Microsoft has posted a security advisory about a new security vulnerability that is affecting older Internet Explorer version. More precisely, it affects Internet Explorer 6 and Internet Explorer 7.
Microsoft's latest web browser Internet Explorer 8 is not affected by the vulnerability according to the security advisory.
The impact of the vulnerability is a remote code execution that can be triggered by an invalid pointer reference that can be the cause for the remote code execution.
Microsoft is aware of targeted attacks. It is therefore recommended to update Internet Explorer to the latest version or ensure that Protected Mode in Internet Explorer is enabled.
Possible attack vectors are manipulated websites that are used to exploit the security vulnerability either directly or by third party code that is being displayed on the website or by attacking the email clients Microsoft Outlook or Windows Mail with HTML emails that exploit the vulnerability.
Interested users can visit the security advisory issued by Microsoft to get additional information about the security vulnerability.
Another possibility to protect the computer from the vulnerability would be to switch at least temporary to another Internet browser although this might not always be possible.
Update: Microsoft released a security bulletin, Microsoft Security Bulletin MS10-018, that addresses the issue and fixes it.
This security update resolves nine privately reported vulnerabilities and one publicly disclosed vulnerability in Internet Explorer. The most severe vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user views a specially crafted Web page using Internet Explorer. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.
The security update addresses these vulnerabilities by modifying the way that Internet Explorer verifies the origin of scripts and handles objects in memory, content using encoding strings, and long URL.
The update fixes issues in all versions of Internet Explorer including Internet Explorer 8.Advertisement
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