Apple Inc. patched QuickTime late Wednesday to fix 11 flaws in the Mac and Windows versions of the media player. All but two of the bugs could be used by hackers to hijack users' machines.
QuickTIme 7.4.5 — the third security update Apple has released for the program so far in 2008 — plugs vulnerabilities in how the player handles Java and PICT image files, parses some data objects and uses Animation codec content, among others. Nine of the 11 bugs patched Wednesday were characterized by Apple as allowing "arbitrary code execution," a phrase the company uses to describe the most serious threats. Unlike vendors such as Microsoft Corp. and Oracle Corp., Apple doesn't rank the bugs it fixes with a scoring or labeling system.
Many of the vulnerabilities can be exploited if attackers are able to trick users into visiting malicious Web sites or open rigged files. Of those in the second category, Apple warned that some of the bugs could be triggered by malicious movie or PICT files. Mac users can upgrade to QuickTime 7.4.5 using the operating system's built-in Software Update feature, while Windows users can either download the new edition from the Apple site or use the optional Windows update tool.