J2EE Bad Practices: Use of System.exit()

A J2EE application uses System.exit(), which also shuts down its container.


Description

It is never a good idea for a web application to attempt to shut down the application container. Access to a function that can shut down the application is an avenue for Denial of Service (DoS) attacks.

Demonstrations

The following examples help to illustrate the nature of this weakness and describe methods or techniques which can be used to mitigate the risk.

Note that the examples here are by no means exhaustive and any given weakness may have many subtle varieties, each of which may require different detection methods or runtime controls.

Example One

Included in the doPost() method defined below is a call to System.exit() in the event of a specific exception.

Public void doPost(HttpServletRequest request, HttpServletResponse response) throws ServletException, IOException {
  try {
    ...
  } catch (ApplicationSpecificException ase) {
    logger.error("Caught: " + ase.toString());
    System.exit(1);
  }
}

See Also

SEI CERT Oracle Secure Coding Standard for Java - Guidelines 07. Exceptional Behavior (ERR)

Weaknesses in this category are related to the rules and recommendations in the Exceptional Behavior (ERR) section of the SEI CERT Oracle Secure Coding Standard for Java.

SFP Secondary Cluster: Use of an Improper API

This category identifies Software Fault Patterns (SFPs) within the Use of an Improper API cluster (SFP3).

7PK - Time and State

This category represents one of the phyla in the Seven Pernicious Kingdoms vulnerability classification. It includes weaknesses related to the improper management of t...

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 in Software Written in Java

This view (slice) covers issues that are found in Java programs that are not common to all languages.


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