Microsoft patches critical image file flaw

Redmond (WA) – Microsoft has released its March security update, including one “critical” and two “important” patches. There is also a new version of the company’s Malicious Software Removal Tool (MSRT).

It’s the time of the month again – point your browser to Microsoft’s website and patch the latest round of security leaks. The March update is less comprehensive than the bulletins of recent months, but there are three issues users should pay attention to. All patches affect various version of Windows (2000 Server SP4, XP SP2, SP3 and x64, Server 2003 SP1 and SP2, Server 2008 as well as Vista and Vista SP1) and address one remote code execution problem and two spoofing vulnerabilities.

According to Microsoft, the remote execution issue patches three “privately reported vulnerabilities in the Windows kernel.” The most “serious” allows remote code execution “if a user viewed a specially crafted EMF or WMF image file from an affected system.” Unpatched Windows systems are exposed to attacks that can run “arbitrary” code under Windows, Microsoft said.

The two spoofing vulnerabilities affect a “privately reported” problem in the Secure Channel (SChannel) security package in Windows as well as two undisclosed and two publicly disclosed vulnerabilities in Windows DNS server and Windows WINS server. Microsoft said that these issues may cause Windows computers to be redirected on the Internet and affect user authentication.  

Details about the update can be found on Microsoft’s Technet pages.