Project: WASC Threat Classification

Threat Type: Attack

Reference ID: WASC-03


Integer Overflows

An Integer Overflow is the condition that occurs when the result of an arithmetic operation, such as multiplication or addition, exceeds the maximum size of the integer type used to store it. When an integer overflow occurs, the interpreted value will appear to have “wrapped around” the maximum value and started again at the minimum value, similar to a clock that represents 13:00 by pointing at 1:00.


For example, an 8-bit signed integer on most common computer architectures has a maximum value of 127 and a minimum value of -128. If a programmer stores the value 127 in such a variable and adds 1 to it, the result should be 128. However, this value exceeds the maximum for this integer type, so the interpreted value will “wrap around” and become -128.