Updates, updates, updates! (Update!)

Not only Microsoft has to deal with security risks. Also Apple released a security update to Mac OS 10.5.6 (Security Update 2008-008), fixing 21 holes in their operating system. Mac users should get the updates via the automatic update mechanism – and apply them ASAP.

As remediation of the risks of the still open security hole in Microsofts Internet Explorer we recommended switching to alternative browsers like Opera or Firefox.

Firefox 3 Logo

If you use those browsers, make sure to apply the latest patches. The Mozilla Foundation just released Firefox 3.0.5 and the last version with security fixes for the 2.x-tree, you can get them by choosing “check for updates” in the help-menu of the browser. Those versions fix several critical rated vulnerabilities which may lead to execution of injected code, simply by browsing the “wrong” webpages. Opera also published a new version, 9.63. It plugs seven holes, which of two are rated extremely severe and three highly severe. They can get abused to foist malware on the user’s computer as well, simply by browsing the “wrong” webpages.

Meanwhile, Microsoft has developed a patch for the vulnerability in the Internet Explorer. The Redmond company announced to release the patch today, so prepare for applying it in a few hours.

Update December 18, 2008, 7:45 am: The Internet Explorer update is now available. Start Windows Update as soon as possible (in most OSes hit “Start” and choose “Windows Update”, then search for the recent patches and install them as offered.)

Dirk Knop
Technical Editor