Critical Patches Issued for Microsoft Products

Critical Patches Issued for Microsoft Products

A cybersecurity advisory was issued Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019, regarding critical patches being issued for a variety of Microsoft products.

What It Is:
Multiple vulnerabilities have been discovered in Microsoft products, the most severe of which could allow for code execution. Successful exploitation of the most severe of these vulnerabilities could result in an attacker gaining the same privileges as the logged on user. Depending on the privileges associated with the user, an attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than those who operate with administrative user rights.

Learn more about the patches from the Microsoft Security Update Summary. You may also wish to visit the January 2019 Security Updates from Microsoft.

Threat Intelligence:
There are currently no reports of these vulnerabilities being exploited in the wild.

What It Means:
If your business or organization uses and of the Microsoft products listed below, you will need to apply the patches after appropriate testing to prevent a possible security breach.

Systems Affected Include:

• Adobe Flash Player
• Internet Explorer
• Microsoft Edge
• Microsoft Windows
• Microsoft Office and Microsoft Office Services and Web Apps
• ChakraCore
• .NET Framework
• Microsoft Dynamics NAV
• Microsoft Exchange Server
• Microsoft Visual Studio
• Windows Azure Pack (WAP)

Risk:
Government:
• Large and medium government entities: High
• Small government entities: Medium
Businesses:
• Large and medium business entities: High
• Small business entities: Medium
Home users: Low

Technical Summary:
Multiple vulnerabilities have been discovered in Microsoft products, the most severe of which could allow for code execution.

A full list of all vulnerabilities can be found at the link below:
https://portal.msrc.microsoft.com/en-us/security-guidance/summary

Successful exploitation of the most severe of these vulnerabilities could result in an attacker gaining the same privileges as the logged on user. Depending on the privileges associated with the user, an attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than those who operate with administrative user rights.

What To Do:
We recommend the following actions be taken:

• Apply appropriate patches or appropriate mitigations provided by Microsoft to vulnerable systems immediately after appropriate testing
• Run all software as a non-privileged user (one without administrative rights) to diminish the effects of a successful attack.
• Remind all users not to visit untrusted websites or follow links provided by unknown or untrusted sources.
• Inform and educate users regarding threats posed by hypertext links contained in emails or attachments especially from untrusted sources
• Apply the Principle of Least Privilege to all systems and services.

Negative Consequences of Lost or Stolen Data:
The loss or theft of proprietary data can have severe impacts, particularly if the compromise becomes public and sensitive information is exposed. Possible impacts include:

• Temporary or permanent loss of sensitive or proprietary information.
• Disruption to regular operations.
• Financial losses incurred to restore systems and files.
• Potential harm to an organization’s reputation.

Should your agency or business need assistance with the detection of vulnerabilities in any of the above products or updates to include patches, Dox can help. Please contact Dox if there is anything we can do to assist in securing your agency, business, or organization.

Thank you for your time and stay safe online.