MySQL UDF Exploitation


In the real world, while I was pentesting a financial institute I came across a scenario where they had an internal intranet and it was using MySQL 5.7 64-bit as the backend database technology. Most of the time the I encounter MSSQL in most cooperate environments, but this was a rare case. I found SQL injection in the web application and I was able to dump the username and password from the mysql.user and I realized it had privileges to write files to disk. This lead me into writing a post and sharing techniques in injecting a UDF library to MySQL and gaining code execution and popping a shell in Windows. When I Googled most techniques are a bit vague when it comes to Windows. So, I thought of writing this post with my own research to clear things and make you understand few tricks you can use to do this manually.

I will be hosting the latest MySQL 5.7.21 latest community server by the time I am blogging this, in one machine. To reproduce the scenario, I am running the mysqld server with ‘–secure-file-priv=’ parameter set to blank. In this scenario I was able to retrieve the username and password from the mysql.user table using a union based injection in the intranet. Note that in MySQL 5.7 and above the column ‘password’ doesn’t exists. They have changed it to ‘authentication_string’.

# MySQL 5.6 and below
select host, user, password from mysql.user;
# MySQL 5.7 and above
select host, user, authentication_string from mysql.user;

Note that you can use the metasploit’s mysql_hashdump.rb auxiliary module to dump the MySQL hashes if you already have the credentials. By the time I am writing this blog post the script needed to be updated to extract in MySQL 5.7 you can check my pull request here

The host column for the user ‘osanda’ allows connections from 192.168.0.*, which means we can use this user for remote connections from that IP range. I cracked password hash and got the plain text password.


Exploiting Format Strings in Windows

I thought of making a small challenge in exploiting format strings in Windows. This is how it looks, it asks for a filename to open. At first this might be a bit confusing. There’s no vulnerable functions in reading a file. You can see that our first argument to the program is echoed back in the program.

Let’s investigate this inside a debugger. As you can see if argc == 2 the application continues the flow and argv[1] is passed into that function highlighted.