Microsoft has issued two patches for a Word 97 bug and an ActiveX Control bug which could allow hackers to run malicious code on a user?s machine without warning.
The company stressed that they have had no reports of any affected customers so far.
Word 97 warns users when opening a document that contains macros. However, if that document does not contain macros but is linked to a template which does, no warning is issued.
A hacker could exploit this vulnerability by causing malicious code to be run without warning when a user opens a Word document attached to an email or on a web site. This code could be used to damage or retrieve data on a user?s system.
The Word 97 template security patch will mean users will be warned before they launch a template that contains a macro.
The Microsoft Forms 2.0 control is an ActiveX control that developers use to create custom dialogue boxes.
This control is part of Visual Basic for Applications(VBA) and is installed with Office 97, the Outlook 98 messaging and collaboration client, Microsoft Project 98, certain optional installations of the Visual Basic development system version 5.0 and in third party applications that license VBA.
A hacker could use the Forms 2.0 Control to read or export text on a user?s Clipboard when that user visits a webs site set up by the hacker or opens an html based email created by the hacker.
The Forms 2.0 control security patch prevents hackers from exploiting this vulnerability.
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