Feeds

Hotmail pulls Attach-Photo feature over security concerns

Stealth suspension explained

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Microsoft has suspended the "Attach-Photo" feature in Hotmail as a result of security concerns.

Webmail users can still add photos as attachments to Hotmail messages, just not in the same way as before. Microsoft expects to restore the suspended feature by the end of September.

Microsoft spoke about the recent suspension in postings to the Windows Live blog here and help pages here on Thursday.

Redmond explains the feature was suspended after testing unearthed a security glitch involving the interaction of its feature with IE.

Some of you may have noticed that lately, you can no longer add photos directly into the body of a Windows Live Hotmail message the way you used to do. The Windows Live team is constantly reviewing Hotmail to ensure quality service to our customers.

During a recent review, we identified an incompatibility with Internet Explorer that caused a security flaw with photo uploads, and we made the decision to temporarily remove the feature.

The Hotmail team takes security very seriously and we expect to bring back the photo upload feature by the end of September. In the meantime, you can still add pictures as attachments to your Hotmail messages, by clicking Attach, and then selecting the picture you want to include.

Microsoft apologised for any inconvenience resulting from the suspension. The feature was actually pulled around four weeks ago (since 24 July or thereabouts) but Microsoft only went public on Thursday. In the interim many users expressed confusion and frustration in Hotmail forums.

The technology was reportedly pulled because of a dodgy ActiveX control but no further information is available at the time of writing. Reading between the lines, it looks like Microsoft will address the flaw with an IE update during the September edition of Patch Tuesday followed by the restoration of the feature a few weeks later. It almost goes without saying but this timetable is subject to change. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
Ello? ello? ello?: Facebook challenger in DDoS KNOCKOUT
Gets back up again after half an hour though
SHELLSHOCKED: Fortune 1000 outfits Bash out batches of patches
CloudPassage points to 'pervasive' threat of Bash bug
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.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.