CWE-1419 Detail


Incorrect Initialization of Resource
2023-10-26 00:00 +00:00

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Incorrect Initialization of Resource

The product attempts to initialize a resource but does not correctly do so, which might leave the resource in an unexpected, incorrect, or insecure state when it is accessed.

Extended Description

This can have security implications when the associated resource is expected to have certain properties or values. Examples include a variable that determines whether a user has been authenticated or not, or a register or fuse value that determines the security state of the product.

For software, this weakness can frequently occur when implicit initialization is used, meaning the resource is not explicitly set to a specific value. For example, in C, memory is not necessarily cleared when it is allocated on the stack, and many scripting languages use a default empty, null value, or zero value when a variable is not explicitly initialized.

For hardware, this weakness frequently appears with reset values and fuses. After a product reset, hardware may initialize registers incorrectly. During different phases of a product lifecycle, fuses may be set to incorrect values. Even if fuses are set to correct values, the lines to the fuse could be broken or there might be hardware on the fuse line that alters the fuse value to be incorrect.


Modes Of Introduction

System Configuration

Applicable Platforms


Class: Not Language-Specific (Undetermined)

Operating Systems

Class: Not OS-Specific (Undetermined)


Class: Not Architecture-Specific (Undetermined)


Class: Not Technology-Specific (Undetermined)

Common Consequences

Scope Impact Likelihood
ConfidentialityRead Memory, Read Application Data, Unexpected StateUnknown
Gain Privileges or Assume Identity
OtherVaries by Context

Note: The technical impact can vary widely based on how the resource is used in the product, and whether its contents affect security decisions.

Observed Examples

Reference Description
CVE-2020-27211Chain: microcontroller system-on-chip uses a register value stored in flash to set product protection state on the memory bus and does not contain protection against fault injection (CWE-1319) which leads to an incorrect initialization of the memory bus (CWE-1419) causing the product to be in an unprotected state.
CVE-2023-25815chain: a change in an underlying package causes the gettext function to use implicit initialization with a hard-coded path (CWE-1419) under the user-writable C:\ drive, introducing an untrusted search path element (CWE-427) that enables spoofing of messages.
CVE-2022-43468WordPress module sets internal variables based on external inputs, allowing false reporting of the number of views
CVE-2022-36349insecure default variable initialization in BIOS firmware for a hardware board allows DoS
CVE-2015-7763distributed filesystem only initializes part of the variable-length padding for a packet, allowing attackers to read sensitive information from previously-sent packets in the same memory location

Potential Mitigations

Phases : Implementation
Choose the safest-possible initialization for security-related resources.
Phases : Implementation
Ensure that each resource (whether variable, memory buffer, register, etc.) is fully initialized.
Phases : Implementation
Pay close attention to complex conditionals or reset sources that affect initialization, since some paths might not perform the initialization.
Phases : Architecture and Design
Ensure that the design and architecture clearly identify what the initialization should be, and that the initialization does not have security implications.

Vulnerability Mapping Notes

Rationale : This CWE entry is a Class and might have Base-level children that would be more appropriate
Comments : Examine children of this entry to see if there is a better fit


Name Organization Date Date Release Version
CWE Content Team MITRE 2023-10-11 +00:00 2023-10-26 +00:00 4.13
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