Feeds

Unofficial IE patch saves humanity

Third party, fire and theft

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Security researchers have released a patch designed to protect users against an outstanding Internet Explorer vulnerability in the absence of available security updates from Microsoft.

A new ad-hoc group of security pros, called the Zeroday Emergency Response Team (ZERT), has released an unofficial fix designed to address the Vector Markup Language (VML) component vulnerability in IE, the most serious of two unpatched IE vulnerabilities. It plans to release other security bug fixes in future.

Hackers are taking advantage of this VML security flaw in IE to infect users visiting pornographic websites. Opening maliciously constructed emails in Outlook is also a potential risk, especially as attacks targeting the vulnerability are growing in prevalence since their first appearance last week.

The security bug is unrelated to a (still unpatched) flaw in Microsoft's Direct Animation Path (daxctle.ocx) ActiveX control discovered earlier this month.

ZERT said users should replace its fix with Microsoft's patch once this becomes available. "It is always a good idea to wait for a vendor-supplied patch and apply it as soon as possible, but there will be times when an ad-hoc group such as ours can release a working patch before a vendor can release their solution," it said.

Separately, security management firm PatchLink released a more limited workaround designed to help its customers (and only its customers) protect their networks from the VML exploit.

PatchLink estimates the number of vulnerabilities in various applications released this year will reach 6,700, some of which will become the subject of exploit before vendors get around to releasing patches.

Because of the growing issue of unpatched (so called zero-day) exploits, IT administrators can expect to see more third party patches such as the VML patch released by the ZERT group. PatchLink advises to check the provenance of patches and carry out testing before applying fixes in case they cause more problems than they solve in a user's environment. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Ice cream headache as black hat hacks sack Dairy Queen
I scream, you scream, we all scream 'DATA BREACH'!
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
JLaw, Kate Upton exposed in celeb nude pics hack
100 women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
Three quarters of South Korea popped in online gaming raids
Records used to plunder game items, sold off to low lifes
Oz fed police in PDF redaction SNAFU
Give us your metadata, we'll publish your data
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
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.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.