CWE

Common Weakness Enumeration

A Community-Developed List of Software & Hardware Weakness Types

CWE Top 25 Most Dangerous Weaknesses
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ID

CWE-821: Incorrect Synchronization

Weakness ID: 821
Abstraction: Base
Structure: Simple
Status: Incomplete
Presentation Filter:
+ Description
The software utilizes a shared resource in a concurrent manner, but it does not correctly synchronize access to the resource.
+ Extended Description
If access to a shared resource is not correctly synchronized, then the resource may not be in a state that is expected by the software. This might lead to unexpected or insecure behaviors, especially if an attacker can influence the shared resource.
+ 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
ChildOfClassClass - a weakness that is described in a very abstract fashion, typically independent of any specific language or technology. More specific than a Pillar Weakness, but more general than a Base Weakness. Class level weaknesses typically describe issues in terms of 1 or 2 of the following dimensions: behavior, property, and resource.662Improper Synchronization
ParentOfVariantVariant - a weakness that is linked to a certain type of product, typically involving a specific language or technology. More specific than a Base weakness. Variant level weaknesses typically describe issues in terms of 3 to 5 of the following dimensions: behavior, property, technology, language, and resource.572Call to Thread run() instead of start()
ParentOfVariantVariant - a weakness that is linked to a certain type of product, typically involving a specific language or technology. More specific than a Base weakness. Variant level weaknesses typically describe issues in terms of 3 to 5 of the following dimensions: behavior, property, technology, language, and resource.574EJB Bad Practices: Use of Synchronization Primitives
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.1088Synchronous Access of Remote Resource without Timeout
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.1264Hardware Logic with Insecure De-Synchronization between Control and Data Channels
+ Relevant to the view "Software Development" (CWE-699)
NatureTypeIDName
MemberOfCategoryCategory - a CWE entry that contains a set of other entries that share a common characteristic.557Concurrency Issues
+ Relevant to the view "CISQ Quality Measures (2020)" (CWE-1305)
NatureTypeIDName
ChildOfClassClass - a weakness that is described in a very abstract fashion, typically independent of any specific language or technology. More specific than a Pillar Weakness, but more general than a Base Weakness. Class level weaknesses typically describe issues in terms of 1 or 2 of the following dimensions: behavior, property, and resource.662Improper Synchronization
+ 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
Integrity
Confidentiality
Other

Technical Impact: Modify Application Data; Read Application Data; Alter Execution Logic

+ Notes

Maintenance

Deeper research is necessary for synchronization and related mechanisms, including locks, mutexes, semaphores, and other mechanisms. Multiple entries are dependent on this research, which includes relationships to concurrency, race conditions, reentrant functions, etc. CWE-662 and its children - including CWE-667, CWE-820, CWE-821, and others - may need to be modified significantly, along with their relationships.
+ Content History
+ Submissions
Submission DateSubmitterOrganization
2010-08-06CWE Content TeamMITRE
+ Modifications
Modification DateModifierOrganization
2010-12-13CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2011-06-01CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Common_Consequences, Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings
2012-05-11CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings
2019-01-03CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2019-09-23CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Maintenance_Notes
2020-02-24CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2020-06-25CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
2020-08-20CWE Content TeamMITRE
updated Relationships
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Page Last Updated: August 20, 2020