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Browser Hacking Contests 2011 and Internet Explorer 9 release

By DominicD
The annual hacking contest for security experts and professionals was held this week at Vancouver Canada. Dubbed as the “Pwn2Own” contest, professional hackers and security gurus teamed up to test the security of popular browsers.

First hack victim: Apple Safari
A fully patched MacBook Pro running Safari with the latest updates was the first machine to get hacked. Apparently, the hacking team performed the hack by browsing to a compromised website that pushed the hacking code to the browser. With the hacking code penetrating the browser, the hackers were able to remotely control the MacBook Pro – launching the calculator program, and even creating a new file into the documents folder.

Second hack victim: Internet Explorer 8
While the MacBook Pro and Safari took the first place to being hacked, a machine running Windows 7 SP1 and Internet Explorer 8 with the latest updates, also fell to another team of security hackers. By using the method of triggering the hack code through a website, the machine was exploited and controlled to launch the windows calculator.

A few days before the Pwn2Own Hacking Contest, software manufacturers released last minute security updates to their browsers. Apple, Microsoft, Google and Firefox have both released security fixes. While the patches seemed to have failed for Safari and IE, a security fix for the type of attacked performed on Pwn2Own was immediately distributed by Apple and Microsoft.


Internet Explorer 9 Release on March 14, 2011

Internet Explorer 9 is officially launching on March 14, 2011. Security updates (definitely that of protection for the recent Pwn2Own hack event) and browser enhancements on Internet Explorer will be made through IE9.

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