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Microsoft Issues Security Pack for Office 2003

Microsoft has released a patch rollup known as a "service pack" for its Office 2003 software. Service Pack 2 fixes several security flaws, so if you're using Office 2003, open up Internet Explorer and visit Microsoft Update to download and install the package.

According to the advisory, the Office service pack also includes a new anti-phishing protection feature designed to work with Outlook's junk e-mail filters. I haven't played with that feature yet, but now I'm actually looking forward to getting my next phishing e-mail.

Be advised that if you have not upgraded from Windows Update to the new Microsoft Update (which includes a tiny piece of code that checks to see if you're running a pirated version of the operating system) you will first need to update your ... er ... updater.

If you visited Microsoft's update site and are running Office 2003 but don't see a service pack waiting to be installed after the site scans your PC, you should see a link at the bottom right corner of the update page that says "click here to install Microsoft Update" or something to that effect.

Alternatively, you can download the service pack and install it manually by visiting this link. I'm pretty sure you still have to participate in Microsoft's anti-piracy program to install that download, though.

By Brian Krebs  |  September 29, 2005; 3:25 PM ET
Categories:  New Patches  
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Comments

Well, the update disables links in Outlook e-mail messages, for one thing (unless I click the "Infobar"). That will curb phishing -- of course, it is a more of a pain to use e-mail.

Posted by: Jethro | September 29, 2005 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Dave | September 29, 2005 5:48 PM | Report abuse


I installed the Office 2003 patch and it slowed the program noticeably.

Posted by: Tafmon | September 29, 2005 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Those users who do not wish to upgrade their Windows Update to Microsoft Update can simply obtain the Office 2003 SP2 package from Office Update (www.microsoft.com/office, then hit Check for Updates). It's a far simpler, dedicated mechanism than using Microsoft Update.

Or alternatively, visit Windows Update, and click the Office Family update...

Posted by: Da Gopha | September 30, 2005 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Why all the concern about the piracy check? You hardly even notice it, and if you're a pirate, you shouldn't have any reason to expect free updates. Some of these articles give the impression that we should tolerate at least some degree of piracy. Nonsense. It may seem like a necessary evil in places like China (although some creative thinking can figure out a solution to that), but this isn't China.

Posted by: bluvg | September 30, 2005 10:38 AM | Report abuse

I downloaded the update. Not sure how it helps against phishing.

What I use is callingID. Its a great free download that warns me if I click on a suspicious email. It also gives me a physical address of every website I visit. That's cool. get it at download.com or callingid.com

Posted by: andrew | September 30, 2005 11:15 AM | Report abuse

I downloaded the update. Not sure how it helps against phishing.

What I use is callingID. Its a great free download that warns me if I click on a suspicious email. It also gives me a physical address of every website I visit. That's cool. get it at download.com or callingid.com

Posted by: andrew | September 30, 2005 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Bluvg, the problem with the piracy check is that it makes all the rest of us--who aren't pirates--less secure. As a user, I'm a lot less concerned about the price of the programs I buy being pushed up marginally to make up for the revenue lost to piracy than I am about all the unpatched copies of Windows and Office spreading around worms, viruses, and other nasties.

Posted by: Forrest | September 30, 2005 11:28 AM | Report abuse

I tried to install the downloaded patch on two differ computers, both legal, and it failed to install on either. Remedies offered by Microsoft have not solved the matter. I wonder about the experiences of others.

Posted by: F David Cotten | September 30, 2005 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Forrest... that line of reasoning just does not make sense. It implies that the only computers that could pose a threat of infection to your computer are those that use pirated software, and that you also don't patch your own machine. If those machines are infected because they miss a patch, but you've patched yours (as you should), then you have no worry about being infected by them. And even then, there will be non-pirated copies that would pose the same threat. I don't see how this should factor into the piracy debate. It's like saying "Well, we should allow thieves to steal from businesses, because it will prevent them from vandalizing homes." Nonsense.

Posted by: bluvg | September 30, 2005 3:37 PM | Report abuse

If you don't like the new feature just turn it off. Better yet, don't install it. While we are on the subject, if you don't like Microsoft software, don't use Windows or a computer for that matter. I guess that would take care of the piracy issue as well.

Posted by: Jim | September 30, 2005 6:07 PM | Report abuse

If you don't like the new feature just turn it off. Better yet, don't install it. While we are on the subject, if you don't like Microsoft software, don't use Windows or a computer for that matter. I guess that would take care of the piracy issue as well.

Posted by: Jim | September 30, 2005 6:08 PM | Report abuse

Thanx for the tip Andrew, I've found CallingID to be more useful then the current version of the Outlook patch and I also like the Phsyical Address feature.

Thank you Andrew (that rhymes!)

Posted by: Leo Perez | December 15, 2005 3:51 AM | Report abuse

Thank you Brian for the great collumns you've published and thank you Andrew for the excellent CallingID tip!

Posted by: Eira Giftash | February 26, 2006 4:58 AM | Report abuse

Very good site, congratulations! the xmen

Posted by: xmen | April 17, 2006 11:58 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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