT Coordination Center

Microsoft Internet Explorer does not adequately evaluate malformed URLs

Vulnerability Note VU#585123

Original Release Date: 2002-03-29 | Last Revised: 2002-03-29


Microsoft Internet Explorer contains a serious vulnerability in its handling of zone determination.


Microsoft Internet Explorer contains a vulnerability in the way in which it handles zone determination. Specifically, HTML scripts stored in cookies should be executed in the same zone (typically the "Internet Zone") as the site hosting the cookie. As a result of this vulnerability, a script embedded in a cookie can be executed in the Local Computer zone of the victim's machine. This places systems at risk because the security policies of the "Local Computer Zone" are typically more permissive than those of the "Internet Zone." Viewing a malicious HTML document such as a web page or HTML formatted email message can allow arbitrary commands to be executed on the victim's machine.


An attacker can execute arbitrary commands on the target system with the privileges of the victim.


Apply vendor patches available from

Vendor Information


Microsoft Corporation Affected

Updated:  March 29, 2002



Vendor Statement

Please see

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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The CERT/CC thanks Microsoft for the information contained in MS02-015.

This document was written by Ian A. Finlay.

Other Information

CVE IDs: CVE-2002-0078
Severity Metric: 35.64
Date Public: 2002-03-29
Date First Published: 2002-03-29
Date Last Updated: 2002-03-29 20:55 UTC
Document Revision: 62

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