On Thursday, May 1st, Microsoft issued an “out-of-cycle” security update to address a major Internet Explorer flaw publicly disclosed last week. The flaw is a remote code execution vulnerability that lures IE users to click on malicious links, which potentially could give hackers full control of individual PCs.
Microsoft has included Windows XP in the security update to fix the loophole despite saying there would be no more free fixes for the outdated operating system (click HERE to view our last Tech Tip covering the end of Windows XP).
Microsoft group manager of response communications Dustin Childs said: “We have made the decision to issue a security update for Windows XP users. Windows XP is no longer supported by Microsoft, and we continue to encourage customers to migrate to a modern operating system, such as Windows 7 or 8.1. Additionally, customers are encouraged to upgrade to the latest version of Internet Explorer, IE 11.” [source]
How will this fix be implemented?
For consumers and individuals who have automatic updates turned on, the security patch will be installed automatically. However, many end users remain skeptical about automatic updates and may also not know how to verify whether this feature is turned on. In most organizations, there is no one verifying if updates were completed or not, thus leaving the network at risk of compromise.
Customers of ROSE ITSL currently benefit from a proactive IT maintenance and monitoring service. Our 24/7 remote monitoring and patch management service immediately downloaded the Internet Explorer update in less than 24 hours after it was issued by Microsoft. The patch was distributed to client servers and workstations over the next few days according to their customized maintenance schedules. All updates were completed without the customer having to 1) stress over click “Yes” when prompted for an unfamiliar update or 2) waiting for an IT technician to physically visit on-site to manually install the update.
What else do I need to remember?
This patch should resolve any Internet Explorer issues. However, consider the following to adhere to smart Internet usage:
NEVER click ANY embedded links in email messages or on web pages unless you know the sender/source and are clear about why they want you to look at the link
NEVER browse public web pages from PCs that access confidential data like credit card, protected health, or personally identifiable information
UPGRADE your computers and software to computer running the latest versions of Windows 7/8.1 and to Internet Explorer 11.
Call or open a ticket with your IT provider BEFORE clicking on anything that appears suspicious, or if you think your computer has been affected
How else can proactive IT services benefit your business?
By keeping your employees productive and efficient, which saves you money
By keeping your data and network secure, which gives you peace of mind
By keeping your systems running 24/7, which allows you to better serve your customers
By keeping your IT goals in focus, which helps you strategize for the future
By keeping a bank of IT experience — high-level consultancy, best-in-class management software, and on-site support — in charge of your technology, which provides a valuable competitive edge in today’s rapidly evolving marketplace