Friday, July 9, 2021

PrintNightmare! *article for the more advanced user(s)*


Researchers at a security firm, has found a Windows vulnerability that affects the Windows Print Spooler service, and have labelled it PrintNightmare. This vulnerability allows hackers or those able to exploit this to remotely gain access to the operating system, and install programs, view and delete data, and even create new user accounts with full admin rights. 

Microsoft has released an update to patch this flaw, and is urging everyone to install this update immediately.  They have released updates for Windows 10, Windows 8, and even Windows 7 (for which support ended in 2020). Microsoft has released an update for several server versions as well.

The updates, labelled - July 6, 2021—KB5004945 (OS Builds 19041.1083, 19042.1083, and 19043.1083) Out-of-band & July 7, 2021— KB5005007 (OS Build 17784.1769) Out-of-Band in order to install these updates via Windows update service, make sure you have May 11, 2021—KB5003173 (OS Builds 19041.985, 19042.985, and 19043.985) installed first.  All these updates, should automatically be installed via Windows update, so you shouldn't have to worry about them. Only thing, is if you have automatic turned off, I'd suggest to turn it on, or do an update scan to get these. has some excellent articles on this topic, including great explanations for the flaw itself and the patches that have been released. They also provide many links as well to the various versions of the patch(es). article on Microsoft: PrintNightmare now patched on all Windows versions

Here's another good article, just detailing that the patch still has some flaws: Microsoft's incomplete PrintNightmare patch fails to fix vulnerability.

Although the majority of us "common" users :) , don't really have much to worry about with this vulnerability, as most end users are not common targets. The majority of targets here will be commercial and higher end companies that have a lot more to exploit than my little lenovo thinkpad. 

So, unless you are running a multi-million dollar, bitcoin mining farm, or the like in your basement and you have several printers set-up, I'd say you are pretty safe by just doing regular windows updates regularly. 

Stay Safe!


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