Critical security flaw in Windows 7 and Windows XP

Image of ones and zeros with the word

Microsoft has already warned that support for Windows 7 is coming to an end, with security updates and support stopping for the OS next year.

In addition to the patch for the wormable flaw, Microsoft also released 16 software updates to address 78 other CVE-listed vulnerabilities in its products, including its various Windows operating systems, Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer and Edge web browsers, the.

'This vulnerability is pre-authentication and requires no user interaction.

"While we have observed no exploitation of this vulnerability, it is highly likely that malicious actors will write an exploit for this vulnerability and incorporate it into their malware", wrote Simon Pope, director of incident response for the Microsoft Security Response Center. Microsoft is even making fixes available for out-of-support versions XP and Windows 2003, such is the potential threat. Those using out-of-support systems (like Windows 2003 and Windows XP), can download the KB4500705 update in which Microsoft has implemented the necessary security fixes.

"It is for these reasons that we strongly advise that all affected systems - irrespective of whether Network Level Authentication (NLA) is enabled or not - should be updated as soon as possible", the post added. It is wormable, meaning that it allows any malware exploiting the flaw to be able to spread from one vulnerable system to another.

Provided protection against a new subclass of speculative execution sidewall vulnerabilities, known as microarchitecture data sampling, for Windows 64-bit (x64) versions (CVE-2018-11091, CVE-2018-12126, CVE-2018- 12127, CVE-2018-12130).

Microsoft is trying to prevent the outbreak of a computer worm by urging owners of older Windows systems to patch their machines.

According to Microsoft, there is a vulnerability in the Remote Code Execution function of the Remote Desktop Services. Not so for CVE-2019-0863, an elevation of privilege flaw in Windows Error Reporting (WER) deals with files, which Microsoft says is being used by crooks to fully compromise infected machines.

Of all those vulnerabilities, 18 are rated as 'critical' in severity; these are flaws that can be exploited by malicious programmes to steal sensitive data from vulnerable systems by attacking them remotely.

For May 2019 Patch Tuesday, Microsoft has released fixes for 79 vulnerabilities, 22 of which are deemed critical. Windows 8 and Windows 10, by contrast, are unaffected.

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