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dotCMS template permissions allow arbitrary code execution

Vulnerability Note VU#898083

Original Release Date: 2012-05-25 | Last Revised: 2012-05-25


The dotCMS content management system version 1.9 and possibly earlier versions, contains a vulnerability that allows users with the appropriate permissions to create a malicious template with arbitrary code.


An authenticated dotCMS user with the permissions required to author and upload templates may create a malicious XSLT or Velocity template that can execute arbitrary java code. The arbitrary java code will run with the permissions of the web service account.


An authenticated attacker with the permissions to create a template may upload a malicious XSLT or Velocity template that can run arbitrary java code. In some cases, the attacker may be able to exploit this vulnerability to obtain a shell on the web server.


Apply an Update

dotCMS version or 2.0.1 and later address these vulnerabilities. If you are unable to upgrade please consider the following workarounds.


Unmap the XSLT Tool in the toolbox.xml file or apply this XSLT Tool which is backported from 2.0 to 1.9

Add to the property: runtime.introspector.uberspect = org.apache.velocity.util.introspection.SecureUberspector

Vendor Information


dotCMS Affected

Notified:  April 13, 2012 Updated: May 01, 2012



Vendor Statement

We have not received a statement from the vendor.

Vendor Information

We are not aware of further vendor information regarding this vulnerability.

CVSS Metrics

Group Score Vector
Base 8.5 AV:N/AC:M/Au:S/C:C/I:C/A:C
Temporal 6.9 E:POC/RL:U/RC:UC
Environmental 6.9 CDP:ND/TD:ND/CR:ND/IR:ND/AR:ND



Thanks to Ben Murphy for reporting this vulnerability.

This document was written by Jared Allar.

Other Information

CVE IDs: CVE-2012-1826
Date Public: 2012-05-25
Date First Published: 2012-05-25
Date Last Updated: 2012-05-25 12:26 UTC
Document Revision: 26

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