Google’s open source security team says OSS-Fuzz, its community fuzzing service, has helped fix more than 8,000 security vulnerabilities and 26,000 other bugs in open source projects since its 2016 debut.
We’ll even get our chequebook out, web giant says
And the group would like to see open source developers do more fuzzing to make the world a better place, or at least make software a bit more secure. So it’s offering concrete incentives versus exposure points.
Fuzzing, or fuzz testing, is a software testing technique that tries to find bugs by injecting random or semi-random data into software. It was developed by UW-Madison computer science professor Barton Miller in 1989 [PDF]. Miller wanted to understand how noise created by a rainstorm interfered with his dial-up modem connection to a Unix system, and this opened up new areas of research into code analysis.
Google launched OSS-Fuzz in 2016 in response to the Heartbleed vulnerability, a memory buffer overflow flaw that could have been detected by fuzz testing.
“At the time, though, fuzzing was not widely used and was cumbersome for developers, requiring extensive manual effort,” explain Jonathan Metzman and Dongge Liu, from Google’s Open Source Security Team, in a blog post.
OSS-Fuzz currently checks some 700 critical open source projects for bugs and in July spotted a serious flaw in the TinyGLTF project, a library that relies on the C library function wordexp() for file path expansion on untrusted paths from an input file.
“This vulnerability shows that it was possible to inject backticks into the input glTF file format and allow commands to be executed during parsing,” explained Metzman and Liu.
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