Closed Bug 662996 Opened 9 years ago Closed 8 years ago

OCSP requests leak cookies


(Core :: Security: PSM, defect, major)

Not set





(Reporter: st3fan, Unassigned)



(Keywords: privacy)


(1 file)

During testing of some OCSP server side code I saw Firefox do the following OCSP request:

User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10.7; rv:2.0.1) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/4.0.1
Accept: text/html,application/xhtml+xml,application/xml;q=0.9,*/*;q=0.8
Accept-Language: en-us,en;q=0.5
Accept-Encoding: gzip, deflate
Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.7
Keep-Alive: 115
Connection: keep-alive
Content-Length: 115
Content-Type: application/ocsp-request
Cookie: v1st=YX32X24T8E9X; __utma=136232671.83772523.1; __utmz=1369032.23772523.1.1.utmcsr=(direct)|utmccn=(direct)|utmcmd=(none)

What worries me is that the Cookie header is included.

I think this is a security problem because because it is identifying me to the owner of the OCSP server.

Not only does the owner of the OCSP server now know what site I am visiting (through the SSL certificate hash in the OCSP request body), it can also identify me.

This can be further exploited by OCSP server owners by somehow getting cookies setup for the domain. For example by embedding ads. (I know this is a stretch but it is certainly possible)

Since these OCSP requests are basic API requests, I think they should be as minimal as possible, which means leaving out any headers that are not required. In my opinion that should also include the User-Agent header.
Component: Security → Security: PSM
QA Contact: toolkit → psm
OS: Mac OS X → All
Hardware: x86 → All
Attached patch wild guessSplinter Review
I don't know that this is the right fix, but it seems to be the only place where NSS code creates a necko channel (via trySendAndReceiveFcn, which is certainly used by PKIX OCSP code). Also it's untested :)
Attachment #538159 - Flags: feedback?(kaie)
Stefan, do you know what the STR are? I was not able to reproduce this, even after visiting several URLs on and then going to

Gavin, thanks for the patch. I will take a look at it once I am able to reproduce the bug.
Keywords: privacy

Go to
Browse around for example change to another language
Validate that a cookie has been set
Quit Firefox (to force OCSP since I don't think it is fully cached?)
Go to

Go to
Validate that a cookie has been set (should be for
Quit Firefox (to force OCSP since I don't think it is fully cached?)
Go to (my domain that has a godaddy cert)

It might be easier to enable ocsp.require but you don't have to.
I did this:
- enable strict ocsp
- start debug build with NSPR_LOG_MODULES="cookie:5"
- go to verisign (gets a cookie)
- quit firefox
- start firefox
- go to
- look at trace output, search for ocsp,
  a cookie was sent for an ocsp request

I agree we should not do this.

I applied the patch, and I repeated the above.
I no longer see a cookie being sent to the ocsp server.
Comment on attachment 538159 [details] [diff] [review]
wild guess


Gavin, thanks for this patch. Do you want to take the bug and drive it in, or should we?
Attachment #538159 - Flags: superreview+
Attachment #538159 - Flags: review?(bsmith)
Attachment #538159 - Flags: feedback?(kaie)
Attachment #538159 - Flags: feedback?(bsmith)
Attachment #538159 - Flags: feedback+
I can take the bug, though I'm not really familiar with the test situation for this code. Are there any automated OCSP tests that a test for this bug could easily be added to?
Comment on attachment 538159 [details] [diff] [review]
wild guess


Unfortunately, we don't have any automated tests for OCSP in Firefox--partly because we don't have any way of generating OCSP responses. Kai's manual test procedure will have to do for now.
Attachment #538159 - Flags: review?(bsmith) → review+
Keywords: checkin-needed
Please do NOT add the checkin-needed keyword in the future for patches without metadata.

I took a guess as to what that should be in this case, but next time I'll just remove the keyword...
Assignee: nobody →
Ok, thanks a lot Boris!
Sorry - I intended to land this myself, I just forgot about it.
Closed: 9 years ago
Resolution: --- → FIXED
Target Milestone: --- → mozilla8
This was backed out in bug 703024.
Assignee: → nobody
Resolution: FIXED → ---
Target Milestone: mozilla8 → ---
Duplicate of this bug: 786229
Can we apply Gavin's patch again now that the dependencies for this bug have been resolved?

I still think this is a major privacy concern: CAs can effectively use this to track someone.
Yeah, looks like bug 627616 means that the old patch should work as-is (it won't affect proxy authentication).
This looks suspicious:

     1.1 --- a/security/manager/ssl/src/nsNSSCallbacks.cpp
     1.2 +++ b/security/manager/ssl/src/nsNSSCallbacks.cpp
     1.3 @@ -72,16 +72,18 @@ nsHTTPDownloadEvent::Run()
     1.4    nsCOMPtr<nsIChannel> chan;
     1.5    ios->NewChannel(mRequestSession->mURL, nullptr, nullptr, getter_AddRefs(chan));
     1.6    NS_ENSURE_STATE(chan);
     1.8    // Disabled because it breaks authentication with a proxy, when such proxy
     1.9    // had been setup, and brings blue UI for EV certs.
    1.10    // chan->SetLoadFlags(nsIRequest::LOAD_ANONYMOUS);
    1.12 +  chan->SetLoadFlags(nsIRequest::LOAD_ANONYMOUS);

The comment seems to be outdated by the fix in bug 627616 and thus should be removed, shouldn't it?
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