Beware of Elevated Privileges on Your Windows Computer

CVSScvssV3_1: 7.8

Microsoft Windows computers are commonly targeted by cybercriminals looking to gain elevated access without permission. A recent vulnerability, tracked as CVE-2023-36874, was found that could allow an attacker to do just that if exploited.

The vulnerability is in the Windows Error Reporting service, a tool that automatically sends reports to Microsoft when programs crash or have unhandled exceptions. By submitting a specially crafted error report, it may have been possible for an attacker to execute code with elevated SYSTEM privileges. This would give a hacker full control over the targeted computer.

It’s believed the vulnerability exists because of how the Error Reporting service validates and handles incoming data. By submitting unexpected or malformed input, an attacker could potentially manipulate the service into elevating their privileges. No other user interaction or authentication would be required.

The good news is Microsoft has addressed this issue with an update. It’s important all Windows users apply the latest patches to close this and other security holes. You should also use caution when opening attachments or links, as phishing remains a common way for cybercriminals to initially access systems. Having a robust antivirus is also wise.

By keeping your Windows installation up to date with the latest patches, being wary of suspicious email messages, and using antivirus software, you can help protect yourself from those seeking unauthorized access through elevation of privilege vulnerabilities. Stay vigilant to help keep your data and devices secure.