Vulnerability Note VU#772447

ffmpeg and Libav cross-domain information disclosure vulnerability

Original Release date: 20 Jan 2016 | Last revised: 10 Mar 2016


ffmpeg is a "cross-platform solution to record, convert and stream audio and video". ffmpeg is vulnerable to local file disclosure due to improper enforcement of domain restrictions when processing playlist files.


CWE-201: Information Exposure Through Sent Data - CVE-2016-1897, CVE-2016-1898

When a user opens a maliciously crafted playlist file in ffmpeg, ffmpeg will query a server for remote data. By carefully crafting the playlist, an attacker can cause ffmpeg to request internet URIs that expose file:// content from the victim's machine. CVE-2016-1897 refers to an issue with processing playlists that use concatenations, while CVE-2016-1898 refers to a related issue with subfiles.

According to a mailing list post from MITRE's CVE team:

    The essential problem is that a crafted file forces the victim to visit an arbitrary external URL, but this URL is constructed using data from the victim's local filesystem.

More details are provided by the researcher in a blog post (in Russian).

Libav is a fork of ffmpeg and is also vulnerable.


By causing a specially-crafted playlist file to be processed with ffmpeg or Libav, a remote attacker may acquire file contents from a vulnerable system. In some circumstances, this may occur without explicit user interaction (such as the creation of a thumbnail preview by a file manager).


Apply an update

ffmpeg version 2.8.5 has been released to address this issue. Affected users are encouraged to update as soon as possible.

Vendor Information (Learn More)

VendorStatusDate NotifiedDate Updated
Alpine LinuxAffected-20 Jan 2016
Arch LinuxAffected20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
Debian GNU/LinuxAffected20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
ffmpegAffected-20 Jan 2016
Gentoo LinuxAffected20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
LibavAffected-20 Jan 2016
SUSE LinuxAffected20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
UbuntuAffected20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
VideoLANAffected-21 Jan 2016
CentOSNot Affected20 Jan 201621 Jan 2016
Microsoft CorporationNot Affected20 Jan 201610 Mar 2016
OmniTINot Affected20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
Red Hat, Inc.Not Affected20 Jan 201621 Jan 2016
AppleUnknown20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
CoreOSUnknown20 Jan 201620 Jan 2016
If you are a vendor and your product is affected, let us know.View More »

CVSS Metrics (Learn More)

Group Score Vector
Base 5.0 AV:N/AC:L/Au:N/C:P/I:N/A:N
Temporal 3.9 E:POC/RL:OF/RC:C
Environmental 2.9 CDP:ND/TD:M/CR:ND/IR:ND/AR:ND



This vulnerability was publicly disclosed by Maxim Andreev.

This document was written by Garret Wassermann and Will Dormann.

Other Information

  • CVE IDs: CVE-2016-1897 CVE-2016-1898
  • Date Public: 12 Jan 2016
  • Date First Published: 20 Jan 2016
  • Date Last Updated: 10 Mar 2016
  • Document Revision: 47


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