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Microsoft Patch Tuesday - February 2010 - "From Microsoft with Love" Edition

Patch Tuesday Gives Birth to "Zombie Wednesday"

The Tenable research team spent the night writing 14 new plugins to check for the latest round of Microsoft patches. While many will have to schedule patch installations, those who run with full automatic updates enabled are theoretically all patched by now. However, it doesn't hurt to check with a quick Nessus patch audit.

Microsoft is in Love With the Word "Could"

There are several terms used by Microsoft throughout their advisories that spread uncertainty about the risk of the vulnerabilities presented. The excessive use of the world "could" is one such example. In the MS10-002 bulletin Microsoft states:

"An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the local user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights."

I “could” also win the lottery, inherit millions of dollars and walk on water. In the case of this exploit "could" is an exceptionally bad word choice as there are several example videos showcasing the exploit in action using open-source software. The other issue with the above statement is the obligatory "users with less rights on the system will be less impacted". Someone should tell the Microsoft PR team that there are two privilege escalation exploits on the list this month, and one has been widely publicized for almost a month. On that note, let’s take a closer look at the 14 bulletins and 26 vulnerabilities that were patched this month.


Patch Tuesday Breakdown and Thoughts

What follows is a breakdown of the patches that have been released by Microsoft in the latest "Patch Tuesday" set and their associated Nessus plugins:

References