Mac Sites Are Being Hacked By Blackhat XSS Hackers

Posted by xssworm on November 23rd, 2007

There have been a lot of Mac web blogs hacker defaced recently by hackers that are using 0day XSS scripting exploits in Wordpress.MacApper Hacked

One victim of the 0day XSS Miles Evans from writes:

“I took the liberty of analyzing the hack a bit in the hopes it helps others prevent this from happening to them. Although we had updated our blog to the latest version of Wordpress, near as I can tell the hack was accomplished via an XSS (cross site scripting) exploit. By executing some malicious code in the query string the hacker was able to write to our .htaccess file the following:

#this is for rotten mac fanbois - suck it down.
#RewriteRule ^divider.png$ /rotten/divider.png [L]
#RewriteRule ^rotten.jpg$ /rotten/rotten.jpg [L]
#RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !^/rotten.*
#RewriteRule !rotten/index.html$ /rotten/index.html [L]

The problem is that the exploit appears to be unknown to Wordpress as far as I can see (I will be reporting it to them), so other Wordpress blogs may be susceptible. I wish I could offer more help.”

“[…] By default WP wants to handle the .htaccess file dynamically so it needs to be set world writable. We tweaked this before putting the blog back online and we should be safe now. If anyone needs a hand feel free to email me (milesevans _AT_”

Loweded Wookie adds some helpful technical feedback for advanced Mac users:

When I was using XOOPS I got hacked once but all the little retard did was create a file called index.html. All I did was alter the Apache file so that PHP files were executed before HTML files and any hack after that from little brained people would have been thwarted. Any further attempts to hack WordPress are thwarted by a simple permissions change. Of course .Mac accounts are different because the hacker would first have to find your machine, intercept the Kerberos encrypted password (yeah, good luck on that one), and then do some damage. Considering many .Mac pages are edited using iWeb then any hacked pages would be up for a grand total of… however long it takes to upload to .Mac. Hell, comment floods can be removed simply by clicking the comment box and hitting delete in iWeb.”

Another reader, Chris, asks the very question that came into our mind as we read this report:

“To even GET data to the server, it would have to be a type 2 attack. I doubt this was overlooked in the release of WordPress 2.3.1, since the primary release was for security. Secondly, the vulnerable page would have to be a publicly accessible page, making a type 2 XSS even more rare. Finally, why would you possibly leave your HTACCESS file world-writable, and how would this “hacker” write files back to your server using a type 2 exploit anyways? At most it could be redirected to another site. Please explain.”

Wookie offers more technical advice:

“It’s more common than you know. This was something that needed to be done on older versions of XOOPS. It had to have at least administrator rights to access the file but the passwords etc are all plain text so it’s reasonably easy to hack a PHP based content management system and WordPress is no exception.”

Another Macintosh web blog,, a Macblog site on blogspot has been taken down by a blackhat XSS hacker. The black-hat technique used in this attack was also a Wordpress XSS overwriting of a world-writable .HTACESS file.

A quote from the hacked site: “This website has been flagged for excessive Apple fanboism, and has been taken down for 24 hours. This is a message to the rest of the Mac community, so listen up. Ever heard of hubris? Tone it down, and you will not be attacked. Everyone else is open game.”

The XSS Blackhat hacker, known as Malcor, has posted many threats to his own pages:

“The target will be posted on this site once the attack begins. I will be sending said target a note with a heads up before. Hopefully, by the end of the attack, a sea change will begin to happen. Does anyone disagree with me that the Mac world be a much more pleasant place if smugness wasn’t tolerated?”

“The attacks will be untraceable, and unstoppable.”