Microsoft fixes 28 flaws; 6 are critical

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Microsoft on Tuesday released its December 2008 security bulletin. The “critical” bulletins affect Windows GDI, Word, Excel, Internet Explorer and Windows Search. The “important” updates affect SharePoint and Windows Media Components.

MS08-070: Critical – Titled “Vulnerabilities in Visual Basic 6.0 Runtime Extended Files (ActiveX Controls) Could Allow Remote Code Execution (932349)”, this bulletin affects the Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 Runtime Extended Files; all supported editions of Microsoft Visual Studio .Net 2002, Microsoft Visual Studio .Net 2003, Microsoft Visual FoxPro 8.0, Microsoft Visual FoxPro 9.0, Microsoft Office Project 2003, and Microsoft Office Project 2007.MS08-071: Critical – Titled “Vulnerabilities in GDI Could Allow Remote Code Execution (956802)”, this bulletin is rated critical for all supported editions of Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2008.  Microsoft says “exploitation of either of these vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user opens a specially crafted WMF image file. An attacker who successfully exploited these vulnerabilities could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

MS08-072: Critical – Titled “Vulnerabilities in Microsoft Office Word Could Allow Remote Code Execution (957173),” this bulletin is rated critical for supported editions of Microsoft Office Word 2000 and Microsoft Office Outlook 2007. For supported editions of Microsoft Office Word 2002, Microsoft Office Word 2003, Microsoft Office Word 2007, Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack, Microsoft Office Word Viewer 2003, Microsoft Works 8, Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac, Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, and Open XML File Format Converter for Mac, this security update is rated important.  Microsoft says this bulletin resolves “eight privately reported vulnerabilities in Microsoft Office Word and Microsoft Office Outlook that could allow remote code execution if a user opens a specially crafted Word or Rich Text Format (RTF) file. An attacker who successfully exploited these vulnerabilities could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.”

MS08-073: Critical – Titled “Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer (958215)”, this bulletin is rated critical for Internet Explorer 5.01 and Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1, running on Microsoft Windows 2000; Internet Explorer 6 running on Windows XP; and Internet Explorer 7. For Internet Explorer 6 running on Windows Server 2003, this security update is rated “moderate.”  Microsoft says the vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user views a specially crafted Web page using Internet Explorer.

MS08-074: Critical – Titled “Vulnerabilities in Microsoft Office Excel Could Allow Remote Code Execution (959070).” This bulletin is rated critical for all supported editions of Microsoft Office Excel 2000. For all supported editions of Microsoft Office Excel 2002, Microsoft Office Excel 2003, Microsoft Office Excel Viewer 2003, Microsoft Office Excel 2007, Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack, Microsoft Office Excel Viewer, Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac, Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, and Open XML File Format Converter for Mac, this security update is rated important. For Internet Explorer 6 running on Windows Server 2003, this security update is rated moderate. Microsoft says if a user opens a specially crafted Excel file an attacker could exploit these vulnerabilities and take complete control of an affected system.

MS08-075: Critical – Titled “Vulnerabilities in Windows Search Could Allow Remote Code Execution (959349)” This bulletin is rated critical for all supported editions of Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.  Microsoft says that “these vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user opens and saves a specially crafted saved-search file within Windows Explorer or if a user clicks a specially crafted search URL. An attacker who successfully exploited these vulnerabilities could take complete control of an affected system.”

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