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Microsoft Office Visio Viewer ActiveX Memory Corruption Vulnerability



Visio Viewer is an ActiveX control used to render Visio documents inside of Internet Explorer.


Remote exploitation of a memory corruption vulnerability in Microsoft Corp.'s Visio Viewer could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the current user. The vulnerability occurs when an embedded Visio file contains a corrupted pagesheet record. When parsing this record, memory is accessed after it has already been freed. This can lead to memory corruption, which can result in the execution of arbitrary code.


Exploitation of this vulnerability results in the execution of arbitrary code with the privileges of the user viewing the Web page. To exploit this vulnerability, a targeted user must load a malicious Web page created by an attacker. An attacker typically accomplishes this via social engineering or injecting content into compromised, trusted sites. After the user visits the malicious Web page, no further user interaction is needed. In order to exploit this vulnerability, an attacker would have to properly manipulate the layout of the heap.


The following versions of Visio Viewer are vulnerable: 2007 SP2, 2010 (32 and 64-bit), 2010 SP1 (32 and 64-bit)


Since this vulnerability is present in an ActiveX control, the killbit can be set to prevent the control from loading in Internet Explorer. The CLSID for the control is "F8CF7A98-2C45-4c8d-9151-2D716989DDAB." Setting the killbit for this CLSID will prevent exploitation.


Microsoft Corp. has addressed this vulnerability with the release of updates to Visio Viewer. More information can be found at the following URL:


The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the name CVE-2012-0018 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in the CVE list (, which standardizes names for security problems.


09/28/2011 Initial Vendor Notification
09/28/2011 Initial Vendor Reply
05/08/2012 Coordinated Public Disclosure


This vulnerability was reported to iDefense by Luigi Auriemma.

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Copyright © 2012 Verisign, Inc.

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