One of the reasons that Greg Hoglund and I wrote Exploiting Software was
to gain a basic underdstanding of what we call "attack patterns".  The
idea is to abstract away from platform and language considerations (at
least some), and thus elevate the level of attack discussion.

We identify and discuss 48 attack patterns in Exploiting Software.  Each
of them has a handful of associated examples from real exploits.  I will
paste in the complete list below.  As you will see, we provided a start,
but there is plenty of work here remaining to be done.

Perhaps by talking about patterns of attack we can improve the signal to
noise ratio in the exploit discussion department.


Gary McGraw, Ph.D.
CTO, Cigital

Make the Client Invisible
Target Programs That Write to Privileged OS Resources 
Use a User-Supplied Configuration File to Run Commands That Elevate
Make Use of Configuration File Search Paths 
Direct Access to Executable Files 
Embedding Scripts within Scripts 
Leverage Executable Code in Nonexecutable Files 
Argument Injection 
Command Delimiters 
Multiple Parsers and Double Escapes 
User-Supplied Variable Passed to File System Calls 
Postfix NULL Terminator 
Postfix, Null Terminate, and Backslash 
Relative Path Traversal 
Client-Controlled Environment Variables 
User-Supplied Global Variables (DEBUG=1, PHP Globals, and So Forth) 
Session ID, Resource ID, and Blind Trust
Analog In-Band Switching Signals (aka "Blue Boxing") 
Attack Pattern Fragment: Manipulating Terminal Devices 
Simple Script Injection 
Embedding Script in Nonscript Elements 
XSS in HTTP Headers 
HTTP Query Strings 
User-Controlled Filename 
Passing Local Filenames to Functions That Expect a URL 
Meta-characters in E-mail Header
File System Function Injection, Content Based
Client-side Injection, Buffer Overflow
Cause Web Server Misclassification
Alternate Encoding the Leading Ghost Characters
Using Slashes in Alternate Encoding
Using Escaped Slashes in Alternate Encoding 
Unicode Encoding 
UTF-8 Encoding 
URL Encoding 
Alternative IP Addresses 
Slashes and URL Encoding Combined 
Web Logs 
Overflow Binary Resource File 
Overflow Variables and Tags 
Overflow Symbolic Links 
MIME Conversion 
HTTP Cookies 
Filter Failure through Buffer Overflow 
Buffer Overflow with Environment Variables 
Buffer Overflow in an API Call 
Buffer Overflow in Local Command-Line Utilities 
Parameter Expansion 
String Format Overflow in syslog() 

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