Microsoft Security Bulletin: January 2010

Published: 2010-01-12
Last Updated: 2010-01-21 20:08:05 UTC
by Johannes Ullrich (Version: 1)
2 comment(s)

 Overview of the January 2010 Microsoft patch and status.

# Affected Contra Indications Known Exploits Microsoft rating ISC rating(*)
clients servers
MS10-002 Cumulative Security Update in Internet Explorer
Internet Explorer
KB 978207 No known exploits. Severity:Critical
Exploitability: 2
PATCH NOW Important
We will update issues on this page for about a week or so as they evolve.
We appreciate updates
US based customers can call Microsoft for free patch related support on 1-866-PCSAFETY
(*): ISC rating
  • We use 4 levels:
    • PATCH NOW: Typically used where we see immediate danger of exploitation. Typical environments will want to deploy these patches ASAP. Workarounds are typically not accepted by users or are not possible. This rating is often used when typical deployments make it vulnerable and exploits are being used or easy to obtain or make.
    • Critical: Anything that needs little to become "interesting" for the dark side. Best approach is to test and deploy ASAP. Workarounds can give more time to test.
    • Important: Things where more testing and other measures can help.
    • Less Urgent: Typically we expect the impact if left unpatched to be not that big a deal in the short term. Do not forget them however.
  • The difference between the client and server rating is based on how you use the affected machine. We take into account the typical client and server deployment in the usage of the machine and the common measures people typically have in place already. Measures we presume are simple best practices for servers such as not using outlook, MSIE, word etc. to do traditional office or leisure work.
  • The rating is not a risk analysis as such. It is a rating of importance of the vulnerability and the perceived or even predicted threat for affected systems. The rating does not account for the number of affected systems there are. It is for an affected system in a typical worst-case role.
  • Only the organization itself is in a position to do a full risk analysis involving the presence (or lack of) affected systems, the actually implemented measures, the impact on their operation and the value of the assets involved.
  • All patches released by a vendor are important enough to have a close look if you use the affected systems. There is little incentive for vendors to publicize patches that do not have some form of risk to them


Johannes B. Ullrich, Ph.D.
SANS Technology Institute

2 comment(s)


This doesn't really make sense. The advance notification specified a Windows 2000 update, while this notification seems to be the same patch as the EOT that was released a few months ago. If you look at the MS notification, both are listed (a different one under exploitability than under executive summary). I questioned my MS rep and he is to be checking with the MS security team.
@millerb: The vulnerability affects nearly all versions of Windows, but is only critical on 2000 SP4 due to heap protections on newer platforms.
Although the bulletin is simlar to MS09-065, the previous EOT flaw, MS10-01 is a vulnerability in user-space where MS09-065 was a kernel-space bug.

See this post on the Microsoft SRD blog for detail:

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