Outlook updated for antivirus security
- By Cameron Crouch
- Jun 09, 2000
Microsoft's Outlook patch
A security update to Microsoft Corp.'s Outlook blocks executable attachments
and warns you when programs try to access your address book or send mail
on your behalf.
Microsoft has posted the code on its World Wide Web site, following several
delays after the company announced the security update in May — around the
time the "love bug" virus broke out.
Microsoft has weathered criticism regarding Outlook's role in the recent
spate of viruses. This update specifically fights the ways the Melissa and
love bug worms spread.
"The update limits users from opening certain types of attachments that
run executable code," said Lisa Gurry, product manager for Microsoft Office.
It also warns you when programs try to access your address book or send
mail on your behalf, she said. For example, instead of receiving the VBS
executable file that spread the love bug, you would get a note that says
"Outlook removed access to the following unsafe attachments."
The update warns you when a program such as the love bug tries to send itself
to everyone in your address book. Its message is: "An external application
is trying to access the e-mail address book stored in Outlook, do you want
this?" If you say no, Outlook halts the program's action, Gurry said.
Because some companies might need to send executable files, you can customize
the security update if you have server-side security, Gurry said. "You could
add or remove different file attachments from the list of those which can't
be accessed," she said.
—Article distributed by IDG News Service.