Microsoft will release an emergency update on Tuesday for Internet Explorer that fixes nine vulnerabilities, including one that has been exploited in attacks on IE6 and IE7 systems, the company said on Monday.
The zero-day IE hole could allow an attacker to take control of a machine if a user visited a malicious Web site. Users of IE8 and Windows 7 are not vulnerable to that particular flaw, Microsoft said in its bulletin notification. However, all current versions of Windows are listed as affected by the cumulative patch because there are nine vulnerabilities being addressed, according to a Microsoft Security Response Center blog post.
"Microsoft's decision to accelerate the release rather than waiting until next Patch Tuesday on April 13th is an indication that attacks against the 'iepeers' vulnerability are on the rise," Wolfgang Kandek, chief technology officer of Qualys, wrote in a blog post. "If you are still using IE6 or IE7, patch immediately. But even if you are on IE8 you should patch as quickly as possible, as attackers will start reverse engineering the flaws addressed and preparing corresponding exploits within the week."