[gnutls-help] [gnutls-devel] DER decoding errors due to time format

Nikos Mavrogiannopoulos n.mavrogiannopoulos at gmail.com
Fri Jun 2 11:56:45 CEST 2017

On Wed, May 31, 2017 at 9:37 AM, Tim Rühsen <tim.ruehsen at gmx.de> wrote:

>>> And today someone filed this in Debian:
>>> https://bugs.debian.org/862335
>> I have a patch set which will tolerate incorrectly formatted dates to
>> work around these issues in openssl:
>> https://gitlab.com/gnutls/gnutls/merge_requests/400
>> I am still not sure that tolerating invalid formatted data is a good
>> thing, however, in case of infrastructure already deployed based on
>> openssl tools, there is not much an administrator/user can do. What
>> I'm thinking to do is set a cut-off date after which the original
>> strict behavior will be re-instated, though I cannot see how would
>> that help eliminating that issue.
> OpenSSL just 'allows' an invalid format, it's not really buggy (at least
> not 1.1.1-dev, maybe older versions !?). The question is how many public
> deployments are really affected, e.g. how many of the top 1M sites use
> certs with invalid dates ?

I guess none. My concern are the non-public deployments. E.g., imagine
a custom CA infrastructure used to authenticate mobile applications or
things like that. These may have had a timezone included in the date
which renders the certificate invalid, meaning no gnutls application
could be used with that PKI.


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