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#1 arunsingh

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Posted 23 December 2002 - 09:19 AM

Microsoft security warning

Microsoft has warned customers about a series of new vulnerabilities in its Windows system, including one that could allow malicious programs written in Java to take over a computer.

The vulnerabilities are in Microsoft's Virtual Machine for Java, which is in all versions of Windows since Windows 98, said John Montgomery, a director in Microsoft's developer platform and evangelism group.

Computer users could be affected by any of the eight vulnerabilities by visiting a Web page that contains malicious Java code on it.

They could get to the web page either by browsing the web page or by receiving an e-mail with hyper-text markup language code in it that redirects them to it, he said.

The vulnerabilities range from one that is rated "critical" to others that are "important," "moderate" and "low." Malicious code could do anything from reformat the hard drive to cause Internet Explorer to fail, Montgomery said.

Microsoft Outlook E-mail Security Update protects users against e-mails with malicious code, he said.

Microsoft also is releasing a new version of its Java Virtual Machine and encouraging people to install it if their systems have not already done so under the Windows automatic update service.

"I know of no one affected, to date," said Montgomery.

Microsoft has made improving software security a major priority this year after a series of high-profile viruses infected thousands of Windows-based machines last year. - Science Report
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