Microsoft Internet Explorer contains a vulnerability that could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code. Updates are available.
Microsoft Internet Explorer versions 6, 7, and 8 contain a vulnerability that could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on a targeted system.
The vulnerability is due to unsafe handling of corrupted objects.
An unauthenticated, remote attacker could exploit the vulnerability by convincing a user to view a malicious website and perform a number of actions in the website. If successful, the attacker could execute arbitrary code on the system with the privileges of the user.
Microsoft has confirmed this vulnerability in a security bulletin and has released updated software.
Microsoft Internet Explorer versions 6, 7, and 8 are vulnerable when they are running on the following Microsoft systems:
Windows XP SP3 and prior
Windows XP Professional x64 Edition SP2 and prior
Windows Server 2003 SP2 and prior
Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition SP2 and prior
Windows Server 2003 for Itanium-based Systems SP2 and prior
Windows Vista SP2 and prior
Windows Vista x64 Edition SP2 and prior
Windows Server 2008 for 32-bit Systems SP2 and prior
Windows Server 2008 for x64-based Systems SP2 and prior
Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-based Systems SP2 and prior
Windows 7 for 32-bit Systems SP1 and prior
Windows 7 for x64-based Systems SP1 and prior
Windows Server 2008 R2 for x64-based Systems SP1 and prior
Windows Server 2008 R2 for Itanium-based Systems SP1 and prior
To exploit the vulnerability, the attacker may provide a link that directs a user to a malicious site and use misleading language or instructions to persuade the user to follow the provided link.
Microsoft has released a security bulletin at the following link: MS11-057
An unauthenticated, remote attacker could exploit this vulnerability to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the user. If the user holds elevated privileges, the attacker could execute code that results in a complete system compromise.
The vulnerability is due to unsafe handling of corrupted objects. Because of a race condition, objects in memory may become corrupted. When Internet Explorer accesses a corrupted object, memory corruption may occur.
An unauthenticated, remote attacker could exploit the vulnerability by convincing a user to view a malicious website and perform a series of click actions in different Internet Explorer windows, triggering the race condition that could corrupt memory objects and result in memory corruption. The attacker could take advantage of the memory corruption to execute arbitrary code on the system with the privileges of the user.
Administrators are advised to apply the appropriate updates.
Users are advised not to open e-mail messages from suspicious or unrecognized sources. If users cannot verify that links or attachments included in e-mail messages are safe, they are advised not to open them.
Users are advised to read e-mail messages in plaintext.
Administrators may consider configuring Internet Explorer to prompt users before running Active Scripting or ActiveX controls by setting the Internet and Local Intranet security zone settings to High. Alternately, administrators could disable Active Scripting and ActiveX controls in these security zones.
Administrators may consider using the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA) scan tool to identify common security misconfigurations and missing security updates on system endpoints.
Administrators are advised to monitor critical systems.
Microsoft customers can obtain updates directly by using the links in the security bulletin. These updates are also distributed by Windows automatic update features and available on the Windows Update website. Microsoft Windows Server Update Services (WSUS), Systems Management Server, and System Center Configuration Manager can assist administrators in deploying software updates.
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