When it comes to our full disclosures of vulnerabilities as a protest of the continued inappropriate behavior of the WordPress Support Forum moderators, we are certainly not above criticism, but it is incredible to us that other security companies escape any criticism despite repeatedly doing things that seems out of line with them actually caring about keeping websites secure. In a post earlier today we noted how a security journalist didn’t link to our post about a vulnerability we full disclosed, apparently due to including a proof of concept for confirming that vulnerability exists, while linking to a post from the web security company Sucuri providing payloads for how hackers were trying to exploit vulnerabilities. That seems hypocritical, but looking at Sucuri’s post we noticed something else, they seemed to be unconcerned that a plugin with an unfixed vulnerability that they believed was being exploited was still in the Plugin Directory.
We think that good security journalism is something that could greatly help to improve the poor state of not just the security surrounding WordPress plugins, but security in general. Unfortunately what we have found is that security journalists seem to almost uniformly seem to do a very bad job. As a less serious example of that, recently we have seen odd responses from security journalists to us including proof of concepts with vulnerabilities we are disclosing.
On Friday we detailed a privilege escalation vulnerability in the plugin Woocommerce User Email Verification. While that is a very bad security vulnerability in terms of what could be done with it, it at least could be seen as mistake as opposed to a failure to handle security in a fundamental way. That can’t be said about an option update vulnerability our proactive monitoring of changes made to plugins in the Plugin Directory to try to catch serious vulnerabilities spotted in the plugin at the same time.
This post provides the details of a vulnerability in the WordPress plugin Woocommerce User Email Verification not discovered by us, where the discoverer hadn’t provided the details needed for us to confirm the vulnerability while we were adding it to the data set for our service, so its contents are limited to subscribers of our service. If you are not currently a subscriber, you can try out the service for free and then you can view the contents of the post. There are a lot of other reason that you will want to sign up beyond access to posts like this one, including that you would have already been warned about this vulnerability if your website was vulnerable due to it.