cPanel – Activate Remote Name Servers Arbitrary Command Execution (R911-0136)

Type: Arbitrary Command Execution
Location: Remote
Impact: High
Product: cPanel
Vulnerable Version: All versions prior to the fixed builds below.
Fixed Version:, &
CVE: -
R911: 0136
Date: 2014-03-31
By: Rack911

Product Description:

cPanel is an easy-to-use control panel that gives web hosts and the website owners they serve, the ability to quickly and easily manage their servers and websites. Web Host Manager (WHM) is a part of the cPanel software, often used by resellers and system administrators.

Vulnerability Description:

There is an arbitrary command execution within the activate_remote_nameservers.cgi feature when using the SoftLayer module and possibly also the VPS.NET module. The end result is that a reseller would be able to run any command as root which would ultimately lead to a privilege escalation. This exploit also includes an input validation failure.


We have deemed this vulnerability to be rated as HIGH due to the fact that root access can be obtained.

Vulnerable Version:

This vulnerability was tested against cPanel 11.40.0 #19 and is believed to exist in all versions prior to the fixed builds below.

Fixed Version:

This vulnerability was patched in cPanel, &

Vendor Contact Timeline:

2014-01-26: Vendor contacted via email.
2014-02-03: Vendor confirms vulnerability.
2014-03-24: Vendor issues updates to all builds.
2014-03-31: Rack911 issues security advisory.