Missing Signer Check

In Solana, each public key has an associated private key that can be used to generate signatures. A transaction lists each account public key whose private key was used to generate a signature for the transaction. These signatures are verified using the inputted public keys prior to transaction execution.

In case certain permissions are required to perform a sensitive function of the contract, a missing signer check becomes an issue. Without this check, an attacker would be able to call the respective access controlled functions permissionlessly.

Exploit Scenario

The following contract sets an escrow account's state to Complete. Unfortunately, the contract does not check whether the State account's authority has signed the transaction. Therefore, a malicious actor can set the state to Complete, without needing access to the authority’s private key.

Example Contract

fn main() {
fn complete_escrow(_program_id: &Pubkey, accounts: &[AccountInfo], _instruction_data: &[u8]) -> ProgramResult {
    let account_info_iter = &mut accounts.iter();
    let state_info = next_account_info(account_info_iter)?;
    let authority = next_account_info(account_info_iter)?;

    let mut state = State::deserialize(&mut &**state_info.data.borrow())?;

    if state.authority != *authority.key {
        return Err(ProgramError::IncorrectAuthority);

    state.escrow_state = EscrowState::Complete;
    state.serialize(&mut &mut **state_info.data.borrow_mut())?;



Inspired by SPL Lending Program


fn main() {
  	if !EXPECTED_ACCOUNT.is_signer {
    	return Err(ProgramError::MissingRequiredSignature);

For further reading on different forms of account verification in Solana and implementation refer to the Solana Cookbook.