Feeds

MS launches Office security blitz

Full House with five fixes

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Website security in corporate America

Microsoft issued five security alerts yesterday. Thankfully, only one, involving a buffer overflow vulnerability with the software giant's applications development suite, is serious enough to merit the dreaded "critical" designation.

As explained in an advisory here, a flaw with Visual Basic for Applications SDK (versions 5.0 to 6.3) might permit an attacker to run code of their fancy on targeted systems if they trick an user into opening an infected document. The package has been used to develop Microsoft applications (such as various versions of Access, Word, Excel, PowerPoint) so they also need patching.

And its not just Office apps, enterprise apps such as Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains 7.5 and Microsoft Business Solutions eEnterprise (versions 6.0 and 7.0) need a patching too. In all 29 apps need fixing. Microsoft has issued a series of patches designed to address the problem, as explained in greater depth here.

One step down the Redmond scale from critical, Microsoft issued a pair of "important" notices overnight. The first involves a buffer overflow vulnerability involving Microsoft's implementation of a WordPerfect document converter in Microsoft Office and other software applications. A separate "important" vulnerability in Microsoft Word might permit macros to run automatically, to potentially devastating effect.

If a cracker were able to succeed in getting a user to open a poisoned document, Microsoft warns that the flaw might allow a malicious macro embedded in the document to be "executed automatically, regardless of the level at which macro security is set".

"The malicious macro could take the same actions that the user had permissions to carry out, such as adding, changing or deleting data or files, communicating with a web site or formatting the hard drive," it adds in an advisory.

Microsoft has issued patches for both these "important" flaws along with fixes for two less serious vulnerabilities.

These concern a "moderate" risk vuln involving a buffer overflow flaw involving Microsoft Access Snapshot Viewer and a "low" risk flaw in Microsoft's Network basic input/output system (NetBIOS) API that might allow snoops to see snippets of random information in your computer's memory over a local network. ®

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

More from The Register

next story
'Kim Kardashian snaps naked selfies with a BLACKBERRY'. *Twitterati gasps*
More alleged private, nude celeb pics appear online
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign
Claim of tapped undersea cable refuted by Kiwi PM as Kim claims extradition plot
Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach
Miscreants probably got in, you guys know the drill by now
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
BitTorrent's peer-to-peer chat app Bleep goes live as public alpha
A good day for privacy as invisble.im also reveals its approach to untraceable chats
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.