Users are advised by Microsoft to be more careful when opening suspicious PowerPoint documents in order to avoid becoming the target of hackers. Microsoft has lately admitted that hackers are exploiting a flaw which has yet been patched or fixed by the company to assault vulnerable systems. The flaw affects several Microsoft packages inclusive of Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2000, PowerPoint 2002 and PowerPoint 2003 for Windows and Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac. Other versions such as Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 and Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac are not affected.

Even though Microsoft claimed that it is aware only of limited and targeted attacks that attempt to exploit this vulnerability, security expert, McAfee, on the other has revealed that the company has discovered various attacks in the field exploiting the PowerPoint flaw to install Trojans into vulnerable systems. Hackers have crafted these exploits in an attempt to disguise malign actions. When users open the infected PowerPoint document (showfiles with .pps extension), the document will be opened in a full screen mode and hide the applications running on the desktop.

While Microsoft is swinging into action to investigate and fix the problem, users need to be more cautious especially when receiving files from unrecognized sources.

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