A Vulnerability in Microsoft XML

by Sam T
This article discusses about a flaw in Microsoft XML that can allow attackers to gain access to a system. The vulnerability is known to all versions of Microsoft OS, and other popular supported programs such as Microsoft Office 2003 and 2007. This vulnerability can be exploited just by simply loading a malicious web page but most users have been taught not to click on any suspicious links. One way attackers are getting around this is to take over a well known site that many users are already going to. Experts say one European Medical Site was hijacked and implanted with a corrupted code, exploiting the XML flaw. Although Microsoft gave advice on how to reduce the risk of the flaw, Microsoft has not released an update to cover this exploit. The author goes on and discusses how to protect yourself such as making sure your security software is up to date with it’s definitions and also to use the Fix-it tool from Microsoft which will implement measures to block the site the vulnerability is at.

I felt this article was related to our topic because we began going over XML this week. I felt this article was relevant as I saw a couple of other articles discussing about this same flaw and how Microsoft has not included a patch in their recent updates. It seems like this flaw has been noticed for a while now as attackers are finding new ways to upload their malicious codes to exploit this XML flaw.

Ripley, C. (2012, June). Attackers Exploit Unpatched Windows XML Flaw. http://www.pcworld.com/article/258177/attackers_exploit_unpatched_windows_xml_flaw.html

3 thoughts on “A Vulnerability in Microsoft XML

  • November 18, 2012 at 10:56 pm
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    It seems like Microsoft has always had problems regarding XML exploits in their software. I remember in the past, they had to roll out patches for XML related exploits for various software services. They need a team dedicated to handling XML exploits and to quickly creating patches for those vulnerabilities.

  • November 19, 2012 at 1:23 am
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    I read in another related article similar to yours that an exploit for an unpatched vulnerability in the Microsoft XML Core Services has been incorporated into Blackhole. Blackhole is one of the most popular exploit toolkits. Exploit kits are used in the majority of Web-based attacks launched from compromised websites and are one of the primary methods of infected computers with malware.

  • November 19, 2012 at 10:36 am
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    After reading your post, I think I’m switching to Apple. On a more serious note, I think Microsoft is doing the best they can to update the community with frequent patches. However, I think the vulnerability applies only to people who use Windows Explorer. According to this article I read, Microsoft issued security patches for the public regarding the use of their browser:
    http://www.pcworld.com/article/257950/patch_now_internet_explorer_flaw_under_attack.html

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