Microsoft Powerpoint Remote Code Execution Vulnerability

ID SMNTC-19341
Type symantec
Reporter Symantec Security Response
Modified 2006-08-08T00:00:00



Microsoft PowerPoint is prone to a remote code-execution vulnerability. This issue occurs when the application handles malformed record data within a presentation file. A successful exploit of this issue will let attackers execute arbitrary code in the context of the targeted user.

Technologies Affected

  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2000 SP3
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2002 SP3
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2003 SP1
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2003 SP2
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2004 for Mac


Run all software as a nonprivileged user with minimal access rights.
All non-administrative tasks should be performed as an unprivileged user with minimal access rights.

Deploy network intrusion detection systems to monitor network traffic for malicious activity.
Deploy NIDS to monitor network traffic for signs of suspicious or anomalous activity. This may help detect malicious actions that an attacker may take after successfully exploiting vulnerabilities in applications. Review all applicable logs regularly.

Do not accept or execute files from untrusted or unknown sources.
Users should never accept files from untrusted or unknown sources, because they may be malicious in nature. Avoid opening email attachments from unknown or questionable sources.

Do not follow links provided by unknown or untrusted sources.
Users should avoid websites of questionable integrity. Never follow links supplied by unknown or untrusted sources.

Implement multiple redundant layers of security.
Since this issue may be leveraged to execute code, we recommend memory-protection schemes, such as non-executable stack/heap configurations and randomly mapped memory segments. This tactic may complicate exploits of memory-corruption vulnerabilities.

Microsoft has released a security bulletin to address this issue. Please see the attached security bulletin for details on obtaining fixes.