parser - Dave's Blog


So You Want To Write Your Own CSV code? · TBurette

2014 May 25, 1:46

Additional considerations beyond the naïve implementation of a CSV parser.

PermalinkCommentscsv technical

Stripe CTF - Level 7

2012 Sep 13, 5:00

Level 7 of the Stripe CTF involved running a length extension attack on the level 7 server's custom crypto code.


def logs(id):
rows = get_logs(id)
return render_template('logs.html', logs=rows)


def verify_signature(user_id, sig, raw_params):
# get secret token for user_id
row = g.db.select_one('users', {'id': user_id})
except db.NotFound:
raise BadSignature('no such user_id')
secret = str(row['secret'])

h = hashlib.sha1()
h.update(secret + raw_params)
print 'computed signature', h.hexdigest(), 'for body', repr(raw_params)
if h.hexdigest() != sig:
raise BadSignature('signature does not match')
return True


The level 7 web app is a web API in which clients submit signed RESTful requests and some actions are restricted to particular clients. The goal is to view the response to one of the restricted actions. The first issue is that there is a logs path to display the previous requests for a user and although the logs path requires the client to be authenticatd, it doesn't restrict the logs you view to be for the user for which you are authenticated. So you can manually change the number in the '/logs/[#]' to '/logs/1' to view the logs for the user ID 1 who can make restricted requests. The level 7 web app can be exploited with replay attacks but you won't find in the logs any of the restricted requests we need to run for our goal. And we can't just modify the requests because they are signed.

However they are signed using their own custom signing code which can be exploited by a length extension attack. All Merkle–Damgård hash algorithms (which includes MD5, and SHA) have the property that if you hash data of the form (secret + data) where data is known and the length but not content of secret is known you can construct the hash for a new message (secret + data + padding + newdata) where newdata is whatever you like and padding is determined using newdata, data, and the length of secret. You can find a script on VNSecurity blog that will tell you the new hash and padding per the above. With that I produced my new restricted request based on another user's previous request. The original request was the following.

The new request with padding and my new content was the following.
My new data in the new request is able to overwrite the waffle parameter because their parser fills in a map without checking if the parameter existed previously.


Code review red flags included custom crypto looking code. However I am not a crypto expert and it was difficult for me to find the solution to this level.

PermalinkCommentshash internet length-extension security sha1 stripe-ctf technical web

QuickBase Formula Pretty Printer and Syntax Highlighter

2008 Oct 5, 9:17

Sarah asked me if I knew of a syntax highlighter for the QuickBase formula language which she uses at work. I couldn't find one but thought it might be fun to make a QuickBase Formula syntax highlighter based on the QuickBase help's description of the formula syntax. Thankfully the language is relatively simple since my skills with ANTLR, the parser generator, are rusty now and I've only used it previously for personal projects (like Javaish, the ridiculous Java based shell idea I had).

With the help of some great ANTLR examples and an ANTLR cheat sheet I was able to come up with the grammar that parses the QuickBase Formula syntax and prints out the same formula marked up with HTML SPAN tags and various CSS classes. ANTLR produces the parser in Java which I wrapped up in an applet, put in a jar, and embedded in an HTML page. The script in that page runs user input through the applet's parser and sticks the output at the bottom of the page with appropriate CSS rules to highlight and print the formula in a pretty fashion.

What I learned:

PermalinkCommentsjava technical programming quickbase language antlr antlrworks

ANTLR Cheat Sheet - ANTLR 3 - ANTLR Project

2008 Oct 2, 9:26Cheat sheet on ANTLR's syntax. ANTLR's another language parser generator.PermalinkCommentsantlr cheat parser language grammar opensource java software syntax quickreference
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