Public Vulnerability Reports

Symantec AntiVirus IOCTL Kernel Privilege Escalation Vulnerability



Symantec has a wide range of Anti-Virus and Internet Security products
that are designed to protect users from viruses and other harmful
software. More information can be found on the Symantec site at


Local exploitation of a design error vulnerability in Symantec Corp.
AntiVirus can allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code with kernel

The vulnerability specifically exists due to improper address space
validation when the NAVENG and NAVEX15 device drivers process IOCTL
0x222AD3, 0x222AD7, and 0x222ADB. An attacker can overwrite a user
supplied address, including code segments, with a constant double word
value by supplying a specially crafted Irp to the IOCTL handler


Successful exploitation allows an attacker to obtain elevated privileges
by exploiting the kernel. This could allow the attacker to gain control
of the affected system. However, local access is required for
exploitation to be successful.

Note that since the attacker can only overwrite with a constant double-
word value, exploitation is not completely straight forward. However,
this does not significantly impact the difficulty of exploitation since
code segments can be overwritten within the kernel.


iDefense has confirmed the existence of this vulnerability within
version 10 of Symantec Client Security as of this writing. Previous
versions, as well as relating products, which contain the NAVENG.SYS and
NAVEX15.SYS drivers are suspected to be vulnerable as well.


iDefense is currently unaware of any effective workaround for this


Symantec has released updated device drivers via LiveUpdate. More
information regarding this issue can be found in Symantec's advisory,
SYM06-020. You can find their advisory at the following link:


The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the
name CVE-2006-4927 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in
the CVE list (, which standardizes names for
security problems.


09/19/2006 Initial vendor notification
09/19/2006 Initial vendor response
10/05/2006 Coordinated public disclosure


This vulnerability was reported to iDefense by Rubén Santamarta of

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Copyright © 2006 Verisign, Inc.

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