Pwn2Own competitors crack all major web browsers

Hackers browse for vulnerabilities at Pwn2Own

All of the major web browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari, were cracked during this year's two-day Pwn2Own contest run by HP's Zero Day Initiative (ZDI).

Two vulnerabilities were found in Google Chrome, including a sandbox bypass and an arbitrary read/write bug, both of which resulted in code execution. The latter was deemed a partial win, since part of it was discovered earlier at Pwnium.

Three use-after-free free bugs and a kernel bug that allowed the system calculator to be opened were discovered in Microsoft Internet Explorer.

Two out-of-bound read/write bugs resulting in code execution were found in Mozilla Firefox, as well as a use-after-free bug allowing a sandbox bypass. Two more issues were found that allow privilege escalation within the browser and a security measure bypass.

A heap overflow and a sandbox bypass resulting in code execution were spotted in Apple Safari.

It wasn't all web browsers either. Another heap overflow and sandbox bypass was discovered in Adobe Flash and Adobe Reader, as well as a use-after-free Internet Explorer sandbox bypass in Flash.


The competition's sponsors, Google and ZDI, also showcased some bugs they found as part of the Pwn4Fun part of the event, which probably wasn't much fun for the targeted browser makers.

Google showed how it could exploit Safari to open Calculator as root on Mac OS X, while ZDI launched Scientific Calculator using a sandbox bypass exploit in Internet Explorer.

A total of $850,000 was paid out to winners over the two days, in addition to laptops, ZDI points, and other prizes. $82,500 was also given to the Canadian Red Cross by Google and ZDI.

All of the discovered vulnerabilities were reported to the respective companies so that they can be addressed in future patches.

Via ZDNet