A number or object is predictable based on observations that the attacker can make about the state of the system or network, such as time, process ID, etc.
The table(s) below shows the weaknesses and high level categories that are related to this weakness. These relationships are defined as ChildOf, ParentOf, MemberOf and give insight to similar items that may exist at higher and lower levels of abstraction. In addition, relationships such as PeerOf and CanAlsoBe are defined to show similar weaknesses that the user may want to explore.
Relevant to the view "Research Concepts" (CWE-1000)
The different Modes of Introduction provide information about how and when this weakness may be introduced. The Phase identifies a point in the software life cycle at which introduction may occur, while the Note provides a typical scenario related to introduction during the given phase.
Architecture and Design
REALIZATION: This weakness is caused during implementation of an architectural security tactic.
The listings below show possible areas for which the given weakness could appear. These may be for specific named Languages, Operating Systems, Architectures, Paradigms, Technologies, or a class of such platforms. The platform is listed along with how frequently the given weakness appears for that instance.
The table below specifies different individual consequences associated with the weakness. The Scope identifies the application security area that is violated, while the Impact describes the negative technical impact that arises if an adversary succeeds in exploiting this weakness. The Likelihood provides information about how likely the specific consequence is expected to be seen relative to the other consequences in the list. For example, there may be high likelihood that a weakness will be exploited to achieve a certain impact, but a low likelihood that it will be exploited to achieve a different impact.
Technical Impact: Varies by Context
This weakness could be exploited by an attacker in a number ways depending on the context. If a predictable number is used to generate IDs or keys that are used within protection mechanisms, then an attacker could gain unauthorized access to the system. If predictable filenames are used for storing sensitive information, then an attacker might gain access to the system and may be able to gain access to the information in the file.
This code generates a unique random identifier for a user's session.
Example Language: PHP
srand($userID); return rand();
Because the seed for the PRNG is always the user's ID, the session ID will always be the same. An attacker could thus predict any user's session ID and potentially hijack the session.
This example also exhibits a Small Seed Space (CWE-339).
MFV. predictable filename and insecure permissions allows file modification to execute SQL queries.
Increase the entropy used to seed a PRNG.
Phases: Architecture and Design; Requirements
Strategy: Libraries or Frameworks
Use products or modules that conform to FIPS 140-2 [REF-267] to avoid obvious entropy problems. Consult FIPS 140-2 Annex C ("Approved Random Number Generators").
Use a PRNG that periodically re-seeds itself using input from high-quality sources, such as hardware devices with high entropy. However, do not re-seed too frequently, or else the entropy source might block.
This MemberOf Relationships table shows additional CWE Categories and Views that reference this weakness as a member. This information is often useful in understanding where a weakness fits within the context of external information sources.