Microsoft Vulnerability Research Advisory MSVR12-005

Vulnerabilities in RealNetworks Helix Server Could Allow Arbitrary Script Execution

Published: April 17, 2012

Version: 1.0


Executive Summary

Microsoft is providing notification of the discovery and remediation of multiple vulnerabilities affecting RealNetworks Helix Server software version and earlier. Microsoft discovered and disclosed these vulnerabilities under coordinated vulnerability disclosure to the affected vendor, RealNetworks. RealNetworks has remediated these vulnerabilities in their software.

These vulnerabilities exist in the way that the RealNetworks Helix Server parses page requests. An attacker could exploit these vulnerabilities by injecting malicious script into a page link, and then convincing a user to click the page link. When the page link is clicked, the malicious script could run in the context of the current user.

Microsoft Vulnerability Research reported these issues to and coordinated with RealNetworks to ensure remediation of this issue. These vulnerabilities have been assigned the entry, CVE-2012-1984, in the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures list. For more information, including information about updates from the RealNetworks, see the April 2, 2012 Security Update for Helix Server and Helix Mobile Server.

Mitigating Factors

  • An attacker must convince a victim to click a malicious link that has a specially crafted URL.
  • An attacker who successfully exploited these vulnerabilities could gain the same user rights as the current user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.

Advisory Details

Purpose and Recommendation

Purpose of Advisory: To notify users of vulnerabilities and their remediation.

Advisory Status: Advisory published.

Recommendation: Review the Suggested Actions section and configure as appropriate.

Issue References

For more information about this issue, see the following references:

Reference Identification
Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2012-1984

Affected and Non-Affected Software

This advisory discusses the following software:

Affected Software
Helix Server version and earlier
Non-Affected Software
Helix Server version 14.3.x

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the scope of this advisory?
This advisory is part of a coordinated release with affected vendors to inform customers of a security issue that may affect their systems.

Is this a security vulnerability that requires Microsoft to issue a security update?
No. These vulnerabilities have been fixed via an update from the affected third-party vendors. The update remediates the software listed in the table, Affected Software.

What is the scope of the vulnerabilities?
These are arbitrary script execution vulnerabilities.

What causes the vulnerabilities?
These issues are caused when Helix Server does not properly validate script information included within a specially crafted URL.

What might an attacker use thesevulnerabilitiesto do?
An attacker who successfully exploited any of these vulnerabilities could gain the same user rights as the current user. If the user is logged on with administrative user rights, an attacker who successfully exploited any of these vulnerabilities could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

How could an attacker exploit the vulnerabilities?
An attacker could exploit these issues by convincing a victim to click on a link that has a specially crafted URL.

Suggested Actions

Update to the latest version of RealNetworks Helix Server.

Other Information


Microsoft thanks the following:

  • Tom Gallagher of Microsoft and RealNetworks for working toward a resolution


The information provided in this advisory is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Microsoft disclaims all warranties, either express or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. In no event shall Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers be liable for any damages whatsoever including direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, loss of business profits or special damages, even if Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers have been advised of the possibility of such damages. Some states do not allow the exclusion or limitation of liability for consequential or incidental damages so the foregoing limitation may not apply.


  • V1.0 (April 17, 2012): Advisory published.

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