Platform Usage / IPA Plist Files

iOSMobile App


IPA Plist files are configuration files used in Apple's iOS and Mobile App platforms. These files are used to control how the application behaves and what features are available. Unfortunately, these files can be manipulated by malicious actors to enable features that can be used to gain access to sensitive data. According to the Common Weakness Enumeration (CWE) directory, this vulnerability can be classified as CWE-933 Improper Restriction of Operations within the System. Additionally, the OWASP Testing Guide mentions that the manipulation of IPA Plist files can lead to unauthorized access and control of applications.


The risk associated with this vulnerability is that a malicious actor can gain access to sensitive data or control of an application. If the application is connected to a larger system, the malicious actor can cause significant disruption and damage. The risk can be further magnified if the malicious actor is able to gain access to the application's source code, as it can be used to discover additional weaknesses or create malicious programs.


The best solution to this vulnerability is to ensure that the IPA Plist files are kept secure by implementing appropriate security measures such as authentication and encryption. Additionally, the application should be regularly tested for vulnerabilities to ensure that any malicious actors are not able to gain unauthorized access.


An example of this vulnerability can be seen in CVE-2020-3837, which involves the manipulation of an IPA Plist file. In this case, a malicious actor was able to manipulate the file in order to gain access to the application's source code.

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