Threat of the month: Adobe vulnerabilities

What is it?

A large number of vulnerabilities have been reported in Adobe Reader for all supported platforms. 

How does it work?

The vulnerabilities exist in various libraries and have different causes. One, for example, parses images embedded in PDF files. Another parses BMP images, where the image data is copied into the buffer based on the size of the image stream without performing any boundary checks. This may result in a heap-based buffer overflow, allowing execution of arbitrary code.

Should I be worried?

Adobe Reader X provides an extra layer of defense via the new sandbox feature, but since one of the reported vulnerabilities allows bypassing this feature, all users, regardless of version, should be cautious when opening PDF files.

How can I prevent it?

Adobe released updated versions (10.1.1, 9.4.6, and 8.3.1), which should be installed to address the vulnerabilities.

Source: Carsten Eiram, chief security specialist, Secunia

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