Microsoft’s Internet Explorer could inadvertently allow a hacker to read
files on a person’s computer, another problem for the company just days after a
serious vulnerability received an emergency patch.
The problem was actually discovered as long as two years ago but has
persisted despite two attempts by Microsoft to fix it, said Jorge Luis Alvarez
Medina, a security consultant with Core Security Technologies. He is scheduled
to give a presentation at the Black Hat conference in Washington, D.C., on Feb.
The issue could allow a hacker to read files on a person’s computer but not
install other code. Nonetheless, the problem represents a serious security issue,
Medina said. It affects all of Microsoft’s operating systems from Windows NT
through Windows 7 and every version of IE, including the latest one, IE8.