[OS X TeX] Are Poisoned PDFs a concern with TeXShop or Skim?

Alan T Litchfield alan at alphabyte.co.nz
Mon May 24 22:30:44 CEST 2010

On 25/05/2010, at 6:22 AM, Ramón Figueroa-Centeno wrote:

> Aloha,
> I just read in PCWorld and article titled "Poisoned PDFs? Here's Your
> Antidote" <http://bit.ly/dxhmBT>.
> Scary stuff :(
> So I was wondering if this is a concern with TeXShop or Skim? I am  
> assuming
> that the PDFs generated with pdfTeX are safe, right?

The threat is not new. Symantec regularly release activity reports and  
from time to time a reporter looking for a story will pick one up and  
do some work.

Any reputable antivirus/anti-malware/etc. application should pick up  
at least some of these, but of course one must always be cautious  
about the stray pdf you find in the street. Most pdf exploits are  
pretty well documented.

Anyway, click on the link http://www4.symantec.com/Vrt/wl?tu_id=SUKX1271711282503126202

Go to pp 22-23, 42, 44, 45. It is all explained there.

Provided these applications do not run javascript inclusions without  
user authorisation then you should be ok.


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