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Microsoft Launches New Security Blog

Patch Tuesday releases promise be a lot more interesting in 2008.

Patch Tuesday releases promise be a lot more interesting in 2008.

Or at least more comprehensive and transparent, as Microsoft said Thursday it launched a new "Security Vulnerability Research and Defense Blog," which Redmond said will offer a more granular look not only into each new patch but also into the vulnerabilities the patches are supposed to fix.

We expect to post every "patch Tuesday," Microsoft said in its inagural blog post on Thursday.

"During our vulnerability research, we discover a lot of interesting technical information. We're going to share as much of that information as possible here," said Jonathan Ness, a member of the security team and one of the regular bloggers on the new site.

Other bloggers include Lead Security Software Engineer Damian Hasse, and Greg Wroblewski, who handles the technical side of the security response process at Microsoft.

Microsoft hopes that by helping IT pros understand vulnerabilities, workarounds and mitigations, they will be better able to secure their own environments and improve patch management practices.

Redmond said its Security Response Team periodically identifies workarounds or mitigations that can't be used for official guidance "because they're either too nuanced or have some exception cases."

Thus when Microsoft discovers something potentially useful but isn't comfortable including such listings in its individual bulletins, the tidbits will turn up on this new blog.

Several security experts, who didn't want to be identified, see several purposes behind the blog. First, they view it as an effort on Microsoft's part to become more open about security. They also see the launch as Redmond's attempt to manage the patch release process from start to finish, hoping to avoid the sporadic instances in 2007 of Patch Tuesdays becoming "Exploit Wednesdays."

In that vein, the blog promises to be more like a technical guide for security admin than a destination for outright solutions. Because of the expected barrage of comments, the blog will launch with comments off to avoid posting those that are malicious or what the software giant deems "inappropriate."

About the Author

Jabulani Leffall is an award-winning journalist whose work has appeared in the Financial Times of London, Investor's Business Daily, The Economist and CFO Magazine, among others.

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