CWE

Common Weakness Enumeration

A Community-Developed List of Software Weakness Types

CWE/SANS Top 25 Most Dangerous Software Errors
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ID

CWE-460: Improper Cleanup on Thrown Exception

Weakness ID: 460
Abstraction: Variant
Structure: Simple
Status: Draft
Presentation Filter:
+ Description
The product does not clean up its state or incorrectly cleans up its state when an exception is thrown, leading to unexpected state or control flow.
+ Extended Description
Often, when functions or loops become complicated, some level of resource cleanup is needed throughout execution. Exceptions can disturb the flow of the code and prevent the necessary cleanup from happening.
+ Relationships

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)
NatureTypeIDName
ChildOfClassClass755Improper Handling of Exceptional Conditions
ChildOfBaseBase459Incomplete Cleanup
+ Relevant to the view "Architectural Concepts" (CWE-1008)
NatureTypeIDName
MemberOfCategoryCategory1012Cross Cutting
+ Relevant to the view "Development Concepts" (CWE-699)
NatureTypeIDName
MemberOfCategoryCategory452Initialization and Cleanup Errors
+ Modes Of Introduction

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.

PhaseNote
ImplementationREALIZATION: This weakness is caused during implementation of an architectural security tactic.
+ Applicable Platforms
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.

Languages

C (Undetermined Prevalence)

C++ (Undetermined Prevalence)

Java (Undetermined Prevalence)

C# (Undetermined Prevalence)

+ Common Consequences

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.

ScopeImpactLikelihood
Other

Technical Impact: Varies by Context

The code could be left in a bad state.
+ Likelihood Of Exploit
Medium
+ Demonstrative Examples

Example 1

The following example demonstrates the weakness.

(bad code)
Example Language: Java 
public class foo {
public static final void main( String args[] ) {

boolean returnValue;
returnValue=doStuff();

}
public static final boolean doStuff( ) {

boolean threadLock;
boolean truthvalue=true;
try {

while(
//check some condition

) {

threadLock=true; //do some stuff to truthvalue
threadLock=false;

}

}
catch (Exception e){

System.err.println("You did something bad");
if (something) return truthvalue;

}
return truthvalue;

}

}

In this case, you may leave a thread locked accidentally.

+ Potential Mitigations

Phase: Implementation

If one breaks from a loop or function by throwing an exception, make sure that cleanup happens or that you should exit the program. Use throwing exceptions sparsely.
+ Memberships
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.
+ Taxonomy Mappings
Mapped Taxonomy NameNode IDFitMapped Node Name
CLASPImproper cleanup on thrown exception
CERT Java Secure CodingERR03-JRestore prior object state on method failure
CERT Java Secure CodingERR05-JDo not let checked exceptions escape from a finally block
CERT Perl Secure CodingEXP31-PLImpreciseDo not suppress or ignore exceptions
+ Content History
Submissions
Submission DateSubmitterOrganization
CLASP
Modifications
Modification DateModifierOrganization
2008-07-01Eric DalciCigital
updated Time_of_Introduction
2008-09-08CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Applicable_Platforms, Common_Consequences, Relationships, Other_Notes, Taxonomy_Mappings
2009-03-10CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2009-05-27CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Description
2011-06-01CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Common_Consequences, Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings
2011-06-27CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Common_Consequences
2011-09-13CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings
2012-05-11CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2014-06-23CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Description, Other_Notes
2014-07-30CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2017-11-08CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Demonstrative_Examples, Modes_of_Introduction, Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings

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Page Last Updated: January 18, 2018