Threat Level: green Handler on Duty: Jan Kopriva

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Steps to Mitigate Office Vulnerabilities

Published: 2003-09-05
Last Updated: 2003-09-05 18:32:43 UTC
by Handlers (Version: 1)
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Some of the vulnerabilities announced on Wednesday are easily exploited to
execute hostile code without users opening any attachments.

As patching is tricky, we do provide these steps as a work around. Please
do not substitute implementing these steps for patching. However, it may
help mitigate problems.

Proof of concept exploits for the vulnerability have been released to the
public. At this point, it is rather likely that this vulnerability will
be used as a vector to launch a virus or for targeted network intrusions.

The basic idea is to change the message format in Exchange to txt or html.
(In exchange go to tools, options, mailformat, message format )
If this option is "Microsoft Word" any reply or forward with an infected
word document in it can cause word to open the infected document.
The default email editor in office XP (EXCHANGE) is word.

To change which program starts when you open a file

1 In My Computer or Windows NT Explorer, click the View menu, and then
click Options.

2 Click the File Types tab.

3 In the list of file types, click the one you want to change.
The settings for that file type are shown in the File Type Details box.

4 Click Edit.

5 In the Actions box, click Open.

6 Click Edit, and then specify the program you want to use to open
files that have this extension.
Choose word documents (and all other word type files)

change from quick view to confirm open after download.

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