MS issues patch for “critical” security flaw

By : |July 30, 2004 0

SEATTLE: Microsoft Corp. has issued a widely expected patch for its Internet Explorer browser, which was known to have a flaw that would let hackers take control of computers and distribute malicious software code.

The security warning, which Microsoft rated as “critical,” was issued as an extra bulletin ahead of the company’s regular monthly security bulletin because of the serious risk to computers, the world’s largest software maker.

Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft launched a campaign in early 2002 to boost the security and reliability of its software, and is due to release a major update to Windows XP next month aimed at improving the security of the company’s flagship operating system.

Friday’s patch will be included in the update for Windows, called Service Pack 2, and will fix three previously known flaws that existed in Internet Explorer.

Hackers, reportedly from Russia, exploited the flaw last month when computers running Internet Explorer viewed pages on a server designed to exploit the flaw and steal information.

Craig Schmugar, a virus research manager at McAfee Inc., recommended that users download the patch and also avoid clicking on any links in spam e-mail, which could direct users to Web pages that exploit the flaw.

“Those users are going to be at a greater risk,” Schmugar said

Microsoft also urged customers to download the patch at

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