Microsoft Patches Windows Security Hole

Monday, January 19, 2015 @ 02:01 PM gHale

While it was almost a week ago, Patch Tuesday is still an important day as Microsoft released one critical security bulletin and seven others rated “important.”

The critical bulletin addressees a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows’ Telnet Service that enables an attacker to remotely execute code via specially-crafted packets sent to an affected Windows server. Only users who enable Telnet are vulnerable to the issue. Telnet is not a default installation on systems running Windows Vista and later, and is on Windows Server 2003, but not enabled.

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Four of the eight bulletins have to deal with privilege escalation issues. One of these, MS15-004 is under limited, targeted attacks, According to Microsoft, the vulnerability exists in the TS WebProxy Windows component and occurs when Windows fails to properly sanitize file paths. Currently, the vulnerability is in attacks as a sandbox bypass.

“To successfully exploit this vulnerability, an attacker would have to take advantage of an existing vulnerability in Internet Explorer by tricking a user into downloading a specially crafted application,” Microsoft said in its advisory. “In a web-based attack scenario, an attacker could host a website that is used to attempt to exploit this vulnerability. In addition, compromised websites and websites that accept or host user-provided content could contain specially crafted content that could exploit this vulnerability.”

The privilege escalation issues fixed in the updates include the bug uncovered by Google in Windows 8.1. The remaining bulletins address a vulnerability that could allow denial of service on an Internet Authentication Service (IAS) or Network Policy Server (NPS) and two others that could allow an attacker to bypass a security feature in Windows.

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