Attackers are actively exploiting a previously unknown vulnerability in all supported versions of Internet Explorer that allows them to surreptitiously hijack vulnerable computers, Microsoft warned Sunday.
Microsoft showed off a number of its latest research projects at the Silicon Valley TechFair research fair in Mountain View on April 17.
Among the featured projects — some of which the company had touted previously, others not — were a couple of big data- and analytics-focused ones.
In response to customer outcry, organizations holding off on deploying the Windows 8.1 Update will be able to get security updates for their systems for another three and a half months, as opposed to the 30 days that Microsoft originally promised.
When the Windows 8.1 Update designed to improve the mouse and keyboard experience of Windows 8.1 was initially released last week, Microsoft said that it was a mandatory update. Any future security updates, starting from next month, would require the update to be installed.
Microsoft's demand that Windows 8.1 users install this week's major update was another signal that the company is very serious about forcing customers to adopt its faster release strategy, experts said today.
"Microsoft is going to drag organizations and users into this new world of faster updates kicking and screaming," said Michael Silver of Gartner in an email. "Microsoft wants users to trust it to keep their systems updated. Maybe they figure forcing organizations to deploy [Windows 8.1 Update] will get them used to taking updates and keeping current."
This month's "Patch Tuesday" includes the final round of security fixes Microsoft will issue for Windows XP, potentially leaving millions that continue to use the OS open to attack.