McAfee due to patch spam relay problem in cloud product

The flaw in McAfee's SaaS for Total Protection can be used by attackers to send spam from victims' computers

McAfee expects to patch by Thursday two problems with its SaaS Total Protection antimalware service, one of which lets an attacker use a computer as a spam relay.

SaaS Total Protection is a hosted security service from Intel-owned McAfee. Clients sign up for the service, which provides features such as a firewall, antivirus scans and antispam services that run in McAfee's data centers.

One of the issues allows spammers to "bounce off" affected machines and allow the relaying of spam, Dave Marcus, director of security research for McAfee, wrote on Wednesday.

The problem came to light when some users reported their service providers had blocked their IP address after noticing an uptick in unsolicited email streaming from their computers.

The vulnerability can be exploited by misusing McAfee's "Rumor," a peer-to-peer file sharing technology the company developed to distribute security updates within an internal network. The spam-related problem does not, however, allow an attacker to gain access to data on the computer, Marcus wrote.

The other issue involves abuse of an ActiveX control, which is a small add-on program that works in a Web browser to facilitate the downloading of programs or security updates.

Marcus did not elaborate further on the problem but wrote that it "has much in common with a similar issue patched in August 2011. In fact, the patch delivered then basically cuts off the exploitation path for this issue, effectively reducing the risk to zero. Because of this, customer data is not directly at risk."

Patches should be ready following testing by Thursday, Marcus wrote. McAfee customers using SaaS Total Protection will automatically receive the updates.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?