22 Feb

Closures of Very Popular WordPress Plugins, Week of February 22

While we already are far ahead of other companies in keeping up with vulnerabilities in WordPress plugins (amazingly that isn’t an exaggeration), in looking in to how we could get even better we noticed that in a recent instance were a vulnerability was exploited in a plugin, we probably could have warned our customers about the vulnerability even sooner if we had looked at the plugin when it was first closed on the Plugin Directory instead of when the vulnerability was fixed (though as far as we are aware the exploitation started after we had warned our customers of the fix). So we are now monitoring to see if any of the 1,000 most popular plugins are closed on the Plugin Directory and then seeing if it looks like that was due to a vulnerability.

This week two of those plugins were closed and one has been reopened.

File Manager

File Manager, which has 300,000+ installs, was closed on Wednesday. The reason given by the developer for the closure was:

Thanks for contacting our support. WordPress reported issues with the old elfinder library. We have updated plugin library, it’s back now:)

There had been three changelog entries for elfinder from version after the version that was being used:

  • [php:core:security] Add an option `urlUploadFilter`(@type callable) to elFinder class constructor options
  • [php:core:security] [CVE-2019-6257] Fixed SSRF vulnerability of `elFinder::get_remote_contents()` [Reporter: Do Ha Anh of Viettel Cyber Security]
  • [php:core:security] [CVE-2019-5884] Fixed information leakage vulnerability [Reporter: Ravindra Rajaram (ravindra.rajaram@broadcom.com) and Hamsalekha Madiraju (hamsalekha.madiraju@broadcom.com)]

As far as we have gathered so far, it looks none of those would have caused a vulnerability for this plugin due to the restriction on who can access its functionality, so removing the plugin doesn’t necessarily make a lot of sense.

In looking over the plugin we found a fairly serious authenticated remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability.

The plugin was reopened the next day.

PayPal for WooCommerce

PayPal for WooCommerce, which has 40,000+ installs, was closed on Thursday. The developer has responded to the closure by stating “We have an issue with our WordPress account that we’re working to get resolved ASAP, but it does not affect the functionality of the plugin at all.”, were not sure what that is supposed to mean (Update 2/26/19: The comment from the developer has been deleted for an explained reason (yet more cover up by the WordPress team it would seem), but you can see it existed here). We found that the plugin is fairly insecure.