Feeds

MS plugs weak XP firewall

Critical update

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Microsoft this week quietly fixed a security weakness in the configuration of the built-in firewall component of Windows XP.

The firewall - turned on by default by XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) - can leave files open across the whole net if users choose to enable file and printer sharing, it transpires. Such access should be restricted across a local network but Microsoft has implemented the feature in such a way that, for users of some dial-up ISPs, a local sub-net becomes the whole internet. Microsoft first informed users of this back in September but it has taken three months for it to release a fix.

Configuration changes released through Windows Update this week narrow the scope of what is defined as a local network. This update was issued at the same time as Microsoft's monthly patch roundup earlier this week but treated separately by Redmond (insecure configuration settings and security bugs been different beasties, at least according to Microsoft). Microsoft defines the update (more info here) as "critical".

In other Windows security news, security firm Secunia warns of a flaw in IE that can be used to conduct cross-site scripting attacks. The firm has produced a test to illustrating how the unpatched vuln. might be harnessed in phishing attacks. Even fully patched systems running Windows XP SP2 and up to date versions of IE are potentially vulnerable. Secunia advises users concerned about the problem to deactivate ActiveX or to use an alternative browser. ®

Related stories

Five important fixes in MS December patch batch
IE in fresh security drama
Watch out there's an IE bug about
CERT recommends anything but IE
MS plugs IE phishing bug (here's one they fixed earlier)

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Chinese hackers spied on investigators of Flight MH370 - report
Classified data on flight's disappearance pinched
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Germany 'accidentally' snooped on John Kerry and Hillary Clinton
Dragnet surveillance picks up EVERYTHING, USA, m'kay?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.