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Posted: 9/15/2004 5:45:35 PM EST
Major graphics flaw threatens Windows PCs

Microsoft published on Tuesday a patch for a major security flaw in its
software's handling of the JPEG graphics format and urged customers to use a
new tool to locate the many applications that are vulnerable.

The critical flaw has to do with how Microsoft's operating systems and other
software process the widely used JPEG image format and could let attackers
create an image file that would run a malicious program on a victim's
computer as soon as the file is viewed. Because the software giant's
Internet Explorer browser is vulnerable, Windows users could fall prey to an
attack just by visiting a Web site that has affected images.

The severity of the flaw had some security experts worried that a virus that
exploits the issue may be on the way.

"The potential is very high for an attack," said Craig Schmugar, virus
research manager for security software company McAfee. "But that said, we
haven't seen any proof-of-concept code yet." Such code illustrates how to
abuse flaws and generally appears soon after a software maker publishes a
patch for one of its products.

The flaw affects various versions of at least a dozen Microsoft software
applications and operating systems, including Windows XP, Windows Server
2003, Office XP, Office 2003, Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1, Project,
Visio, Picture It and Digital Image Pro. The software giant has a full list
of affected applications in the advisory on its Web site. Windows XP Service
Pack 2, which is still being distributed to many customers' computers, is
not vulnerable to the flaw.

"The challenge is that (the flawed function) ships with a variety of
products," said Stephen Toulouse, security program manager for Microsoft's
incident response center.

Because so many applications are affected, Microsoft had to create a
separate tool to help customers update their computers. Users of Windows
Update will also be directed to the software giant's Office Update tool and
then to the tool that will find and update imaging and development
applications. The tools are a preview of what may come from the company in
the future, Toulouse said.

"We know one of the most important things that we hear from customers is to
make the software update process easier," he said. "A goal of a unified
update mechanism is what we are looking at."

Out of necessity, Linux distributions have already developed such unified
update software, which not only updates the core operating system but also
other applications created by the open-source community. The majority of
Windows applications, however, are created by companies other than
Microsoft, making such a unified update system more politically difficult to
create.

The JPEG processing flaw enables a program hidden in an image file to
execute on a victim's system. The flaw is unrelated to another image
vulnerability found in early August. That vulnerability, in a common code
library designed to support the Portable Network Graphics, or PNG, format,
affected applications running on Linux, Windows and Apple's Mac OS X. Both
the JPEG, which stands for Joint Photographic Experts Group, and PNG formats
are commonly used by Web sites.

As part of a notification program that has been in place since April 2004,
any customer that had signed a nondisclosure agreement with Microsoft
received a three-day advance warning about the JPEG flaw.

"Some customers wanted to get more information, for planning purposes,"
Toulouse said, responding to media reports that premium customers were
getting advanced notice of security issues. He directed interested customers
to their Microsoft sales representative to get more information on the
program. The information given to participants in the program is limited to
the number of flaws, the applications affected and the maximum threat level
assigned to the flaws.

The JPEG image-processing vulnerability is the latest flaw from Microsoft
and the source of the company's 28th advisory this year. Microsoft
frequently includes multiple issues in a single advisory; four advisories in
April, for example, contained more than 20 vulnerabilities.

A second patch released by Microsoft on Tuesday fixes a flaw in the
WordPerfect file converter in Microsoft Office, Publisher, Word and Works.
That flaw is rated "important," Microsoft's second-highest threat level,
just below "critical." The vulnerability would let an attacker take control
of the victim's PC, if that user opened a malicious WordPerfect document.

More information on the second flaw can be found in the advisory on
Microsoft's Web site. The software giant recommends that customers use
Office Update to download the fix.


http://news.zdnet.com/2100-1009_22-5366314.html?tag=adnews
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 5:53:37 PM EST
Ridiculous. Ahoy Firefox.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 5:55:30 PM EST

Originally Posted By AW-101:
Ridiculous. Ahoy Firefox.



+1

sg
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:00:20 PM EST
I don't know the details of this flaw, but as a programmer of 20 years it totally blows my mind when I hear of data being interpreted in such a way as to make this possible. Images are not programs or scripts; they should be treated as nothing but data. I don't know WTF MS is doing, but all I can guess is they are simply fucked up.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:04:16 PM EST

Originally Posted By AW-101:
Ridiculous. Ahoy Firefox.



From the article above the flaw just doesnt affect the browser.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:05:03 PM EST

Originally Posted By mattja:
I don't know the details of this flaw, but as a programmer of 20 years it totally blows my mind when I hear of data being interpreted in such a way as to make this possible. Images are not programs or scripts; they should be treated as nothing but data. I don't know WTF MS is doing, but all I can guess is they are simply fucked up.



I don't think they are being treated that way. I believe it's more buffer overflow problems.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:07:10 PM EST

Originally Posted By Atencio:

From the article above the flaw just doesnt affect the browser.



Right. But that is the most likely source of problems. Second most would be Windows Picture and Fax viewer in XP (I'll assume it's afflicted).
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:08:51 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/15/2004 6:09:10 PM EST by Sub-MOA]
old news


-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----

*************************************­*******************************
Title: Microsoft Security Bulletin Summary for September 2004
Issued: September 14, 2004
Version Number: 1.0
Bulletin: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=
*****************************************­***************************

Summary:
========
This advisory contains information about all security updates
released this month. It is broken down by security bulletin severity.

Critical Security Bulletins
===========================

MS04-028 - Buffer Overrun in JPEG Processing (GDI+) Could Allow
Code Execution (833987)

- Affected Software:

- Windows XP and Windows XP Service Pack 1
- Windows XP 64-Bit Edition Service Pack 1
- Windows XP 64-Bit Edition Version 2003
- Windows Server 2003
- Windows Server 2003 64-Bit Edition

- Office 2003
- Office XP Service Pack 3
- Visio 2003 (All versions)
- Visio 2002 Service Pack 2 (All versions)
- Project 2003 (All versions)
- Project 2002 Service Pack 1 (All versions)

- Review bulletin MS04-O28 for information about
these affected operating systems and applications:

- Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Service Pack 6a
- Windows NT Server 4.0 Service Pack 6a
- Windows NT Server 4.0 Terminal Server Edition
Service Pack 6
- Windows 2000 Service Pack 2
- Windows 2000 Service Pack 3
- Windows 2000 Service Pack 4

- The Microsoft .NET Framework, version 1.0
- The Microsoft .NET Framework, version 1.1
- Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1

- Picture It! 2002 (All versions)
- Greetings 2002
- Picture It! version 7.0 (All versions)
- Digital Image Pro version 7.0
- Picture It! version 9 (All versions)
Including Picture It! Library)
- Digital Image Pro version 9
- Digital Image Suite version 9
- Producer for Microsoft Office PowerPoint
(All versions)

- Visual Studio 2003 .NET
- Visual Basic .NET Standard 2003
- Visual C# .NET Standard 2003
- Visual C++ .NET Standard 2003
- Visual J# .NET Standard 2003
- Visual Studio 2002 .NET
- Visual Basic .NET Standard 2002
- Visual C# .NET Standard 2002
- Visual C++ .NET Standard 2002
- The Microsoft .NET Framework, version 1.0 SDK
- Platform SDK Redistributable: GDI+

- Review the FAQ section of bulletin MS04-O28 for
information about these operating systems:

- Microsoft Windows 98
- Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition (SE)
- Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (ME)

- Impact: Remote Code Execution
- Version Number: 1.0


Important Security Bulletins
============================

MS04-027 - Vulnerability in WordPerfect Converter Could
Allow Code Execution (884933)

- Affected Software:
- Office 2003
- Office XP Service Pack 3
- Office 2000 Service Pack 3
- Works Suite (All versions)

- Impact: Remote Code Execution
- Version Number: 1.0


Update Availability:
===================
An update is available to address these issues.
For additional information, including Technical Details,
Workarounds, answers to Frequently Asked Questions,
and Update Deployment Information please read
the Microsoft Security Bulletin Summary for this
month at: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=34846

Support:
========
Technical support is available from Microsoft Product Support
Services at 1-866-PC SAFETY (1-866-727-2338). There is no
charge for support calls associated with security updates.
International customers can get support from their local Microsoft
subsidiaries. Phone numbers for international support can be found
at: http://support.microsoft.com/common/international.aspx

Additional Resources:
=====================
* Microsoft has created a free monthly e-mail newsletter containing
valuable information to help you protect your network. This
newsletter provides practical security tips, topical security
guidance, useful resources and links, pointers to helpful
community resources, and a forum for you to provide feedback
and ask security-related questions.
You can sign up for the newsletter at:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/secnews/default.mspx

* Microsoft has created a free e-mail notification service that
serves as a supplement to the Security Notification Service
(this e-mail). It provides timely notification of any minor
changes or revisions to previously released Microsoft Security
Bulletins. This new service provides notifications that are
written for IT professionals and contain technical information
about the revisions to security bulletins.
Visit http://www.microsoft.com to subscribe to this service:

- Click on Subscribe at the top of the page.
- This will direct you via Passport to the Subscription center.
- Under Newsletter Subscriptions you can sign up for the
"Microsoft Security Notification Service: Comprehensive Version".

* Join Microsoft's webcast for a live discussion of the technical
details of these security bulletins and steps you can take
to protect your environment. Details about the live webcast
can be found at:

http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=

The on-demand version of the webcast will be available 24 hours
after the live webcast at:

http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=

* Protect your PC: Microsoft has provided information on how you
can help protect your PC at the following locations:

http://www.microsoft.com/security/protect/

If you receive an e-mail that claims to be distributing a
Microsoft security update, it is a hoax that may be distributing a
virus. Microsoft does not distribute security updates through
e-mail. You can learn more about Microsoft's software distribution
policies here:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/topics/policy/swdist.mspx

Acknowledgments:
================
Microsoft thanks the following for working with us to protect
customers:

- - Peter Winter-Smith of Next Generation Security Software Ltd.
(http://www.nextgenss.com)
for reporting the issue described in MS04-027.

- - Nick DeBaggis
(ndebaggis@verizon.net)
for reporting the issue described in MS04-028.

*************************************­*******************************
THE INFORMATION PROVIDED IN THE MICROSOFT KNOWLEDGE BASE IS
PROVIDED "AS IS" WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND. MICROSOFT
DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING
THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR
PURPOSE.
IN NO EVENT SHALL MICROSOFT CORPORATION OR ITS SUPPLIERS BE
LIABLE FOR ANY DAMAGES WHATSOEVER INCLUDING DIRECT, INDIRECT,
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ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.
SOME STATES DO NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OR LIMITATION OF LIABILITY
FOR CONSEQUENTIAL OR INCIDENTAL DAMAGES SO THE FOREGOING
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*****************************************­***************************

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Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:15:16 PM EST
So...if I have SP2, then I'm okay???
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:21:30 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/15/2004 6:21:52 PM EST by Bucko]
OMG - MS is such a joke.

Y'all know that XP is basically NT 5 and that the quasi-kernal design of NT was taken as a free download from a college server, right?
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:32:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/15/2004 6:37:06 PM EST by SpentCasing]

Originally Posted By Bucko:
OMG - MS is such a joke.

Y'all know that XP is basically NT 5 and that the quasi-kernal design of NT was taken as a free download from a college server, right?



Provide the facts for this please. This sounds like an urban legend if I ever heard one. Windows 2003 has ~36 million lines of code. I hardly doubt R&D from a college class would have produced one quarter of 1% of XP.

Edited to correct my post: Windows 2000 has ~35 million lines, Windows 2003 has over 50 million lines.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 7:06:36 PM EST
I'm so glad I use a Macintosh, I get to ignore stuff like this...

-Gator
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 7:12:25 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 7:14:35 PM EST
Yep...
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 7:19:32 PM EST
I don't know about JPEG's, but several years ago i recieved a GIF format animated cartoon thing. and i could NOT delete it, at all!! i tryed to modify the frames in a graphic program. It would let me modify it, but still kept the origanal gif also. i got tired of seeing it after a while so i just made it "hidden". well, after a while i had to reformat HD, that finaly got rid of it.
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