On one Tuesday out of every month, Microsoft releases a range of security updates for its Windows operating system. Generally, these updates are minor fixes that repair small security holes in Internet Explorer or Microsoft Excel.
But July’s ‘Patch Tuesday’ is going to be different: this coming Tuesday, Microsoft will release a whopping nine new security patches to Windows users, including a super-critical update for Internet Explorer 9. In fact, 3 of the 9 security updates are ranked as being ‘Critical’, while the other 6 are rated as ‘Important’.
The other security patches include updates for SharePoint, Office, Mac Office, and Internet Explorer.
One of the most surprising parts about this news is that Microsoft often refers to Internet Explorer 9 as the most secure version of IE ever built. It’s unknown exactly what the security patch will fix, and Microsoft doesn’t want to give out any more details than necessary, as it could inspire hackers to try to test the limits of IE9’s security.
Another patch being fixed with July’s Patch Tuesday is a serious flaw in Microsoft’s XML core services. Unlike the as-of-yet unspecified IE9 security flaw, the XML services security hole is currently being exploited by hackers. Microsoft says that Tuesday’s update will provide a permanent fix to the problem (a temporary fix was released last month). This issue has been undermining the efforts of IT security teams for months, so Tuesday will be an important day for PC users and network admins.
Look for these security updates to be delivered to your computer on Tuesday, July 10. Until then, hope and pray that hackers don’t discover the Internet Explorer 9 security hole (and other issues) before the patch is released.