Feeds

Microsoft to issue emergency patches Tuesday

Relief for what ails IE, Visual Studio

Seven Steps to Software Security

Microsoft plans to issue two emergency patches next week that fix vulnerabilities in the Internet Explorer browser and Visual Studio developer suite that allow attackers to remotely execute malware.

The patches, which will be delivered on Tuesday, will be only the third time Microsoft has issued an out-of-band security patch in the past 25 months. That suggests the updates are serious enough to warrant the extra fuss. Typically, the company issues patches on the second Tuesday of each month to allow administrators time to plan for and test the updates.

In an advanced notice published late Friday, the company gave few details about the vulnerability. The patch for IE is rated "critical," the highest severity designation on Microsoft's four-notch scale. The update for Visual Studio is rated one notch lower, at "important." Both fixes will require machines to be rebooted.

"While this release is to address a single, overall issue, in order to provide the broadest protections possible to customers, we’ll be releasing two separate security bulletins," a Microsoft spokesman said in a statement.

It went on to say: "While we can’t go into specifics about the issue prior to release, we can say that the Visual Studio bulletin will address an issue that can affect certain types of applications. The Internet Explorer bulletin will provide defense-in-depth changes to Internet Explorer to help provide additional protections for the issues addressed by the Visual Studio bulletin. The Internet Explorer update will also address vulnerabilities rated as Critical that are unrelated to the Visual Studio bulletin that were privately and responsibly reported."

Earlier this week, Brian Krebs's Security Fix blog reported Microsoft intended to issue an out-of-band patch that was related to a vulnerability designated MS09-032, which Microsoft fixed 10 days ago. The report said an additional patch may be needed because the first one repaired only a subset of the vulnerable code.

Attacks targeting MS09-032 have been underway since early this month. People who have installed the patch for that vulnerability remain protected from those attacks, Microsoft's statement said.

The underlying bug was discovered by researchers Ryan Smith and Alex Wheeler and reported to Microsoft in April or May of 2008. <strke>On the same day The day after Microsoft plans to issue the emergency fix, Smith and two other researchers plan to deliver this talk at the Black Hat security conference detailing "a nuanced and precarious trust layer between" components in technologies including javascript, .NET, and browser plugins."

A preview of the talk is available here. ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
NEW, SINISTER web tracking tech fingerprints your computer by making it draw
Have you been on YouPorn lately, perhaps? White House website?
BMW's ConnectedDrive falls over, bosses blame upgrade snafu
Traffic flows up 20% as motorway middle lanes miraculously unclog
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Attackers raid SWISS BANKS with DNS and malware bombs
'Retefe' trojan uses clever spin on old attacks to grant total control of bank accounts
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.