Microsoft Office Exploits: CVE-2015-2520 and CVE-2015-2523

Microsoft Office Exploits: CVE-2015-2520 and CVE-2015-2523

So I had Word opened and Microsoft AutoUpdate ran and I saw that there were updates to install. Being curious as I was, I went to the link listed about the "security update" and saw that there were exploits that allowed for the possibility of remote code execution in various versions of Excel. To see the table showing which are exploitable, check this link out. That is where I also found the two CVE numbers that were associated with the version of Excel that I'm running: Excel 2016 for Mac. I went to exploit-db.com to check out the CVE's listed: CVE-2015-2520 and CVE-2015-2523. Being the curious type I am, I downloaded the linked files and saw that they were excel files. Tried opening them, but Excel just warned me saying that they were corrupt or that there may be some missing data; no crashes. I'm still pretty new to this world but I'm wondering, does that just mean that my Excel is vulnerable but requires a different approach than what was done with the sample on db-exploit? Or does it just mean that it could be OS specific (I'm running OS X 10.11 which has added a lot of extra security features)? I'm also wondering how an exploit like this is made, is this something you can do with a hex editor? And how might you take something like this and insert a payload?

3 Responses

Yes these look like Windows only exploits because of the .dll and .exe file versions in the code. I can try these at some point if I have time

Right, but at the same time, Microsoft has issued a patch for Microsoft Office 2011 and 2016 for Mac, citing these two exploits as the reason for the patch, so there must be a way to use the exploits on the OS X versions as well, but I supposed it would be somewhat different if it was based off of a dll injection.

Maybe Microsoft still used DLLs for office for mac?

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