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UPDATE: Microsoft Disputes PowerPoint Flaw Claim

Microsoft is disputing claims of a zero-day flaw in its PowerPoint application that could allow remote code execution.

"Microsoft's initial investigation has revealed that this is not a new zero-day vulnerability," says a Microsoft spokesman. "Microsoft is actively working in conjunction with MSRA partners to verify those findings and will provide additional information and customer guidance once the investigation is complete."

However, the flaw, whether zero-day or otherwise, appears to be the target of a Trojan.

According to a FAQ document on the Securiteam.com Web site, the flaw can be attacked through a malicious .PPT file that will drop a randomly-named file into the Windows Temp folder. For more details, see the FAQ found here.

As of Aug. 21, some AV vendors have reported they have a sample file and they have started an analysis, says Juha-Matti Laurio, a blogger for SecuriTeam and contributor to the Internet Storm Center.

"The specific risk in this case is the fact that Office applications are being installed to almost every company workstation and actually there are not many companies filtering Office file extensions due to their popularity," says Laurio. "Additionally, there is always a delay when releasing virus signatures against new threats."

"It is important to be aware of malicious Office files (.PPT, etc.) located on Web pages and shared via instant messengers, etc. too," adds Laurio.

About the Author

Shawna McAlearney is a senior Web editor at Application Development Trends.

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