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Home » Hacking News » Red Hat RHSA-2003:174-01: Tcpdump privilege dropping

Red Hat RHSA-2003:174-01: Tcpdump privilege dropping

by Nikola Strahija on May 15th, 2003 Due to a compilation error, the Red Hat tcpdump doesn't drop permissions to user "pcap" and will continue to run as root, unless the "-U" flag was specified while compiling. Users of tcpdump are advised to upgrade to these errata packages.

Red Hat Security Advisory

Synopsis: Updated tcpdump packages fix privilege dropping error
Advisory ID: RHSA-2003:174-01
Issue date: 2003-05-15
Updated on: 2003-05-15
Product: Red Hat Linux
Keywords: tcpdump
Cross references:
Obsoletes: RHSA-2003:032-
CVE Names: CAN-2003-0194

1. Topic:

Updated tcpdump packages that correctly drop privileges on startup are now

2. Relevant releases/architectures:

Red Hat Linux 7.1 - i386
Red Hat Linux 7.2 - i386, ia64
Red Hat Linux 7.3 - i386
Red Hat Linux 8.0 - i386
Red Hat Linux 9 - i386

3. Problem description:

Tcpdump is a command-line tool for monitoring network traffic.

The Red Hat tcpdump packages advertise that by default tcpdump will drop
permissions to user 'pcap'. Due to a compilation error this did not
happen, and tcpdump would run as root unless the '-U' flag was specified.

Users of tcpdump are advised to upgrade to these errata packages, which
contain are compiled so that by default tcpdump will drop privileges to the
'pcap' user.

4. Solution:

Before applying this update, make sure all previously released errata
relevant to your system have been applied.

Please note that this update is available via Red Hat Network. To use Red
Hat Network, launch the Red Hat Update Agent with the following command:


This will start an interactive process that will result in the appropriate
RPMs being upgraded on your system.

5. Bug IDs fixed ( for more info):

88881 - CAN-2003-0145 RADUIS tcpdump vulnerability
90208 - CAN-2003-0194 tcpdump didn't drop root to pcap user like promised

6. RPMs required:

Red Hat Linux 7.1:



Red Hat Linux 7.2:




Red Hat Linux 7.3:



Red Hat Linux 8.0:



Red Hat Linux 9:



7. Verification:

MD5 sum Package Name
fac820eb58d79fc58d30bff1fd11f33d 7.1/en/os/SRPMS/tcpdump-3.6.3-
3eadddac8cdf6ae0b14e8016f651e1f0 7.1/en/os/i386/tcpdump-3.6.3-
5f5c14bd0dfdaa5b0d5dbc0fb70da395 7.2/en/os/SRPMS/tcpdump-3.6.3-
c48e86db37c7f767ec8931ebb54fc0ae 7.2/en/os/i386/tcpdump-3.6.3-
39da71bfef8520c979db8cf21c4f6781 7.2/en/os/ia64/tcpdump-3.6.3-
f9de6824ac351207bd105978eefed89d 7.3/en/os/SRPMS/tcpdump-3.6.3-
8d54631bf99d61090f0752f29ef51f8f 7.3/en/os/i386/tcpdump-3.6.3-
67a36a50ec50a8aa2d32b2462fae653d 8.0/en/os/SRPMS/tcpdump-3.6.3-
afba9bea894090b9c179979403347629 8.0/en/os/i386/tcpdump-3.6.3-
1b1b577c9ebfe84f735a6498140e1e7f 9/en/os/SRPMS/tcpdump-3.7.2-1.9.1.src.rpm
6cff8bf6b2425c361eec70ba3017d82b 9/en/os/i386/tcpdump-3.7.2-1.9.1.i386.rpm

These packages are GPG signed by Red Hat for security. Our key is
available at

You can verify each package with the following command:

rpm --checksig -v

If you only wish to verify that each package has not been corrupted or
tampered with, examine only the md5sum with the following command:


8. References:

9. Contact:

The Red Hat security contact is . More contact
details at

Copyright 2003 Red Hat, Inc.

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