A bumper Microsoft Patch Tuesday has rolled out 12 security bulletins that collectively address a hefty 57 vulnerabilities.
Five of these bulletins reveal critical holes in the software giant's products: one bulletin (MS13-009) covers 13 bugs found in Internet Explorer, while another (MS13-016) tackles a privilege-escalation flaw in win32k.sys, a core Windows kernel-mode component. One of the IE bugs can be exploited by an attacker to gain control of a user's machine via a drive-by download.
Another update (MS13-010) also patches Microsoft's web browser to squash a security bug in an ActiveX dynamic-link library. This update is, if anything, even more important because it addresses a vulnerability that's being actively exploited by miscreants.
The other critical updates cover Windows bugs, as explained in Microsoft's bulletin here.
In other patching news, Adobe followed up a Flash release last week that grappled with two 0-day vulnerabilities, with a new patch for its plugin. The update fixes 17 security flaws. Users of Internet Explorer 10 and Google Chrome should be patched automatically.
Commentary on both updates can be found in a blog post by Wolfgang Kandek, CTO of Qualys, here. ®