Denial of Service (DoS) Affecting org.apache.poi:poi package, versions [3.7 ,3.16-beta1)



    Attack Complexity Low

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  • published 18 Nov 2016
  • disclosed 14 Oct 2016
  • credit Unknown

Introduced: 14 Oct 2016

CVE NOT AVAILABLE CWE-400 Open this link in a new tab

How to fix?

Upgrade org.apache.poi:poi to version 3.16-beta1 or higher.


org.apache.poi:poi is a java library for reading and writing Microsoft Office binary and OOXML file formats.

Affected versions of this package are vulnerable to Denial of Service (DoS). The calculation of dataSize in Ole10Native's initialization is faulty, causing the code to allocate a large buffer and resulting in Out-Of-Memory.


Denial of Service (DoS) describes a family of attacks, all aimed at making a system inaccessible to its intended and legitimate users.

Unlike other vulnerabilities, DoS attacks usually do not aim at breaching security. Rather, they are focused on making websites and services unavailable to genuine users resulting in downtime.

One popular Denial of Service vulnerability is DDoS (a Distributed Denial of Service), an attack that attempts to clog network pipes to the system by generating a large volume of traffic from many machines.

When it comes to open source libraries, DoS vulnerabilities allow attackers to trigger such a crash or crippling of the service by using a flaw either in the application code or from the use of open source libraries.

Two common types of DoS vulnerabilities:

  • High CPU/Memory Consumption- An attacker sending crafted requests that could cause the system to take a disproportionate amount of time to process. For example, commons-fileupload:commons-fileupload.

  • Crash - An attacker sending crafted requests that could cause the system to crash. For Example, npm ws package