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Microsoft Updates May 2013 - Slew of Internet Explorer Critical Vulnerabilities, Kernel EoP, and Others

Kurt Baumgartner
Kaspersky Lab Expert
Posted May 14, 18:06  GMT
Tags: Microsoft, Patch tuesday
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Microsoft released a long list of updates for Microsoft software today. The most interesting appear to be those patching Internet Explorer and the kernel software vulnerabilities. In all, ten critical "use-after-free" vulnerabilities are patched in IE along with one important Information Disclosure vulnerability, and three elevation of privilege vulnerabilities are being patched as well. Almost all of these IE vulnerabilities were reported by external security researchers working through HP's Zero Day Initiative.

The recent Internet Explorer 8 0day implemented with ROP to work across ASLR-protected Windows 7, hosted on the compromised Department of Labor website and others, was used as a part of a targeted attack watering hole campaign suggested to be run by known threat actor "DeepPanda". This IE 0day was reported by the guys over at FireEye and iSight Partners. It is being patched with Security Bulletin MS13-038. The others may not have been actively used by threat actors, but as always, it is very important for all Internet Explorer users to update these asap and avoid being a victim of the more common financially motivated mass-exploitation schemes.

A bit less sexy but very important for organizations to update are the three "Important" kernel escalation of privilege vulnerabilities. While these have not yet been known to be publicly exploited, EoP are actively deployed for post-exploitation purposes and are a significant part of any infiltration exercise. All three of these problems were reported by external security researchers, to whom Microsoft extended a "thanks".

Organizations should also be aware that Http.sys in Windows 8, Windows RT and Windows 2012 is vulnerable to denial of service attacks, but exploiting this bug appears to be very difficult. Accordingly, they are rating it "Important".

Other client side apps are being patched with "Important" rated updates as well, including Word, Publisher, and more. More information on all of these updates can be found over at Microsoft's summary.

Also today, Adobe's PSIRT pushed several important updates in ColdFusion (in the crosshairs for persistent attackers on organizations) and both of their big client side apps Flash and Reader/Acrobat.


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