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News

Critical Vulnerabilities Closed Prior To Holiday Season

Symantec : 16 December, 2010  (Technical Article)
Symantec analyses the patch bulletin issued by Microsoft which includes the closure of eight vulnerabilities which are ranked as critical
Last night, Microsoft issued 17 security bulletins which address 40 vulnerabilities. Eight of these vulnerabilities have been rated as critical by Microsoft.

"Microsoft broke several important records today," said Joshua Talbot, security intelligence manager, Symantec Security Response. "Seventeen bulletins are the most ever issued in a single month. Also, Microsoft has now released 106 security bulletins in 2010 - the first time topping the century mark since the Patch Tuesday program began. The next closest was 78 in 2006 and 2008. Finally, by Symantec's count Microsoft far surpassed the number of vulnerabilities patched in a single year with 261. The previous record was 170 set last year."

"The most notable patch this month fixes the fourth zero-day vulnerability used by Stuxnet," Talbot added. "The Task Scheduler issue allows a regular user to schedule a task that will run with elevated privileges, allowing the newly created task full access to the system. This could lead to a complete compromise of the affected computer. Symantec has also seen two additional threats recently begin leveraging this vulnerability."

"Other issues patched this month should get IT's immediate attention as well," Talbot concluded. "The cumulative security update for Internet Explorer covers all currently supported versions. With Internet Explorer 6 and 8 very widely used, this bulletin should be a high priority. Symantec has also observed one of these vulnerabilities actively being exploited in the wild."

Symantec strongly encourages users to patch their systems against all vulnerabilities addressed this month.

Please visit the Symantec Security Response blog for more information and also let me know if you're interested in speaking with a Symantec expert in greater detail about any of the vulnerabilities addressed this month.
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