Microsoft will release an out-of-band security update today designed to patch a critical flaw in Windows Shell first confirmed by the software firm a fortnight ago.
The update, which was deemed too important to wait until the next scheduled monthly patch delivery, will be released at around 6pm BST.
"Additionally, we're able to confirm that, in the past few days, we've seen an increase in attempts to exploit the vulnerability," wrote Microsoft security response communications manager Christopher Budd in a blog post.
"We firmly believe that releasing the update out of band is the best thing to do to help protect our customers."
The vulnerability could allow hackers to exploit the way Windows parses shortcut files, allowing malicious code to be executed when the icon of a specially crafted shortcut is displayed, according to a Microsoft Security Advisory.
"This vulnerability can be exploited locally through a malicious USB drive, or remotely via network shares and WebDAV," it continued. "An exploit can also be included in specific document types that support embedded shortcuts."
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