Common Weakness Enumeration

A Community-Developed List of Software Weakness Types

CWE/SANS Top 25 Most Dangerous Software Errors
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CWE CATEGORY: Error Conditions, Return Values, Status Codes

Category ID: 389
Status: Incomplete
+ Description

Description Summary

If a function in a product does not generate the correct return/status codes, or if the product does not handle all possible return/status codes that could be generated by a function, then security issues may result.

Extended Description

This type of problem is most often found in conditions that are rarely encountered during the normal operation of the product. Presumably, most bugs related to common conditions are found and eliminated during development and testing. In some cases, the attacker can directly control or influence the environment to trigger the rare conditions.

+ Applicable Platforms



+ Weakness Ordinalities
(where the weakness exists independent of other weaknesses)
+ Relationships
NatureTypeIDNameView(s) this relationship pertains toView(s)
ChildOfCategoryCategory388Error Handling
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base248Uncaught Exception
Development Concepts699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base252Unchecked Return Value
Development Concepts699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base253Incorrect Check of Function Return Value
Development Concepts699
ParentOfWeakness ClassWeakness Class390Detection of Error Condition Without Action
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base391Unchecked Error Condition
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base392Missing Report of Error Condition
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base393Return of Wrong Status Code
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base394Unexpected Status Code or Return Value
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base395Use of NullPointerException Catch to Detect NULL Pointer Dereference
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base396Declaration of Catch for Generic Exception
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base397Declaration of Throws for Generic Exception
Development Concepts (primary)699
ParentOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base584Return Inside Finally Block
Development Concepts (primary)699
+ Research Gaps

Many researchers focus on the resultant weaknesses and do not necessarily diagnose whether a rare condition is the primary factor. However, since 2005 it seems to be reported more frequently than in the past. This subject needs more study.

+ Taxonomy Mappings
Mapped Taxonomy NameNode IDFitMapped Node Name
PLOVERError Conditions, Return Values, Status Codes
+ Content History
Submission DateSubmitterOrganizationSource
PLOVERExternally Mined
Modification DateModifierOrganizationSource
2008-09-08CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Relationships, Other_Notes, Taxonomy_Mappings
2008-10-14CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Description
2009-12-28CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Other_Notes, Weakness_Ordinalities

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Page Last Updated: January 11, 2017