Feeds

Microsoft issues temp fix for serious Windows security bug

Mitigates script injection threat

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Microsoft has warned customers to apply a temporary security fix to protect against a serious, newly discovered security bug in all supported versions of Windows.

The vulnerability results from the way Windows processes webpages containing MIME-formatted content. Attackers can exploit the weakness to run malicious scripts that steal sensitive information, spoof trusted websites or carry out other actions not authorized by the user. Internet Explorer is the only attack vector for the vulnerability, which resides in the Windows implementation of the MHTML protocol.

Microsoft's security team is still studying the flaw and “will take the appropriate action” once the investigation is complete. In the meantime, the company is advising Windows users to install a temporary “fix it” to prevent attacks. The measure disables some legitimate script execution and ActiveX functionality within MHT documents, but these side effects are mostly limited, members of Microsoft's security team blogged.

The security team is working with website operators, including Google, to explore possible server-side fixes as well. Potential fixes include filtering newline characters out of requests and responses, prepending newline characters onto HTTP responses, and altering the status code of HTTP responses.

Of course, a measure that's easier for most Windows users is to use an alternate browser, since IE is the only known vector.

The vulnerability and proof-of-concept code was recently posted here. Microsoft's advisory said there's no evidence the flaw is being actively exploited in the wild. The company has additional information here. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
NASTY SSL 3.0 vuln to be revealed soon – sources (Update: It's POODLE)
So nasty no one's even whispering until patch is out
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
US government fines Intel's Wind River over crypto exports
New emphasis on encryption as a weapon?
To Russia With Love: Snowden's pole-dancer girlfriend is living with him in Moscow
While the NSA is tapping your PC, he's tapping ... nevermind
Forget passwords, let's use SELFIES, says Obama's cyber tsar
Michael Daniel wants to kill passwords dead
Slap for SnapChat web app in SNAP mishap: '200,000' snaps sapped
This is what happens if you hand your username and password to a 3rd-party
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
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?
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.