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Microsoft plans five critical fixes for February

07 Feb 2013
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Microsoft has confirmed it will be issuing at least 12 security bulletins next week in its monthly patch release.

The company said that the Patch Tuesday release will include five fixes rated as critical priority and seven rated as important. The update will address a total of 57 different security issues.

Among the platforms which will be receiving the critical bulletins are Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer and Exchange.

While Microsoft did not disclose the exact nature of the flaws, the company said that the Internet Explorer update would be considered critical for all versions of the browser, while the Windows patches would only be critical for releases prior to Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008.

Critical ratings are most often applied to vulnerabilities which are vulnerable to remote exploit by an attacker and allow for the execution of malicious code without user interaction or notification.

Important flaws generally address code execution flaws which are more difficult to exploit and lower-risk conditions such as denial of service, information disclosure and elevation of privileges.

"This month we see some significant vulnerabilities with the potential to create a formidable one-two punch, which could be key to hackers unleashing powerful attacks," noted Core Security senior product manager Alex Horan.

"When these exploits are used in the right combination, the effects can mean big headaches for system administrators."

Microsoft said that the release will go live at 1800 GMT.

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Shaun Nichols

Shaun Nichols is the US correspondent for He has been with the company since 2006, originally joining as a news intern at the site's San Francisco offices.

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