Feeds

New attacks on IE7 go wild

Info-stealing software remotely installed

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Cybercriminals have begun attacking a critical hole that Microsoft patched in its Internet Explorer 7 browser last week, corroborating the company's warning that the vulnerability would be easy to exploit.

The exploit code is spread through a booby trapped Word document that ultimately installs information-stealing malware on unpatched machines, according to researchers. The vulnerability is one of two IE flaws Microsoft patched last week. The company warned at the time that "consistent exploit code" for the remote execution flaws was likely.

The attack is fairly primitive at the moment, because it involves the spamming of Word documents. Security experts expect that to change.

"There is absolutely nothing preventing attackers from using the exploit in a drive-by attack (and we can, unfortunately, expect that this will happen very soon)," Bojan Zdrnja, a handler at the Sans Internet Storm Center wrote here. He went on to say the exploit code was the result of reverse engineering Microsoft's patch.

The exploit code does have its innovations, however. It funnels pilfered data to a website in China through an encrypted channel, for instance. It also uses heavily obfuscated shell code and garbage collection, presumably to cover tracks.

The attack exploits MS09-002, a remote execution flaw that is the result of improper handling of errors when attempting to access deleted objects. Anti-virus provider Trend Micro has more about the attacks here. ®

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

More from The Register

next story
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
China hacked US Army transport orgs TWENTY TIMES in ONE YEAR
FBI et al knew of nine hacks - but didn't tell TRANSCOM
Microsoft to patch ASP.NET mess even if you don't
We know what's good for you, because we made the mess says Redmond
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.