Public Vulnerability Reports

Motorola Netopia netOctopus SDCS Stack Buffer Overflow Vulnerability



The Software Distribution Center Server (SDCS) is used to remotely install and manage software on client computers throughout an enterprise. The product is no longer supported, and does not have a landing page.


Remote exploitation of a stack-based buffer overflow vulnerability in Motorola Inc.'s Netopia netOctopus SDCS could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the affected service.

The vulnerability exists within the code responsible for parsing client requests. When reading in a request from the network, a 32-bit integer is read in that specifies the number of bytes that follow. This value is not validated, and is then used to read data into a fixed-size stack buffer. This results in an exploitable stack buffer overflow.


Exploitation of this vulnerability results in the execution of arbitrary code with the privileges of the affected service, usually SYSTEM. To exploit this vulnerability, all an attacker requires is the ability to connect to the targeted server via TCP port 3814.


iDefense has confirmed the existence of this vulnerability in Netopia netOctopus SDCS version 5.1.2. Previous versions may also be affected.


iDefense is currently unaware of any workaround for this issue.


Motorola has ceased support for this product. They have provided the following guidance to existing customers "To prevent these attacks, the user should discontinue use of the netOctopus SDC." Additional information can be found on their site.


The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the name CVE-2008-2153 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in the CVE list (, which standardizes names for security problems.


04/24/2008 - Initial vendor contact
07/14/2008 - Initial vendor response (product is discontinued)
07/14/2008 - Public disclosure


This vulnerability was reported to iDefense by Stephen Fewer of Harmony Security (

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