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-7: J2EE Misconfiguration: Missing Custom Error Page

Weakness ID: 7
Abstraction: Variant
Structure: Simple
Status: Incomplete
Presentation Filter:
+ Description
The default error page of a web application should not display sensitive information about the software system.
+ Extended Description

A Web application must define a default error page for 4xx errors (e.g. 404), 5xx (e.g. 500) errors and catch java.lang.Throwable exceptions to prevent attackers from mining information from the application container's built-in error response.

When an attacker explores a web site looking for vulnerabilities, the amount of information that the site provides is crucial to the eventual success or failure of any attempted attacks.

+ 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
ChildOfClassClass756Missing Custom Error Page
+ Relevant to the view "Development Concepts" (CWE-699)
NatureTypeIDName
MemberOfCategoryCategory4J2EE Environment Issues
ChildOfClassClass756Missing Custom Error Page
+ 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
Architecture and Design
Implementation
+ 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

Java (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
Confidentiality

Technical Impact: Read Application Data

A stack trace might show the attacker a malformed SQL query string, the type of database being used, and the version of the application container. This information enables the attacker to target known vulnerabilities in these components.
+ Demonstrative Examples

Example 1

In the snippet below, an unchecked runtime exception thrown from within the try block may cause the container to display its default error page (which may contain a full stack trace, among other things).

(bad code)
Example Language: Java 
Public void doPost(HttpServletRequest request, HttpServletResponse response) throws ServletException, IOException {
try {
...

} catch (ApplicationSpecificException ase) {
logger.error("Caught: " + ase.toString());

}

}
+ Potential Mitigations

Phase: Implementation

Handle exceptions appropriately in source code.

Phases: Implementation; System Configuration

Always define appropriate error pages. The application configuration should specify a default error page in order to guarantee that the application will never leak error messages to an attacker. Handling standard HTTP error codes is useful and user-friendly in addition to being a good security practice, and a good configuration will also define a last-chance error handler that catches any exception that could possibly be thrown by the application.

Phase: Implementation

Do not attempt to process an error or attempt to mask it.

Phase: Implementation

Verify return values are correct and do not supply sensitive information about the system.
+ 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
7 Pernicious KingdomsJ2EE Misconfiguration: Missing Error Handling
+ References
[REF-65] M. Howard, D. LeBlanc and J. Viega. "19 Deadly Sins of Software Security". McGraw-Hill/Osborne. 2005-07-26.
+ Content History
Submissions
Submission DateSubmitterOrganization
7 Pernicious Kingdoms
Modifications
Modification DateModifierOrganization
2008-07-01Sean EidemillerCigital
added/updated demonstrative examples
2008-07-01Eric DalciCigital
updated Time_of_Introduction
2008-09-08CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships, Other_Notes, Taxonomy_Mappings
2008-10-14CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Description
2009-03-10CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Name, Relationships
2011-06-01CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Common_Consequences
2012-05-11CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Demonstrative_Examples, Relationships
2012-10-30CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Potential_Mitigations
2014-06-23CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Common_Consequences, Description, Other_Notes, Potential_Mitigations
2014-07-30CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2017-11-08CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated References
Previous Entry Names
Change DatePrevious Entry Name
2009-03-10J2EE Misconfiguration: Missing Error Handling

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Page Last Updated: January 18, 2018