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Attention: Important Information For All XP Users
Ever since its release, Windows XP has contained a critical flaw that could be trivially exploited at any time by any malicious hacker. By causing any Windows XP system to process a specially-formed URL (web-style link), the XP system would obediently delete all or most of the files within any specified directory. (That's not good.)
This flaw is considered critical because these malicious URLs could be delivered to any XP user through any means: via an eMail solicitation, a chat room, a newsgroup posting, a malicious web page, or even processed automatically without the user clicking anything by merely visiting a malicious web page. (That's bad.)
Curiously, Microsoft was informed of this easily-demonstrated, quite significant, and trivial-to-fix, Windows XP defect back in June of 2002, but chose not to proactively address the significant vulnerability created for their users until the September 9th, 2002, release of Windows XP's first service pack.
Since Windows XP Service Pack 1 repairs many more security, stability, and compatibility problems than just this critical exploit, Service Pack 1 should be applied as soon as possible.