CXO

Yahoo fixes two flaws in mail system

Online portal says bugs could have let attackers alter appearance of pages and access a victim's data.

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By Robert Lemos
Staff Writer, CNET News.com

Yahoo fixed two flaws in its free mail system that could have allowed a malicious user to read a victim's browser cookies and change the appearance of some pages, Yahoo said Thursday.

A representative of the company said the flaws were fixed last month by making changes on the company's Yahoo Mail servers.

"We were alerted of it at the end of May, early June," spokeswoman Mary Osako said. "There ended up being two variations of the issue: One which we could reproduce in a few days and the other which took a lot of effort to reproduce."

The vulnerabilities are of a type known as cross-site scripting flaws, which typically take advantage scripting languages and misconfigured Web servers to launch attacks against a user's computer. The attacks typically redirect the user to another Web site, allow access to the user's cookies or, sometimes, allow the attacker to run code on the victim's computer.

Yahoo fixed the flaws in its server code. No patch is required by the Yahoo Mail users.

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