Security Flaw Found With Outlook VCards - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
News

Security Flaw Found With Outlook VCards

Security consulting and research firm @Stake Inc. has discovered a security flaw within Microsoft's ubiquitous Outlook and Outlook Express E-mail applications. The vulnerability concerns the use of Outlook's vCards, or virtual business cards, which can fall victim to a buffer overflow attack or contain code that can attack a user's system.

VCards can be created with malicious code that can either cause Outlook to crash, or even allow the E-mail application to run damaging code on a targeted victim's system. In Microsoft Security Bulletin MS01-012, posted Thursday, Microsoft admitted that the flaw is potentially devastating. "In the more serious case, the attacker could cause the mail client to run code of her choice on the user's machine. Such code could take any desired action, limited only by the permissions of the recipient on the machine," the bulletin states.

This means that if an unsuspecting user opens the malicious vCard, virtually anything can happen, including reforming the disk drive, adding or deleting files, or any other dangerous action.

Ollie Whitehouse, security architect manager for @stake, says he discovered the flaw late last year and worked with Microsoft testing the patch. Whitehouse says users who install the patch will be protected but warns that users should "always be intelligent about what they're downloading. Even seemingly benign attachments can be malicious."

The flaw is serious enough that Microsoft recommends all Outlook users update their browser with the security patch. Since the flawed software component ships with Internet Explorer, users are recommended to download the Internet Explorer patch at http://www.microsoft.com/windows/ie/download/critical/q283908/default.asp.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
The State of IT & Cybersecurity Operations 2020
The State of IT & Cybersecurity Operations 2020
Download this report from InformationWeek, in partnership with Dark Reading, to learn more about how today's IT operations teams work with cybersecurity operations, what technologies they are using, and how they communicate and share responsibility--or create risk by failing to do so. Get it now!
News
IT Spending Forecast: Unfortunately, It's Going to Hurt
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  5/15/2020
Commentary
Helping Developers and Enterprises Answer the Skills Dilemma
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  5/19/2020
Slideshows
Top 10 Programming Languages in Demand Right Now
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  4/28/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Key to Cloud Success: The Right Management
This IT Trend highlights some of the steps IT teams can take to keep their cloud environments running in a safe, efficient manner.
White Papers
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll