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Government Issues Warning to Microsoft Users: Protect Your Device from Windows, Office, Bing, and Outlook Security Risks

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Microsoft users alert! Govt. warns against risk in Windows, Office, Bing and Outlook: How to protect your device

In a recent development, CERT-In, the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team, has issued a warning concerning the security of users utilizing various Microsoft services. The agency has identified significant vulnerabilities in multiple Microsoft products, assigning a high severity rating to the issue. The vulnerabilities affect a range of Microsoft offerings, including Microsoft Windows, Azure services, Microsoft Office, Bing, Microsoft Dynamics, System Center, and Exchange Server.

Specifically, Microsoft Exchange Server, a crucial tool for business collaboration, has been found to be vulnerable. These weaknesses present various potential exploits, such as elevated privilege escalation, confidential information retrieval, security measure bypassing, remote code execution, spoofing attacks initiation, and denial of service disruptions.

Of particular concern are the vulnerabilities affecting Windows operating systems. CERT-In has identified numerous impacted versions, including various iterations of Windows 10 and Windows 11. These vulnerabilities could potentially allow unauthorized access to users’ devices, enabling attackers to assume control or remotely steal sensitive information.

The vulnerabilities arise due to inadequacies in the protection mechanisms of the affected software, most notably the SmartScreen feature designed to safeguard against malware. Unfortunately, the SmartScreen feature has inadvertently facilitated malware infiltration, allowing attackers to exploit security gaps by sending specially crafted requests.

To mitigate the risks posed by these vulnerabilities, CERT-In recommends that users regularly update their devices with the latest patches and security updates. Timely installation of updates is essential to addressing known vulnerabilities and protecting against potential exploits. With the potential for attackers to exploit these weaknesses and compromise system integrity, users of various Microsoft products and services are urged to remain vigilant and proactive in applying necessary security measures, such as keeping their software up-to-date.

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