Microsoft delivered a single security patch for a number of flaws in its PowerPoint presentation software. According to the software giant, the patch fixes 14 previously reported remote code execution flaws in PowerPoint, 11 of which Microsoft rates as critical.
"This security update resolves a publicly disclosed vulnerability and several privately reported vulnerabilities in Microsoft Office PowerPoint that could allow remote code execution if a user opens a specially crafted PowerPoint file," a Microsoft's security bulletin reads. "An attacker who successfully exploited any of these vulnerabilities could take complete control of an affected system. 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 users who operate with administrative user rights."
This month's single patch doesn't just address numerous flaws, it also affects numerous versions of PowerPoint, including those included with Office 2000, XP, 2003, and 2007, as well as PowerPoint Viewer, the Office Compatibility Pack, and Microsoft Works. One of the fixes is for a vulnerability that was disclosed just last month, in which maliciously created PPT files can be used to trigger remote code execution on the targeted computer.
As always, users are advised to keep their systems up to date automatically with the Automatic Updates and Windows Update tools in Windows, both of which can be configured to download and install patches for non-Windows Microsoft software such as Office. You can find out more about this month's security bulletin at the Microsoft website.