CERT recommends anything but IE

Safer surfing


US CERT (the US Computer Emergency Readiness Team), is advising people to ditch Internet Explorer and use a different browser after the latest security vulnerability in the software was exposed.

A statement on the CERT site said: "There are a number of significant vulnerabilities in technologies relating to the IE domain/zone security model, the DHTML object model, MIME type determination, and ActiveX. It is possible to reduce exposure to these vulnerabilities by using a different web browser, especially when browsing untrusted sites." CERT otherwise recommends users to set security settings to high and disable JavaScript

Malicious code, dubbed variously as "Scob" or "Download.Ject", originally posted last week on a Russian website, could be downloaded secretly onto websites using Microsoft's Internet Information Server 5.0. The code could then be used to log keystrokes made by visitors to the site - so long as they used Internet Explorer as their browser. Information, including passwords, was then to be emailed to the criminals behind the atack.

Microsoft said that it was unaware of widespread consumer impact and noted that the Russian site had been taken offline. It said some enterprise users of Windows 2000 Server, specifically users running IIS 5.0, were being targeted by "Download.Ject". According to MS, this is not a trojan or worm but "a targeted manual attack by individuals or entities towards a specific server". It said users should use a firewall, ensure they have the latest software updates and use anti-virus software.

Bill Gates, Microsoft chairman, called on users to switch on auto-update so that patches would spread faster. Speaking to Reuters in Australia at the weekend, he vowed to "guarantee that the average time to fix will come down. The thing we have to do is not only get these patches done very quickly...we also have to convince people to turn on auto-update."®

Related stories

Watch out! Incoming mass hack attack
Unpatched IE vuln exploited by adware
MS hatches June patch batch


Other stories you might like

  • Minimal, systemd-free Alpine Linux releases version 3.16
    A widespread distro that many of its users don't even know they have

    Version 3.16.0 of Alpine Linux is out – one of the most significant of the many lightweight distros.

    Version 3.16.0 is worth a look, especially if you want to broaden your skills.

    Alpine is interesting because it's not just another me-too distro. It bucks a lot of the trends in modern Linux, and while it's not the easiest to set up, it's a great deal easier to get it working than it was a few releases ago.

    Continue reading
  • Verizon: Ransomware sees biggest jump in five years
    We're only here for DBIRs

    The cybersecurity landscape continues to expand and evolve rapidly, fueled in large part by the cat-and-mouse game between miscreants trying to get into corporate IT environments and those hired by enterprises and security vendors to keep them out.

    Despite all that, Verizon's annual security breach report is again showing that there are constants in the field, including that ransomware continues to be a fast-growing threat and that the "human element" still plays a central role in most security breaches, whether it's through social engineering, bad decisions, or similar.

    According to the US carrier's 2022 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) released this week [PDF], ransomware accounted for 25 percent of the observed security incidents that occurred between November 1, 2020, and October 31, 2021, and was present in 70 percent of all malware infections. Ransomware outbreaks increased 13 percent year-over-year, a larger increase than the previous five years combined.

    Continue reading
  • Slack-for-engineers Mattermost on open source and data sovereignty
    Control and access are becoming a hot button for orgs

    Interview "It's our data, it's our intellectual property. Being able to migrate it out those systems is near impossible... It was a real frustration for us."

    These were the words of communication and collaboration platform Mattermost's founder and CTO, Corey Hulen, speaking to The Register about open source, sovereignty and audio bridges.

    "Some of the history of Mattermost is exactly that problem," says Hulen of the issue of closed source software. "We were using proprietary tools – we were not a collaboration platform before, we were a games company before – [and] we were extremely frustrated because we couldn't get our intellectual property out of those systems..."

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022