Sensitive Information in Resource Not Removed Before Reuse

When a device releases a resource such as memory or a file for reuse by other entities, information contained in the resource is not fully cleared prior to reuse of the resource.


When resources are released, they can be made available for reuse. For example, after memory is used and released, an operating system may make the memory available to another process, or disk space may be reallocated when a file is deleted. As removing information requires time and additional resources, operating systems do not usually clear the previously written information.

Even when the resource is reused by the same process, this weakness can arise when new data is not as large as the old data, which leaves portions of the old data still available. Equivalent errors can occur in other situations where the length of data is variable but the associated data structure is not. If memory is not cleared after use, the information may be read by less trustworthy parties when the memory is reallocated.

See Also

Memory and Storage Issues

Weaknesses in this category are typically associated with memory (e.g., DRAM, SRAM) and storage technologies (e.g., NAND Flash, OTP, EEPROM, and eMMC).

SFP Secondary Cluster: Exposed Data

This category identifies Software Fault Patterns (SFPs) within the Exposed Data cluster (SFP23).

CERT C++ Secure Coding Section 08 - Memory Management (MEM)

Weaknesses in this category are related to rules in the Memory Management (MEM) section of the CERT C++ Secure Coding Standard. Since not all rules map to specific wea...

Comprehensive CWE Dictionary

This view (slice) covers all the elements in CWE.

Weaknesses Introduced During Implementation

This view (slice) lists weaknesses that can be introduced during implementation.

Weaknesses Introduced During Design

This view (slice) lists weaknesses that can be introduced during design.

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