WordPress Plugin WP Statistics Patches XSS Flaw

A move-web site scripting vulnerability in WordPress plugin WP Statistics should have enabled complete website takeover.

WordPress plugin WP Statistics has patched cross-website online scripting (XSS) vulnerability to allow for full website takeover if the internet site is working under positive non-default settings.

WP Statistics offers website owners a tool to analyze website online information, consisting of the number of visitors to the website, which browser visitors are using, and greater. The plugin is made via VeronaLabs and has an extra than 500,000 lively installations.


The unauthenticated stored XSS flaw exists in a plugin that allows an internet site to apply a header to discover the website visitors’ IP addresses. XSS can be a severe vulnerability that can permit attackers to inject client-side scripts into internet pages, which can be considered with other customers’ aid. However, it’s far essential to word that this vulnerability can only be exploited whilst the impacted website uses precise configurations that do not default – that means that default settings are not vulnerable, said researchers with Sucuri who observed the flaw.

“Certain styles of facts might appear safe, which includes the tourist’s IP cope with, however, in reality, aren’t usually what you expect,” stated Antony Garand, a protection vulnerability researcher at Sucuri, in a Wednesday analysis. “Due to sure assumptions from the developers, it’s miles viable for traffic to inject malicious code on administrative pages, main to a full internet site takeover.”

Versions of the plugin before 12.6.7 are prone to the unauthenticated saved move-site scripting vulnerability; a patch has been issued in version 12.6.7 that addresses the flaw. Researchers stated that they made an initial touch with the developer regarding the flaw on June 26, 2019. The patch changed into released on July 1.
IP Address Abuse

The vulnerability stems from the plugin failing to sanitize or validate users’ IP deal while using a header to identify their IP address – allowing a bad actor to inject web sites with malicious code potentially.

By default, websites the usage the plugin can without problems locate site visitors’ IP addresses; however, when web sites running the plugin are utilizing a firewall, the user IP contacts that firewall before contacting the website.

That means the internet site no longer realizes what the original user’s IP deal with is earlier than it contacted the firewall; to treat this, the firewall adds a header that consists of the users’ unique IP, permitting the web page to discover the authentic user.

However, due to the loss of IP validation within the plugin, an attacker could abuse this feature with the aid of emitting a forwarded IP. As a result, the plugin fails to validate the IP, allowing attackers to inject malicious JavaScript code as their own IP, stored and carried out on administrative pages.

“Since the default value of the IP addresses is the header value and it isn’t sanitized or confirmed with the FILTER_VALIDATE_IP method, it will be saved as-is that if there are not a couple of IP addresses inside the header,” researchers said.

Specific Settings

There are several roadblocks that an attacker needs to conquer to abuse this flaw. First of all, a website is most effective prone whilst the plugin uses a header to discover the IP deal with the vacationer. The website should also use a bypassable firewall (meaning the website must be configured to accept connections from all people) and now not handiest the ones forwarded by a firewall).

Under those situations, an attacker should emit a forwarded IP: “The common thing of these settings is the forwarded fee being completely managed through the attacker,” researchers said.

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