Flaw on Tuesday, exploit by Monday

Quick on the draw

Hackers have created an exploit for the latest critical flaw in Microsoft Windows just days after the vulnerability made headlines worldwide.

The flaw involves a vulnerability in Microsoft's Abstract Syntax Notation 1 (ASN.1) library which could be applied to seize control of vulnerable systems.

Windows 2000/XP/2003 are all affected by the vulnerability, which was discovered by security researchers at eEye six months ago.

Last week, security vendors advised there was no known exploit for the vulnerability. That view needs to be revised following the publication of an exploit by 23 year-old white hat hacker Christophe Devine on a full disclosure mailing list over the weekend.

Vulnerable systems could only be crashed - and not taken over - using the attack code. Nonetheless the threat level has gone up an extra notch.

Thomas Kristensen, CTO of security Web site Secunia, said "this exploit only causes a Denial of Service, it is still believed that a system compromise is possible". ®

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