Windows 10 is at risk from a critical bug that hackers are actively exploiting
Windows 10 and Windows 7 users should be aware of an important security warning issued by Microsoft. The Redmond-based tech giant warns that all versions of Windows are at risk from a vulnerability that hackers are currently actively exploiting. As reported by The Verge, the unpatched – and critical – issue is in the Windows Print Spooler service.
Called PrintNightmare, this bug allows attackers to remotely execute code with system-level privileges.
In terms of how dangerous bugs can be, that’s about as serious and dangerous as it gets.
The threat was discovered by cybersecurity researchers at Sangfor.
In the wake of the discovery of this threat, Microsoft has issued a security advisory.
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They said PrintNightmare has been exploited in the wild and Windows users should install security updates that were released in early June.
Microsoft said: “Microsoft is aware of and is investigating a remote code execution vulnerability affecting Windows Print Spooler and has assigned CVE-2021-34527 to this vulnerability. This is an evolving situation and we will update the Update CVE as more information becomes available.
“A remote code execution vulnerability exists when the Windows Print Spooler service improperly performs privileged file operations. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could execute arbitrary code with SYSTEM privileges. A attacker can then install programs, view, modify, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.”
The Windows developers added, “Make sure you have applied the security updates released on June 8, 2021, and see the FAQ and Workarounds sections in this CVE for information on how to protect your system from this vulnerability.”
Windows users are warned about an actively exploited threat
beeping computer reported that a separate threat analysis they saw for Microsoft 365 Defender customers said PrintNightmare was being actively exploited by attackers.
Unfortunately, while Microsoft advises Windows users to install the June 8 update, at the time of writing there is no specific patch available to address the zero-day.
Microsoft said they are working on a fix and are investigating the issue.
In the meantime, the makers of Windows 11 and Windows 10 have offered mitigation measures for the threat.
This includes disabling the Printer Spooler service and disabling inbound remote printing via Group Policy.
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