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OpenVAS Security Advisory (OVSA20160202)

Date: 2nd February 2016
Product: Greenbone Security Assistant ≥ 6.0.0 and < 6.0.9
Vendor: OpenVAS <http://www.openvas.org/>
Risk: Low, CVSS 3.3 (AV:A/AC:L/Au:N/C:N/I:N/A:P)


It has been identified that Greenbone Security Assistant (GSA) is vulnerable to a denial-of-service attack due to a improper handling of UTF-8 in GET and POST requests. Given the attacker has access to a GSA web interface, a respective HTTP request can crash gsad.

Current Status

As of the 3rd February, the state of the vulnerabilities is believed to be as follows. Patches have been supplied by Greenbone Networks which successfully resolve this vulnerability. A new release of Greenbone Security Assistant for stable release OpenVAS-8 has been created which incorporates the patches.


OpenVAS recommends that the publicly available patches are applied. If building from source, then patches r24264 and r24266 (for Greenbone Security Assistant 6.0.x of OpenVAS-8) should be obtained from the OpenVAS SVN repository. For trunk (beta status of OpenVAS-9) this was solved with r24262 and r24265.

A fresh tarball containing the latest stable release of Greenbone Security Assistant 6.0 (OpenVAS-8) can be obtained from:

In the event that OpenVAS has been supplied as part of a distribution then the vendor or organisation concerned should be contacted for a patch.


On the 26th January 2016, Rene Behring reported the vulnerability. On 28th, patches were applied and tests started. Tarballs released and announcement published on the 3rd February.


OpenVAS would like to thank Rene Behring for the initial report.