Microsoft Security Advisory (969136)
Vulnerability in Microsoft Office PowerPoint Could Allow Remote Code Execution
Published: April 2, 2009
Microsoft is investigating new reports of a vulnerability in Microsoft Office PowerPoint that could allow remote code execution if a user opens a specially crafted PowerPoint file. At this time, we are aware only of limited and targeted attacks that attempt to use this vulnerability.
We are actively working with partners in our Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP) and our Microsoft Security Response Alliance (MSRA) program to provide information that they can use to provide broader protections to customers.
Microsoft will take the appropriate action to protect our customers, which may include providing a solution through our monthly security update release process, or an out-of-cycle security update, depending on customer needs.
Customers in the U.S. and Canada who believe they are affected can receive technical support from Security Support or 1-866-PCSAFETY. There is no charge for support calls that are associated with security updates. For more information about available support options, see Microsoft Help and Support.
International customers can receive support from their local Microsoft subsidiaries. There is no charge for support that is associated with security updates. For more information about how to contact Microsoft for support issues, visit the International Support Web site.
An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the local user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less affected than users who operate with administrative user rights.
In a Web-based attack scenario, an attacker would have to host a Web site that contains an Office file that is used to attempt to exploit this vulnerability. In addition, compromised Web sites and Web sites that accept or host user-provided content could contain specially crafted content that could exploit this vulnerability. In all cases, however, an attacker would have no way to force users to visit these Web sites. Instead, an attacker would have to convince users to visit the Web site, typically by getting them to click a link in an e-mail message or Instant Messenger message that takes users to the attacker's Web site, and then convincing them to open the specially crafted PowerPoint file.
The vulnerability cannot be exploited automatically through e-mail. For an attack to be successful a user must open an attachment that is sent in an e-mail message.
Users who have installed and are using the Office Document Open Confirmation Tool for Office 2000 will be prompted with Open, Save, or Cancel before opening a document. The features of the Office Document Open Confirmation Tool are incorporated in Office XP and later editions of Office.