Understanding CVE-2023-28322: A Close Look at Low Severity Information Disclosure in Curl

In the digital age, where data security is paramount, even a low-severity vulnerability can prompt a thoughtful approach to cybersecurity practices. A recent discovery, identified as CVE-2023-28322, sheds light on an information disclosure issue in the widely used data transfer tool, Curl. This vulnerability, with a severity rating of 3.7, might not set off alarms, but understanding its implications is crucial for developers and software administrators who prioritize data integrity.

The Curl Software: Brief Overview

Curl is an essential tool for data transfer supported on a multitude of platforms. It is designed to work without user interaction, making it a reliable utility for automating the transfer of data via protocols such as HTTP, FTP, SMTP, and more. Its flexibility and effectiveness in dealing with diverse data formats and communication protocols make it a preferred choice for system administrators, providing a backbone for seamless data exchange across various systems.

Details of CVE-2023-28322

The vulnerability in question arises when Curl versions prior to v8.1.0 engage in HTTP(S) transfers. Specifically, if a Curl handle that was previously employed to perform a PUT request — utilizing the CURLOPT_READFUNCTION callback — is reused for a POST request where CURLOPT_POSTFIELDS is set, the data handling mechanisms may conflict. This flaw can lead to unintended data disclosures; the application might end up transferring incorrect data or managing memory ineffectively, which could subsequently affect application performance or data integrity.

This vulnerability is particularly notable because it hinges on the reuse of Curl handles, a common practice designed to optimize handle management and resource consumption in applications. The unexpected interaction between handle states (switching from PUT to POST) unveils a scenario that can easily be overlooked during regular security audits.

Implications for Users and Administrators

Although classified as low severity, CVE-2023-28322 merits attention due to the ubiquitous use of Curl in countless applications and systems. Developers, IT administrators, and any parties utilizing Curl should assess their use of Curl handles and the flow of data within their applications. Ensuring that Curl handles are appropriately managed and reset between requests can mitigate the risks associated with this vulnerability.

Patch and Mitigation Strategies

The best course of action to address CVE-2023-28322 involves updating Curl to version 8.1.0 or later, where this flaw has been resolved. Additionally, reviewing existing code for handle reuse practices and considering alternative strategies for handling data requests can provide an extra layer of security.

For Linux servers and applications that depend heavily on Curl for operational functionality, staying ahead of vulnerabilities like CVE-2023-28322 is crucial. Utilizing platforms such as LinuxPatch, which specialize in streamlined and efficient patch management, can significantly ease the burden of maintaining software security and compliance.


Even with a low severity score, every vulnerability presents an opportunity to tighten security protocols and enhance system robustness. CVE-2023-28322 serves as a reminder for continuous vigilance and underscores the need for consistent software updates and informed coding practices. By addressing these vulnerabilities head-on, organizations can safeguard their data and systems against potential threats that exploit even the most subtle flaws.

Protect your Linux servers today by ensuring you have the latest patches and security updates. Visit LinuxPatch to discover how efficient patch management can fortify your systems against vulnerabilities like CVE-2023-28322.