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Windows Kernel Vulnerability Exploited in Attacks

December 11, 2018 / Eduard Kovacs

Microsoft’s Patch Tuesday updates for December 2018 address nearly 40 vulnerabilities, including a zero-day flaw affecting the Windows kernel. The actively exploited vulnerability, tracked as CVE-2018-8611, has been described by Microsoft as a privilege escalation issue related to the failure of the Windows kernel to properly handle objects in memory. “An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could run arbitrary code in kernel mode. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights,” Microsoft said in its advisory. Exploitation of the vulnerability requires access to the targeted system. The security hole impacts all supported versions of Windows. Microsoft has credited Kaspersky Lab researchers for reporting the vulnerability. The cybersecurity firm is expected to publish a report detailing the flaw and the attacks exploiting it.