Researchers at dxw Security have discovered a flaw in the WordPress Mobile Pack plugin that can be exploited to access password-protected posts.
dxw creates and hosts WordPress websites for the public sector. The company’s Security department reviews WordPress and WordPress plugins to ensure that the website developed by dxw and the plugins they use are secure.
WordPress Mobile Pack allows users to package their existing content into a cross-platform mobile Web application. Version 2.0 is supported on iPhones, Android smartphones, Windows Phone 8 and Firefox OS, and is compatible with Web browsers such as Safari, Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer 10 and the native browser in Android.
According to an advisory published on the Full Disclosure mailing list and on dxw Security’s website, the WordPress Mobile Pack plugin, which has been downloaded more than 610,000 times from the official WordPress site, is plagued by an information disclosure vulnerability which has been assigned the CVE identifier CVE-2014-5337.
The problem lies in a PHP file that can be used to read public and password-protected posts. The attacker doesn’t need to be authenticated for the exploit to work. However, draft and private posts are not exposed by the vulnerability, dxw Security said.
On websites with WordPress Mobile Pack enabled, the attack can be reproduced by visiting a URL in this form:
The password-protected post becomes visible in the form of JSON wrapped in “x()”.
The vulnerability was reported to the developers of WordPress Mobile Pack on July 24 and it was fixed on Tuesday with the release of version 2.0.2, which also addresses several non-security related bugs. Users are advised to update their installations to this or newer versions.
Serious vulnerabilities have been found in several popular WordPress plugins over the past period. Earlier this month, researchers from Sucuri reported finding a critical security hole in the Custom Contact Forms plugin that could have been exploited to gain control of affected websites.
Another serious vulnerability was identified in July in the WPtouch plugin. The flaw could have been leveraged to upload arbitrary PHP files to affected servers. The MailPoet plugin, which has been downloaded more than 2.2 million times from WordPress.org, contained a remote file upload vulnerability.