Microsoft's latest patch welcomed despite claims of critical risk still being posed

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Microsoft's latest patching has been described as a "super critical patch to install right away".

Microsoft's latest patching has been described as a "super critical patch to install right away".

Eric Schultze, chief technology officer at Shavlik Technologies, claimed that MS09-001 is a crucial patch and that the vulnerability is similar to what prompted the blaster and sasser worms a few years ago.

Schultze said: “We expect to see a worm released for this in the very near future. This flaw enables an attacker to send evil packets to a Microsoft computer and take any action they desire on that computer - no credentials required. The only pre-requisite for this attack to be successful is a connection from the attacker to the victim over the NetBIOS (file and printer sharing) ports (tcp 139 or 445). By default, most computers have these ports turned on.

“While these ports are usually blocked on internet firewalls and personal firewalls, these ports are typically left open in a corporate network.  If a worm is released, and that worm makes it into a corporate network, it will make Swiss cheese of that network relatively quickly.”

Dave Marcus, security research and communications director at McAfee Avert Labs, said: “In a worst case scenario an anonymous attacker who successfully exploited these vulnerabilities could remotely gain complete control over a vulnerable system, without any action on the side of the user. In the past, these types of vulnerabilities have been exploited in worm attacks.”

Christopher Budd, security response communications lead for Microsoft, claimed that the bulletin is rated as ‘critical' for Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 and is rated as ‘moderate' for Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.

However, Lumension Security has claimed that a critical risk is still posed, as all versions of Windows will need patches.

Lumension said: “Microsoft has published a workaround, however, it seems they will not correct the fundamental, architectural vulnerability.”

See original article on scmagazineuk.com
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