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Java Bug Makes IE, Firefox Vulnerable

A flaw in Sun's Java Virtual Machine can open up the two most popular browsers, Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Mozilla's Firefox, to attack, security researchers said Tuesday.

According to Reston, Vir.-based iDefense and Danish security vendor Secunia, the bug in Java 2 Runtime Environment (JRE), Standard Edition could let attackers bypass the Java security "sandbox" and all security restrictions within Java applets on Web sites.

JRE is the plug-in software that establishes a connection between the browser and the Java platform, and makes it possible for Web browsers to run Java applets stashed on Web sites.

Hackers using the exploit could essentially can complete control of the compromised computer, said iDefense, letting them "access, download, upload, or execute files as well as access the network."

iDefense confirmed that the vulnerability exists on J2SE 1.4.2_01 and 1.4.2_04, and may also be within earlier versions as well.

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