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Security Advisories: GSA_kwCzR0hTQS0zNjY5LTcyeDktcjlwM84AA9ct

Potential memory exhaustion attack due to sparse slice deserialization


Running schema.Decoder.Decode() on a struct that has a field of type []struct{...} opens it up to malicious attacks regarding memory allocations, taking advantage of the sparse slice functionality. For instance, in the Proof of Concept written below, someone can specify to set a field of the billionth element and it will allocate all other elements before it in the slice.

In the local environment environment for my project, I was able to call an endpoint like /innocent_endpoint?arr.10000000.X=1 and freeze my system from the memory allocation while parsing r.Form. I think this line is responsible for allocating the slice, although I haven't tested to make sure, so it's just an educated guess.

Proof of Concept

The following proof of concept works on both v1.2.0 and v1.2.1. I have not tested earlier versions.

package main

import (


func main() {
	dec := schema.NewDecoder()
	var result struct {
		Arr []struct{ Val int }
	if err := dec.Decode(&result, map[string][]string{"arr.1000000000.Val": {"1"}}); err != nil {
	fmt.Printf("%#+v\n", result)


Any use of schema.Decoder.Decode() on a struct with arrays of other structs could be vulnerable to this memory exhaustion vulnerability. There seems to be no possible solution that a developer using this library can do to disable this behaviour without fixing it in this project, so all uses of Decode that fall under this umbrella are affected. A fix that doesn't require a major change may also be harder to find, since it could break compatibility with some other intended use-cases.

Source: GitHub Advisory Database
Origin: Unspecified
Severity: High
Classification: General
Published: 16 days ago
Updated: 12 days ago

CVSS Score: 7.5
CVSS vector: CVSS:3.1/AV:N/AC:L/PR:N/UI:N/S:U/C:N/I:N/A:H

Identifiers: GHSA-3669-72x9-r9p3, CVE-2024-37298
References: Repository:
Blast Radius: 27.3

Affected Packages
Dependent packages: 2,226
Dependent repositories: 4,412
Affected Version Ranges: < 1.4.1
Fixed in: 1.4.1
All affected versions: 1.0.0, 1.0.1, 1.0.2, 1.1.0, 1.2.0, 1.2.1
All unaffected versions: