Microsoft's March Patch Tuesday: 13 bulletins covering 44 vulnerabilties

Five of the bulletins contained critical vulnerabilities.
Five of the bulletins contained critical vulnerabilities.

Microsoft's Patch Tuesday offering for March saw the company issue 13 bulletins, with five rated critical and the remainder important, covering 44 separate vulnerabilities.

Industry watchers noted that this month's bulletin held no major surprises and all said it was good news that none of the issues discussed had been previously disclosed.

“System administrators will be relieved that the March bulletin should be generally straightforward as it does not contain patches for any of the typically complex environments such as Exchange and Share Point,” Craig Young, a researcher with Tripwire's Vulnerability and Exposures Research Team told SCMagazine.com Tuesday in an email.

Bulletin MS16-023, rated critical, is a cumulative update for Internet Explorer fixing issues that could allow an attacker gain administrative rights and take over a system.

“This month the top spot in our ranking belongs to MS16-023 for Internet Explorer. It addresses 13 vulnerabilities, all of them rated critical. These attacks against Internet Explorer would come from malicious websites, which were either setup specifically for that purpose or using otherwise harmless sites as carriers that have the exploits embedded and infect their habitual visitors,” blogged Wolfgang Kandek, chief technology officer (CTO) at Qualys.

Another critical bulletin, MS10024, addresses updates for Microsoft Edge. The vulnerabilities involved are similar to those found in MS16-023.

MS16-026 patches a potential remote code execution problem within Windows Library, while MS16-028 takes care of a flaw in Microsoft Windows PDF Library that also would allow remote code execution.

“MS16-026 fixing yet another… you guessed it, FONT vulnerability and MS16-028 fixes a Microsoft PDF Library vulnerability,” Bobby Kuzma, a CISSP systems engineer at Core Security, said to SCMagazine.com in an Tuesday email.

The final critical update, MS16-027, resolves vulnerabilities with Windows Media that could allow an attacker to remotely execute code.

Bulletins, MS16-031 through MS16-034 all address vulnerabilities that could allow elevation of privilege with Windows, a Windows USB mass storage driver, and Windows Kernel-mode drivers.

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