Feeds

Security flap over support ActiveX controls bug

Help!

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Flaws in an ActiveX component incorporated in many technical support support packages create a risk of hacking attacks, security watchers warn.

SupportSoft's ActiveX controls are subject to multiple buffer overflow vulnerabilities, which create a means for hackers to inject malware onto vulnerable systems. The controls are used by internet service providers (ISPs) and PC manufacturers for remote assistance and other technical support functions, creating a large pool of potentially vulnerable users. Exploitation would involve tricking users into visiting maliciously constructed websites featuring ActiveX controls that take advantage of SupportSoft's vulnerabilities.

Organisations using the technology include IBM, Telefonica, BT, Symantec and Bank of America, among others. Symantec users should apply an update as explained here. SupportSoft has also published an advisory. However since most third-party software packages don't exactly advertise their use of SupportSoft components, most ordinary users won't be aware whether they are exposed to the problem or not.

Because of this potential dilemma security clearing house US CERT advises users to disable SupportSoft ActiveX controls in Internet Explorer as a precautionary workaround (as explained here). More simply users might want to disable ActiveX controls in the Internet Zone but this might render some websites unusable. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Rupert Murdoch says Google is worse than the NSA
Mr Burns vs. The Chocolate Factory, round three!
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Germany 'accidentally' snooped on John Kerry and Hillary Clinton
Dragnet surveillance picks up EVERYTHING, USA, m'kay?
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
Think crypto hides you from spooks on Facebook? THINK AGAIN
Traffic fingerprints reveal all, say boffins
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
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.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
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.