New Windows Flaw – XP SP2 Users Not Covered – Update

Wolfgang Kandek

Last updated on: September 7, 2020

Businessweek has an article about the SCADA connection of this flaw, Siemens has issued an advisory and update for the software components that are being attacked by some strains of the malware.

Just three days after July’s Patch Tuesday, Microsoft issued an advisory for an issue affecting all current Windows Operating Systems. The flaw is located in Windows Shell and can be used to execute arbitrary code on vulnerable systems. According to the advisory, Microsoft is aware of targeted attacks in the wild exploiting the issue. Brian Krebs reports that Russian AV company VirusBlokAda detected the attack while analyzing a new malware sample.

The advisory lists workarounds that can be implemented by editing the registry. They change the way certain icons are visualized, so there is a visible impact on the desktop of the user.

The advisory does not list Windows XP SP2, or Windows 2000 for that matter, as being affected, because Microsoft just ended support for both Operating Systems last Tuesday. However we assume the attack works against both of them and attackers will surely take advantage of this security hole. We recommend upgrading your existing Windows XP SP2 installations to SP3 as soon as possible to be able to install the security update for this issue once Microsoft publishes it. Windows 2000 users face a bigger hurdle and they need to upgrade to an entirely new Operating System.

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