Feeds

Microsoft rushes out emergency fix for critical Windows bug

Get yours now

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Microsoft on Monday rushed out an emergency patch for a critical vulnerability that criminals are exploiting to install malware on all supported versions of the Windows operating system.

As promised Friday, Microsoft released the update outside of its normal patching schedule because the vulnerability is being actively targeted. When the flaw first came to public attention three weeks ago, it was being used to attack SCADA — supervisory control and data acquisition — systems that control sensitive equipment at power plants, gas refineries, and other other critical infrastructure.

Since then, it's been used to install general-purpose malware from Zeus and other do-it-yourself crimeware kits used to siphon credit card numbers and other sensitive data from compromised computers. The Windows flaw resides in a shortcut feature that makes it easy to store commonly accessed files and folders on the operating-system desktop.

Users who employed a stopgap FixIt published two weeks ago should roll back their machines using the “disable workaround” feature here. Those who don't follow this advice will find that icons fail to display properly, causing folders and files to appear white without any of the customary graphics.

Users will most likely have to reboot their machines twice — once after uninstalling the workaround, and again after installing the update. Microsoft's out-of-band bulletin is here. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Regin: The super-spyware the security industry has been silent about
NSA fingered as likely source of complex malware family
Why did it take antivirus giants YEARS to drill into super-scary Regin? Symantec responds...
FYI this isn't just going to target Windows, Linux and OS X fans
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Patch NOW! Microsoft slings emergency bug fix at Windows admins
Vulnerability promotes lusers to domain overlords ... oops
HACKERS can DELETE SURVEILLANCE DVRS remotely – report
Hikvision devices wide open to hacking, claim securobods
'Regin': The 'New Stuxnet' spook-grade SOFTWARE WEAPON described
'A degree of technical competence rarely seen'
Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data
Got a supercomputer? Want to simulate a universe? Here you go
prev story

Whitepapers

Driving business with continuous operational intelligence
Introducing an innovative approach offered by ExtraHop for producing continuous operational intelligence.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Protecting against web application threats using SSL
SSL encryption can protect server‐to‐server communications, client devices, cloud resources, and other endpoints in order to help prevent the risk of data loss and losing customer trust.