Microsoft Excel Malformed Object Remote Memory Corruption Vulnerability

ID SMNTC-34413
Type symantec
Reporter Symantec Security Response
Modified 2009-04-14T00:00:00



Microsoft Excel is prone to a memory-corruption vulnerability. Attackers may exploit this issue by enticing victims into opening a maliciously crafted Excel file. Successful exploits may allow attackers to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the user running the application.

Technologies Affected

  • Microsoft Excel 2000 SP3
  • Microsoft Excel 2002 SP3
  • Microsoft Excel 2003 SP3
  • Microsoft Excel 2007
  • Microsoft Excel 2007 SP1
  • Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac
  • Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac
  • Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack 2007
  • Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack 2007 SP1
  • Microsoft Office Excel Viewer 2003
  • Microsoft Office Excel Viewer 2003 SP3
  • Microsoft Office Excel Viewer


Run all software as a nonprivileged user with minimal access rights.
To reduce the impact of latent vulnerabilities, always run nonadministrative software as an unprivileged user with minimal access rights.

Do not accept or execute files from untrusted or unknown sources.
To reduce the likelihood of successful exploits, never handle files that originate from unfamiliar or untrusted sources.

Do not follow links provided by unknown or untrusted sources.
Web users should be cautious about following links to sites that are provided by unfamiliar or suspicious sources. Filtering HTML from emails may help remove a possible vector for transmitting malicious links to users.

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

Microsoft has released a security bulletin along with fixes. Please see the references for more information.