EJB Bad Practices: Use of Class Loader
The product violates the Enterprise JavaBeans (EJB) specification by using the class loader.
The Enterprise JavaBeans specification requires that every bean provider follow a set of programming guidelines designed to ensure that the bean will be portable and behave consistently in any EJB container. In this case, the product violates the following EJB guideline: "The enterprise bean must not attempt to create a class loader; obtain the current class loader; set the context class loader; set security manager; create a new security manager; stop the JVM; or change the input, output, and error streams." The specification justifies this requirement in the following way: "These functions are reserved for the EJB container. Allowing the enterprise bean to use these functions could compromise security and decrease the container's ability to properly manage the runtime environment."
The following examples help to illustrate the nature of this weakness and describe methods or techniques which can be used to mitigate the risk.
Note that the examples here are by no means exhaustive and any given weakness may have many subtle varieties, each of which may require different detection methods or runtime controls.
The following Java example is a simple stateless Enterprise JavaBean that retrieves the interest rate for the number of points for a mortgage. The interest rates for various points are retrieved from an XML document on the local file system, and the EJB uses the Class Loader for the EJB class to obtain the XML document from the local file system as an input stream.
This use of the Java Class Loader class within any kind of Enterprise JavaBean violates the restriction of the EJB specification against obtaining the current class loader as this could compromise the security of the application using the EJB.
An EJB is also restricted from creating a custom class loader and creating a class and instance of a class from the class loader, as shown in the following example.
Weaknesses in this category are related to poor coding practices.
This category identifies Software Fault Patterns (SFPs) within the Use of an Improper API cluster (SFP3).
This view (slice) covers all the elements in CWE.
This view (slice) lists weaknesses that can be introduced during implementation.
This view (slice) covers issues that are found in Java programs that are not common to all languages.