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Security Services

Microsoft PowerPoint LinkedSlideAtom Heap Overflow Vulnerability



Microsoft PowerPoint is an application used for constructing presentations, and comes with the Microsoft Office suite. For more information, see the vendor's site found at the following link.


Remote exploitation of a heap-based buffer overflow vulnerability in Microsoft Corp.'s PowerPoint could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the current user.

The vulnerability occurs during the parsing of two related PowerPoint record types. The first record type, the "LinkedSlideAtom" record, is used to specify collaboration information for different slides. One of the fields in this record is used to specify the number of certain records that are present in the file. The code responsible for filling the array used to store the records does not perform any bounds checking when storing elements into the array. This results in a heap-based buffer overflow vulnerability.


Exploitation of this vulnerability results in the execution of arbitrary code with the privileges of the user opening the file. To exploit this vulnerability, an attacker needs to convince a user to open a malicious file. If the targeted user is running PowerPoint 2000, and the "Office Document Open Confirmation Tool" is not installed, then it is possible to exploit this vulnerability directly through the browser.


iDefense has confirmed the existence of this vulnerability in the following versions of PowerPoint:

PowerPoint 2000 SP3

PowerPoint 2002 (XP) SP3

PowerPoint 2003 SP3

PowerPoint 2007 and PowerPoint 2007 SP1 are not affected.


iDefense is currently unaware of any workaround for this issue.


Microsoft Corp. has released a patch which addresses this issue. Information about downloadable vendor updates can be found by clicking on the URLs shown.


The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the name CVE-2010-0030 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in the CVE list (, which standardizes names for security problems.


07/08/2009 Initial Vendor Notification
07/08/2009 Initial Vendor Reply
02/09/2010 Coordinated Public Disclosure


This vulnerability was discovered by Sean Larsson, iDefense Labs.

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