Microsoft today provided its Patch Tuesday advanced notification, giving IT managers a head’s up about 16 bulletins that are scheduled to be delivered next week, including five rated critical for remote code execution and privilege escalation issues.
The heavy patch load is an anomaly for 2014, which has been relatively quiet. The last time Microsoft released anything approaching this many bulletins in one month was in September 2013.
“Next week will tell us how many CVEs are involved but suffice to say, this patch load will be a big impact to the enterprise,” said Russ Ernst, director at Lumension.
Expect another cumulative critical patch rollup for Internet Explorer and four critical bulletins others for Windows. Nine of the remaining bulletins are rated Important by Microsoft and two others Moderate.
Office software is in the crosshairs of the moderate bulletins. Microsoft said bulletins are on the way for Office 2007 SP3, Microsoft Word Viewer and Office Compatibility Pack SP 3.
Microsoft is also expected to patch vulnerabilities in Exchange Server 2007, 2010 and 2013, as well as the .NET development framework. None of those are rated critical, likely meaning an attacker would require local access in order to exploit the security issues.