CompTIA Security+ Question C-99

Company XYZ has encountered an increased amount of buffer overflow attacks. The programmer has been tasked to identify the issue and report any findings. Which of the following is the FIRST step of action recommended in this scenario?

A. Baseline Reporting
B. Capability Maturity Model
C. Code Review
D. Quality Assurance and Testing

Answer: C

A buffer overflow attack attacks a vulnerability caused by poor coding in an application. Reviewing the code of the application will enable you to identify code that is vulnerable to buffer overflow.

A buffer overflow occurs when a program or process tries to store more data in a buffer (temporary data storage area) than it was intended to hold. Since buffers are created to contain a finite amount of data, the extra information – which has to go somewhere – can overflow into adjacent buffers, corrupting or overwriting the valid data held in them. Although it may occur accidentally through programming error, buffer overflow is an increasingly common type of security attack on data integrity. In buffer overflow attacks, the extra data may contain codes designed to trigger specific actions, in effect sending new instructions to the attacked computer that could, for example, damage the user’s files, change data, or disclose confidential information. Buffer overflow attacks are said to have arisen because the C programming language supplied the framework, and poor programming practices supplied the vulnerability.