Sun?s Javasoft unit has issued licensees of its Java Virtual Machine (JVM) with a patch to fix a potential security hole in the product's byte code verifier.
Although Javasoft refused to divulge the problem the bug could cause, it did explain that if users choose to compile their Java code, they compile it into byte code, which is then executed on the JVM. The byte code verifier acts as a security mechanism to ensure there is no rogue code contained in a given applet.
But Amy Porter, Javasoft?s European marketing manager, played down the incident. ?We found the bug during a routine security audit, but it only has to do with byte code and we?ve given the patch to all our JVM licensees. It hasn?t caused real problems in the market and we don?t expect it to. No-one found it but us and the only way to get at the bug would be to handcraft evil byte code. That would be the equivalent of writing in Assembler, and no-one?s going to bother doing that,? she said.
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