CWE

Common Weakness Enumeration

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ID

CWE-326: Inadequate Encryption Strength

Weakness ID: 326
Abstraction: Class
Structure: Simple
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+ Description
The product stores or transmits sensitive data using an encryption scheme that is theoretically sound, but is not strong enough for the level of protection required.
+ Extended Description
A weak encryption scheme can be subjected to brute force attacks that have a reasonable chance of succeeding using current attack methods and resources.
+ Relationships
Section HelpThis table 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
ChildOfPillarPillar - a weakness that is the most abstract type of weakness and represents a theme for all class/base/variant weaknesses related to it. A Pillar is different from a Category as a Pillar is still technically a type of weakness that describes a mistake, while a Category represents a common characteristic used to group related things.693Protection Mechanism Failure
ParentOfBaseBase - a weakness that is still mostly independent of a resource or technology, but with sufficient details to provide specific methods for detection and prevention. Base level weaknesses typically describe issues in terms of 2 or 3 of the following dimensions: behavior, property, technology, language, and resource.328Use of Weak Hash
Section HelpThis table 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 "Architectural Concepts" (CWE-1008)
NatureTypeIDName
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.1013Encrypt Data
+ Modes Of Introduction
Section HelpThe different Modes of Introduction provide information about how and when this weakness may be introduced. The Phase identifies a point in the life cycle at which introduction may occur, while the Note provides a typical scenario related to introduction during the given phase.
PhaseNote
Architecture and DesignCOMMISSION: This weakness refers to an incorrect design related to an architectural security tactic.
+ Applicable Platforms
Section HelpThis listing shows 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

Class: Not Language-Specific (Undetermined Prevalence)

+ Common Consequences
Section HelpThis table 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
Access Control
Confidentiality

Technical Impact: Bypass Protection Mechanism; Read Application Data

An attacker may be able to decrypt the data using brute force attacks.
+ Observed Examples
ReferenceDescription
Weak encryption
Weak encryption (chosen plaintext attack)
Weak encryption
Weak encryption produces same ciphertext from the same plaintext blocks.
Weak encryption
Weak encryption scheme
Weak encryption (XOR)
Weak encryption (reversible algorithm).
Weak encryption (one-to-one mapping).
Encryption error uses fixed salt, simplifying brute force / dictionary attacks (overlaps randomness).
+ Potential Mitigations

Phase: Architecture and Design

Use an encryption scheme that is currently considered to be strong by experts in the field.
+ Detection Methods

Automated Static Analysis

Automated static analysis, commonly referred to as Static Application Security Testing (SAST), can find some instances of this weakness by analyzing source code (or binary/compiled code) without having to execute it. Typically, this is done by building a model of data flow and control flow, then searching for potentially-vulnerable patterns that connect "sources" (origins of input) with "sinks" (destinations where the data interacts with external components, a lower layer such as the OS, etc.)

Effectiveness: High

+ Memberships
Section HelpThis 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.
NatureTypeIDName
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.719OWASP Top Ten 2007 Category A8 - Insecure Cryptographic Storage
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.720OWASP Top Ten 2007 Category A9 - Insecure Communications
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.729OWASP Top Ten 2004 Category A8 - Insecure Storage
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.816OWASP Top Ten 2010 Category A7 - Insecure Cryptographic Storage
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.934OWASP Top Ten 2013 Category A6 - Sensitive Data Exposure
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.959SFP Secondary Cluster: Weak Cryptography
MemberOfViewView - a subset of CWE entries that provides a way of examining CWE content. The two main view structures are Slices (flat lists) and Graphs (containing relationships between entries).1003Weaknesses for Simplified Mapping of Published Vulnerabilities
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.1029OWASP Top Ten 2017 Category A3 - Sensitive Data Exposure
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.1346OWASP Top Ten 2021 Category A02:2021 - Cryptographic Failures
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.1402Comprehensive Categorization: Encryption
+ Vulnerability Mapping Notes

Usage: Allowed-with-Review

(this CWE ID could be used to map to real-world vulnerabilities in limited situations requiring careful review)

Reason: Abstraction

Rationale:

This CWE entry is a Class and might have Base-level children that would be more appropriate

Comments:

Examine children of this entry to see if there is a better fit
+ Taxonomy Mappings
Mapped Taxonomy NameNode IDFitMapped Node Name
PLOVERWeak Encryption
OWASP Top Ten 2007A8CWE More SpecificInsecure Cryptographic Storage
OWASP Top Ten 2007A9CWE More SpecificInsecure Communications
OWASP Top Ten 2004A8CWE More SpecificInsecure Storage
+ References
[REF-7] Michael Howard and David LeBlanc. "Writing Secure Code". Chapter 8, "Cryptographic Foibles" Page 259. 2nd Edition. Microsoft Press. 2002-12-04. <https://www.microsoftpressstore.com/store/writing-secure-code-9780735617223>.
[REF-44] Michael Howard, David LeBlanc and John Viega. "24 Deadly Sins of Software Security". "Sin 21: Using the Wrong Cryptography." Page 315. McGraw-Hill. 2010.
+ Content History
+ Submissions
Submission DateSubmitterOrganization
2006-07-19
(CWE Draft 3, 2006-07-19)
PLOVER
+ Modifications
Modification DateModifierOrganization
2008-08-15Veracode
Suggested OWASP Top Ten 2004 mapping
2008-09-08CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Maintenance_Notes, Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings
2009-03-10CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2009-05-27CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Related_Attack_Patterns
2009-07-08CWE Content TeamMITRE
Clarified entry to focus on algorithms that do not have major weaknesses, but may not be strong enough for some purposes.
2009-07-27CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Common_Consequences, Description, Maintenance_Notes, Name
2009-10-29CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2010-02-16CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated References
2010-06-21CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2011-06-01CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Common_Consequences
2012-05-11CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated References, Relationships
2013-07-17CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2014-07-30CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2015-12-07CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2017-11-08CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Applicable_Platforms, Modes_of_Introduction, References, Relationships
2018-03-27CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated References, Relationships
2019-01-03CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Related_Attack_Patterns
2019-06-20CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2020-02-24CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Maintenance_Notes, Potential_Mitigations, Relationships
2021-10-28CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2023-01-31CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Description, Relationships
2023-04-27CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Detection_Factors, Relationships
2023-06-29CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Mapping_Notes
+ Previous Entry Names
Change DatePrevious Entry Name
2009-07-27Weak Encryption
Page Last Updated: October 26, 2023