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MS fuels up five critical Windows fixes

Black Tuesday likely to skip relief for IIS zero-day

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Microsoft plans to release five critical update bulletins next Tuesday, all critical, in the September edition of its regular Patch Tuesday update cycle.

As usual, not much information on the contents of the planned patches is available. All supported versions of Windows (2000, XP, Vista, Server 2003 and Server 2008) will need updating to defend against various, as yet unspecified, critical security risks.

The list of affected software leaves out mention of Microsoft's IIS Web Server software, which is currently the target of exploits capitalising on a zero-day vulnerability. More specifically, the flaw involves problems in the Microsoft FTP services component bundled with IIS 5.0, IIS 5.1, IIS 6.0 or IIS 7.0. In most cases, the bug creates a means to crash a vulnerable webserver, and only in cases where FTP is enabled. Remote code injection only becomes a risk for shops running IIS 5.0 on Windows 2000.

The lack of mention of IIS in Microsoft's pre-alert implies a set of patches for Microsoft's web server software software will have to wait until at least October.

Alongside the critical patches on its menu, Microsoft also plans to update its Malicious Software Removal Tool, as explained in its pre-release notice here. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

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