Microsoft To Issue New Security Patch

Microsoft of Redmond, Washington, is reportedly finalizing a far-ranging security patch for its Windows XP operating system.

The patch, to be known as Windows XP Service Pack 2, should be available some time this month.

Among its features, the service pack:

  • Introduces a Security Center where users can check the status of essential safety functions that notifies users of updates or actions needed to improve security;
  • Sets the firewall default to “on,” increases action warnings and more aggressively blocks Web browser pop-ups; and
  • Strengthens Internet programs by isolating potentially unsafe attachments and by making code-level changes to protect against malicious activity.

    “Consumers can expect a lot of changes,” said Joe Wilcox, a senior analyst at Jupiter Research. “Microsoft is putting a lot of security enhancements under the hood.”

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