Another Microsoft Security Hole ?

Received this in today. Makes grim reading.

National Cyber Awareness System              Technical Cyber Security Alert TA12-174A

Microsoft XML Core Services Attack Activity

Original release date: June 22, 2012

Last revised: —

Source: US-CERT

Systems Affected

Microsoft XML Core Services 3.0, 4.0, 5.0, and 6.0 are affected.   Microsoft Internet Explorer, Microsoft Office 2003, and Microsoft Office 2007 are affected due to their use of XML Core Services.


Microsoft Security Advisory (2719615) warns of active attacks using  a vulnerability in Microsoft XML Core Services. Microsoft Internet  Explorer and Microsoft Office can be used as attack vectors.


Microsoft Security Advisory (2719615), a Google Online Security  blog post, Sophos, and other sources report active attacks exploiting a vulnerability in Microsoft XML Core Services

(CVE-2012-1889). Attack scenarios involve exploits served by  compromised web sites and delivered in Office documents. Reliable public exploit code is available, and attacks may become more   widespread.


By convincing a victim to view a specially crafted web page or Office document, an attacker could execute arbitrary code and take any action as the victim.


  As of June 22, 2012, a comprehensive update is not available.

Consider the following workarounds.

Apply Fix it

Apply the Fix it solution described in Microsoft Knowledge Base

Article 2719615. This solution uses the Application  Compatibility Database feature to make runtime modifications to XML Core Services to patch the vulnerability.

Disable scripting   Configure Internet Explorer to disable Active Scripting in the  Internet  and Local intranet zones as described in Microsoft Security Advisory (2719615). See also Securing Your Web Browser.

Use the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET)

EMET is a utility to configure Windows runtime mitigation features such as Data Execution Prevention (DEP), Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR), and Structured Exception Handler Overwrite Protection (SEHOP). These features, particularly the  combination of system-wide DEP and ASLR, make it more difficult  for an attacker to successfully exploit a vulnerability.  Configure EMET for Internet Explorer as described in Microsoft  Security Advisory (2719615).


* Microsoft Security Advisory (2719615) –   <>

* Microsoft Security Advisory: Vulnerability in Microsoft XML Core

Services could allow remote code execution –   <>

* NVD Vulnerability Summary for CVE-2012-1889 –


* Microsoft XML vulnerability under active exploitation –


* European aeronautical supplier’s website infected with “state-sponsored” zero-day exploit –


* Securing Your Web Browser –


* Application Compatibility Database –


Revision History

June 22, 2012: Initial release

Feedback can be directed to US-CERT Technical Staff. Please send email to <> with “TA12-174A Feedback VU#783993” in  the subject.

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