Skip to content
Switch branches/tags
Go to file
Latest commit 2db3ebc Jul 16, 2021 History
0 contributors

Users who have contributed to this file

Multiple vulnerabilities in TIBCO Data Virtualization (versions 8.3 and below)

By Pedro Ribeiro ( | @pedrib1337) from Agile Information Security

Disclosure: 2021-07-16 / Last updated: 2021-07-16

Product information

From the vendor's website:

TIBCO® Data Virtualization integrates disparate data sources in real-time instead of copying their data into a data warehouse. TIBCO® Data Virtualization (TDV) allows you to easily create logical views to integrate and secure data across disparate data sources and tailor it to your analytical needs. TDV connects to virtually any data source and provides business users access to data through JDBC, ODBC, ADO.NET, REST and SOAP.


TIBCO Data Virtualization (TDV) is a product for data processing and analytics which can be installed onto Linux and Windows hosts. Interaction with the software is done over a Web interface on port 9400.

TDV exposes an unauthenticated Action Message Format (AMF) API endpoint that is vulnerable to insecure Java deserialization. By abusing this deserialization and combining it with an outdated Java library that contains a gadget chain, it is possible to achieve remote code execution as root on Linux or SYSTEM on Windows.

This vulnerability chain affects all versions of TDV up to 8.3 and below, and it is exploitable on Linux and Windows hosts. A Ruby exploit which abuses this vulnerability chain was released with this advisory.

I attempted to disclose these vulnerabilities responsibly to TIBCO, but they refused to acknowledge my vulnerability report. More details are in the Disclosure Process section.

A video of the exploit in action can be seen here.

Vulnerability Details

#1: Unsafe Flex AMF Java Object Deserialization

By sending an HTTP POST request with random data to /monitor/messagebroker/amf, the server will respond with a 200 OK and binary data that includes:

 ...Unsupported AMF version XXXXX...

Which indicates that the server has a Apache / Adobe Flex AMF (BlazeDS) endpoint at that location. The BlazeDS library version running on the server is, which means it is vulnerable to CVE-2017-5641, the description of which is copied below:

"Previous versions of Apache Flex BlazeDS (4.7.2 and earlier) did not restrict which types were allowed for AMF(X) object deserialization by default. During the deserialization process code is executed that for several known types has undesired side-effects. Other, unknown types may also exhibit such behaviors. One vector in the Java standard library exists that allows an attacker to trigger possibly further exploitable Java deserialization of untrusted data. Other known vectors in third party libraries can be used to trigger remote code execution."

I previously exploited this vulnerability in DrayTek VigorACS and Cisco ISE.

Given the complexity of AMF and the Java deserialization chain involved, it is out of scope of this advisory to go into details. The only takeaway necessary is that under the right conditions, as it will be explained in Exploit Chain, it is possible to achieve remote code execution.

Readers interested in digging deeper should check out the write-up AMF - Another Malicious Format by Markus Wulftange as well as Java Unmarshaller Security - Turning your data into code execution by Moritz Bechler for further details on this vulnerability.

#2: Use of Insecure Java Library

TDV ships with a very old version of the Java BeanShell library, version 2.0b4, which is at least 7 years old at the time of writing. This version contains a Java deserialization gadget chain that can be abused to execute code under the right conditions. There is a payload for this library in the famous ysoserial Java deserialization exploitation tool, which is named BeanShell1.

Exploit Chain

The exploit chain seems simple at first glance. As I have previously shown in my DrayTek VigorACS and Cisco ISE exploits, the "normal" exploitation process abuses the ysoserial JRMP payload to return a malicious object to the caller. This technique works on TDV versions 8.2 and below, but not on 8.3. This is due to 8.3 using a newer Java version that has JEP-290 to filter certain known bad classes and protect against malicious remote method invocations (RMI).

While there are multiple write-ups on bypasses, none of them worked, so it was impossible to use the JRMP technique for version 8.3.

However, Matthias Kaiser was able to find two other ways to achieve remote code execution with AMF endpoints that work without RMI, therefore bypassing JEP-290 entirely. They are detailed in an excellent blog post Exploiting Adobe ColdFusion before CVE-2017-3066.

Thankfully, his Externalizable based org.apache.axis2.util.MetaDataEntry technique works just fine in TDV 8.3 and below, creating a universal exploit for all affected versions!

The exploit released with this advisory performs the following actions:

  1. Uses ysoserial to generate a BeanShell1 payload with the command to be executed.
  2. Replaces the serialVersionUID of the BeanShell classes used by ysoserial (2.0b5) with the ones used by TDV (2.0b4)
  3. Wraps everything in a org.apache.axis2.util.MetaDataEntry
  4. Then wraps everything again in an AMF Message object and sends it off to the remote server

... which results in remote code execution as root on Linux and SYSTEM on Windows! Please refer to the video released with this advisory to see it in action.

Disclosure Process:

The disclosure process was a complete disaster. I first contacted TIBCO on 2021-07-05, informing them of the vulnerability chain and asking them to confirm my suspicion that 8.4 was not vulnerable, and whether they were going to release an advisory telling their customers to upgrade to 8.4 (since 8.3 was still being offered for download).

The reply came one day later and it read:

Thank you for your report. We are actively investigating the details you have provided and we will be back with you shortly. TIBCO has a “Fair Disclosure” policy which does not allow us to confirm issues before they are fixed, which may contribute to response time. For complete details on our disclosure policies, please refer to

Mind boggling. They refuse to acknowledge vulnerabilities to the researcher who reported them? Does this make any sense? And they have the gall of calling it "Fair Disclosure"!

A look at their vulnerability disclosure policy shows:

TIBCO takes security very seriously. TIBCO’s policies are designed to treat the users of our software equally with respect to vulnerability disclosure and remediation.

If their policy starts with "we take security very seriously", then it's going to be downhill from here and it is clear what they really mean (hint: they DON'T take security seriously).

Still, it doesn't say anywhere that they don't confirm security issues to whoever reported them? I responded with a polite email saying that I can wait for confirmation, but please come back to me on whether you will issue an advisory, inform your customers and if they can mention my name as the vulnerability discoverer. Their response was:

Unfortunately, I am unable to answer any of your questions due to TIBCO’s security policy I will update you as soon as I can.

Unbelievable. Another look at their vulnerability disclosure policy shows:

Coordinated Disclosure - TIBCO encourages security researchers to report to us any vulnerabilities that they find in our offerings. Our principle of coordinated disclosure requires that we work together in a constructive manner with security researchers who report vulnerabilities to ensure that the vulnerability is fully remediated and subsequent disclosure is coordinated.

Does this sound like "fair" or coordinated disclosure? In what planet? I then sent a much more angry email, asking again for confirmation whether they will credit me, issue an advisory for their customers, etc. Their answer was again a non answer:

Pedro, to answer your question, If a security vulnerability were determined to exist in TIBCO code, then as a CNA we would assign a CVE and announce the vulnerability along with a remediation. If an undisclosed security vulnerability was determined to exist in third party code, we would work with that third party to achieve a resolution. TIBCO does not assign CVEs nor issue security advisories for third party code.

So they don't acknowledge my report, they don't confirm if their product is vulnerable (obviously it is, I had a fully working remote exploit at this point), and refuse to say whether they will credit me or even issue an advisory.

My final email was a very angry rant telling them what I think of their disclosure policy and that I am going to release this advisory and exploit without their consent.

I will refrain from commenting further, as it is clear to anyone who reads this that their vulnerability disclosure process is not fit for purpose. I hope they change it after this debacle, although I am not holding my breath.

Fixes / Solutions:

Upgrade TIBCO Data Virtualization to the latest 8.4 version, released on 2021-05-04, which removes the AMF endpoint, rendering this vulnerability chain unexploitable.


Please note that Agile Information Security (Agile InfoSec) relies on information provided by the vendor when listing fixed versions or products. Agile InfoSec does not verify this information, except when specifically mentioned in this advisory or when requested or contracted by the vendor to do so.
Unconfirmed vendor fixes might be ineffective or incomplete, and it is the vendor's responsibility to ensure the vulnerabilities found by Agile Information Security are resolved properly.
Agile Information Security Limited does not accept any responsibility, financial or otherwise, from any material losses, loss of life or reputational loss as a result of misuse of the information or code contained or mentioned in this advisory. It is the vendor's responsibility to ensure their products' security before, during and after release to market.


All information, code and binary data in this advisory is released to the public under the GNU General Public License, version 3 (GPLv3).
For information, code or binary data obtained from other sources that has a license which is incompatible with GPLv3, the original license prevails.