Feeds

MS releases dirty dozen

Nine critical fixes star in August Patch Tuesday update

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Sysadmins can look forward to booking some overtime this month after Microsoft release 12 patches as part of its regular Patch Tuesday update cycle. Redmond describes nine of 12 patches as critical.

Three of these patches cover browser-related vulnerabilities, three involve Windows security bugs, while another is designed to address an Office vulnerability in PowerPoint.

The two other critical flaws involve a Windows Server service buffer overflow and a Microsoft Management Console cross-site scripting flaw.

Security clearing house US CERT warns that the Server service flaw (MS06-040) is being actively targeted by hackers, making the flaw particular serious. Experts warn the flaw creates a vector for computer worms, such as the infamous Blaster.

Mike Murray, director of vulnerability at nCircle, comments: "The server service vulnerability is particularly worrisome because it is exploitable by an anonymous user, so anyone who can connect to the vulnerable computer over the network can potentially exploit it and create widespread havoc. If an exploit is easy to write, we could expect to see something within 48-72 hours. This vulnerability is in the RPC area, as was the M Blaster worm, and unfortunately there is a lot of existing knowledge and pre-written code available for exploit writers."

Security firms reckon Microsoft is patching old wounds from some of its other fixes. "Four out of the nine critical patches actually supersede previously published patches, and in total around two dozen CVE (common vulnerabilities and exposures) vulnerabilities are fixed by new patch updates this Patch Tuesday," said Alan Bentley, managing director of net security firm PatchLink.

"Because security vulnerabilities are usually errors unintentionally put in code by programmers, the chances of finding a new vulnerability in an adjacent area of code or functionality is much more likely than your chances of identifying a brand new and unique vulnerability. This issue can be seen clearly in the number of patches that 'supersede' one another - where the same buggy code has been fixed again and again. Software bugs are a lot like roaches, if you find one, there are likely many more lurking somewhere close by."

An overview of the 12 patches can be found in Microsoft's advisory here. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
'Regin': The 'New Stuxnet' spook-grade SOFTWARE WEAPON described
'A degree of technical competence rarely seen'
You really need to do some tech support for Aunty Agnes
Free anti-virus software, expires, stops updating and p0wns the world
Regin: The super-spyware the security industry has been silent about
NSA fingered as likely source of complex malware family
You stupid BRICK! PCs running Avast AV can't handle Windows fixes
Fix issued, fingers pointed, forums in flames
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Patch NOW! Microsoft slings emergency bug fix at Windows admins
Vulnerability promotes lusers to domain overlords ... oops
HACKERS can DELETE SURVEILLANCE DVRS remotely – report
Hikvision devices wide open to hacking, claim securobods
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
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?