|Microsoft has described five of the
vulnerabilities as critical.
Experts at SophosLabs™, Sophos's global
network of virus and spam analysis centres, have urged companies
and home users to act quickly as Microsoft has released information
about new security holes in their products. Five of the advisories
are labelled "critical", Microsoft's highest severity level, and
could leave users' computers vulnerable to attack.
"If you use Microsoft products you need to keep updated with the
latest Microsoft security patches, or you will be leaving yourself
open to attack," said Graham Cluley, senior
technology consultant for Sophos. "In the past hackers and virus
writers have exploited vulnerabilities to break into
internet-connected computers for the purposes of stealing money and
resources, or launching spam or denial-of-service campaigns."
Microsoft has posted details of the vulnerabilities and made
available updates which are reported to fix the issues on its
Home users of Microsoft Windows can visit windowsupdate.microsoft.com to have their systems
scanned for critical Microsoft security vulnerabilities.
"Home users are particularly open to attack, because they have
often not bothered to download the latest security patches from
Microsoft, and may not be running up-to-date anti-virus software or
a personal firewall," continued Cluley. "It's essential that all
computer users ensure their systems are properly defended and
follow safe computing best practice."
Sophos recommends that every IT manager responsible for security
should consider subscribing to vulnerability mailing lists such as
that operated by Microsoft at www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/notify.mspx.
Sophos continues to recommend computer users practise safe computing as well as running
up-to-date anti-virus software.