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10.29.2013 - New cybersecurity report from Microsoft details risks of running unsupported software



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REDMOND, Wash. Oct. 29, 2013 On Tuesday, Microsoft Corp. released its Security Intelligence Report volume 15, which analyzes threat intelligence from more than 1 billion systems worldwide to provide in-depth perspectives on exploits, vulnerabilities and malware to help customers manage risk. Among other intelligence, the report examines the security risk that consumers and businesses face when using unsupported operating systems and software and looks at the implications of using Windows XP once support, including security updates, ends April 8, 2014. In addition, new telemetry compares the security of modern operating systems such as Windows 8 with older operating systems such as Windows XP that, according to StatCounter, make up approximately 21 percent of operating systems used today.

The report found these top three worldwide threats for those running Windows XP:

  • Sality. Malware family that can steal personal information and lower a PC’s security settings.

  • Ramnit. Malware that infects Windows executable files, Microsoft Office files and HTML files.

  • Vobfus. Family of worms that can download other malware onto a PC; it can be downloaded by other malware or spread via removable drives, such as USB flash drives.

The report found that in the first half of 2013, nearly 17 percent of computers worldwide running up-to-date, real-time security products from Microsoft encountered malware. Although Windows 8 encountered a similar amount of malware as Windows XP, computers running Windows XP were six times more likely to actually be infected with those threats.

“The data help illustrate the positive impact that security innovations in newer operating systems are having. Modern operating systems such as Windows 8 include advanced security technologies that are specifically designed to make it harder, more complex, more expensive and, therefore, less appealing for cybercriminals to exploit vulnerabilities,” said Tim Rains, director of Microsoft Trustworthy Computing.

Rains added that once security updates for Windows XP stop on April 8, 2014, security risks associated with continuing to use the outdated software will increase as cybercriminals seek to exploit newly discovered vulnerabilities. The last version of Windows XP to go out of support was Service Pack 2. In the two years following, malware infections jumped 66 percent when compared with Windows XP SP3, the version for which support ends next year.

“The importance of upgrading from Windows XP cannot be overstated,” Rains said. “We truly want people to understand the risks of running Windows XP after support ends and to recognize the security benefits of upgrading to a more modern operating system — one that includes the latest in security innovations, provides ongoing support and can in turn better protect them.”

Those wanting to download and learn more about the Microsoft Security Intelligence Report findings should visit http://www.microsoft.com/sir.

Microsoft releases its Security Intelligence Report twice a year to inform the public about the most prevalent global and regional threats so they can better protect themselves and their organizations. Volume 15 of the report includes new data from the first half of 2013.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.25.2013 - test the time displaying



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10.24.2013 - Microsoft reports record first-quarter revenue of $18.53 billion



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REDMOND, Wash. — October 24, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. today announced revenue of $18.53 billion for the quarter ended September 30, 2013. Gross margin, operating income, net income, and diluted earnings per share for the quarter were $13.42 billion, $6.33 billion, $5.24 billion, and $0.62 per share.

These financial results reflect the deferral of $113 million of revenue primarily related to Windows 8.1 Pre-sales. All growth comparisons in the press release relate to the corresponding period in the last fiscal year, unless otherwise noted.

The following table reconciles these financial results reported in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) to non-GAAP financial results. We have provided this non-GAAP financial information to aid investors in better understanding the company’s performance.



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“Our devices and services transformation is progressing and we are launching a wide range of compelling products and experiences this fall for both business and consumers,” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “Our new commercial services will help us continue to outgrow the enterprise market, and we are seeing lots of consumer excitement for Xbox One, Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, and the full spectrum of Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone devices.”

“We saw strong focus across our teams, generating record first-quarter revenue even as we navigate a fundamental business transition. Our enterprise renewals were very healthy and our devices and consumer business continued to improve,” said Amy Hood, chief financial officer at Microsoft. “We are making strategic investments in areas like technological innovation, supply chain management, and global cloud operations to build for the future and create long-term shareholder value.”

Devices and Consumer revenue grew 4% to $7.46 billion.

  • Windows OEM revenue declined 7%; Windows Pro revenue grew for the second consecutive quarter.

  • Surface revenue grew to $400 million with sequential growth in revenue and units sold over the prior quarter.

  • Search advertising revenue grew 47% driven by an increase in revenue per search and volume.

Commercial revenue grew 10% to $11.20 billion.

  • SQL Server revenue grew double-digits, with SQL Server Premium revenue growing more than 30%.

  • Lync, SharePoint, and Exchange, our productivity server offerings, collectively grew double-digits.

  • Commercial cloud revenue grew 103%.

“We continue to execute well across our businesses and we are seeing robust demand for our enterprise products and cloud services. Strong customer adoption of Office 365, Azure, and Dynamics CRM Online is accelerating our business transition to the cloud,” said Kevin Turner, chief operating officer at Microsoft. “Our investments in SQL database platform, Hyper-V, System Center, and Lync are driving market share gains as these comprehensive solutions enable customers to increase their insight and efficiency.”

Business Outlook

Microsoft will provide forward-looking guidance in connection with this quarterly earnings announcement on its earnings conference call and webcast detailed below.

Webcast Details

Amy Hood, executive vice president and chief financial officer, Frank Brod, chief accounting officer, and Chris Suh, general manager of Investor Relations, will host a conference call and webcast at 2:30 p.m. PDT (5:30 p.m. EDT) today to discuss details of the company’s performance for the quarter and certain forward-looking information. The session may be accessed at http://www.microsoft.com/investor/. The webcast will be available for replay through the close of business on October 24, 2014.

Adjusted Financial Results and Non-GAAP Measures

For the first quarter of fiscal year 2014, GAAP revenue, operating income, and diluted earnings per share included the deferral of $113 million of revenue primarily related to Windows 8.1 Pre-sales. During the first quarter of fiscal year 2013, GAAP revenue, operating income, and diluted earnings per share included the deferral of $1.4 billion of revenue related to the Windows Upgrade Offer, Windows 8 Pre-sales, and Office Offer. These items are defined below. In addition to these financial results reported in accordance with GAAP, we have provided certain non-GAAP financial information to aid investors in better understanding the company’s performance. Presenting these measures without the impact of these items gives additional insight into operational performance and helps clarify trends affecting the company’s business. For comparability of reporting, management considers this information in conjunction with GAAP amounts in evaluating business performance. These non-GAAP financial measures should not be considered as a substitute for, or superior to, the measures of financial performance prepared in accordance with GAAP.

Non-GAAP Definitions

Revenue deferred on Pre-sales of Windows 8.1 to original equipment manufacturers and retailers before general availability (“Windows 8.1 Pre-sales”).

Revenue deferred on sales of Windows 7 with an option to upgrade to Windows 8 Pro at a discounted price (the “Windows Upgrade Offer”) and Pre-sales of Windows 8 to OEMs and retailers before general availability.

Revenue deferred on sales of the previous version of the Microsoft Office system, with a guarantee to be upgraded to the new Office at minimal or no cost (the “Office Upgrade Offer”) and Pre-sales of the new Office to OEMs and retailers before general availability (collectively, the “Office Offer”).

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Forward-Looking Statements

Statements in this release that are “forward-looking statements” are based on current expectations and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially because of factors such as:

  • intense competition in all of Microsoft’s markets;

  • increasing focus on services presents execution and competitive risks;

  • significant investments in new products and services that may not be profitable;

  • acquisitions, joint ventures, and strategic alliances, including our acquisition of Nokia’s Devices and Services business, may have an adverse effect on our business;

  • Microsoft’s continued ability to protect its intellectual property rights;

  • claims that Microsoft has infringed the intellectual property rights of others;

  • the possibility of unauthorized disclosure of significant portions of Microsoft’s source code;

  • cyber-attacks and security vulnerabilities in Microsoft products that could reduce revenue or lead to liability;

  • improper disclosure of personal data that could result in liability and harm to Microsoft’s reputation;

  • outages, data losses, and disruptions of our online services if we fail to maintain an adequate operations infrastructure;

  • government litigation and regulation that may limit how Microsoft designs and markets its products;

  • Microsoft’s ability to attract and retain talented employees;

  • delays in product development and related product release schedules;

  • adverse economic or market conditions my harm our business;

  • adverse results in legal disputes;

  • unanticipated tax liabilities;

  • our hardware and software products may experience quality or supply problems;

  • impairment of goodwill or amortizable intangible assets causing a charge to earnings;

  • exposure to increased economic and regulatory uncertainties from operating a global business; and

  • catastrophic events or geo-political conditions may disrupt our business.

For further information regarding risks and uncertainties associated with Microsoft’s business, please refer to the “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and “Risk Factors” sections of Microsoft’s SEC filings, including, but not limited to, its annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, copies of which may be obtained by contacting Microsoft’s Investor Relations department at (800) 285-7772 or at Microsoft’s Investor Relations website at http://www.microsoft.com/investor/.

All information in this release is as of October 24, 2013. The company undertakes no duty to update any forward-looking statement to conform the statement to actual results or changes in the company’s expectations.

For more information, financial analysts and investors only:

Chris Suh, general manager, Investor Relations, (425) 706-4400

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news/. Web links, telephone numbers, and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. Shareholder and financial information, as well as today’s 2:30 p.m. PDT conference call with investors and analysts, is available at http://www.microsoft.com/investor/.

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10.24.2013 - Microsoft enters into cooperation agreements to accelerate African innovation



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NAIROBI , Kenya Oct . 2 4 , 2013 — While attending DEMO Africa, Microsoft Corp. on Thursday announced strategic cooperation agreements with three incubator organizations across the African continent to enable startups, innovators and Africa’s developer community to grow their skills and build businesses with Microsoft technologies. Under the recently launched Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative, Microsoft has entered into agreements with CcHUB in Nigeria, DTBi in Tanzania and AfriLabs, the pan-African hub network.

The cooperation aims to offer the communities working in these hubs increased access to software, skills development opportunities and a means through which innovative startups can access capital investment, benefit from international outreach and scale their businesses to the world through Microsoft’s cloud computing solutions.

The Co-Creation Hub, or CcHUB as it is commonly known, is Nigeria’s first innovation lab and pre-incubation space designed to catalyze creative social technology ventures. It is a place for technologists, social entrepreneurs, government and investors in and around Lagos to co-create new solutions to address business opportunities and social needs in Nigeria.

The Dar Teknohama Business Incubator, commonly known as DTBi, is a registered and autonomous entity established by the Tanzanian Commission for Science and Technology to promote information and communication technology (ICT) innovation and entrepreneurship, contributing to job creation and enhanced economic health in Tanzania.

AfriLabs is a network organization that connects incubator hubs across the continent in order to promote the growth and development of the African technology sector. AfriLabs has 20 member organizations in Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Uganda and Zambia.

Microsoft will work with each organization to:

  • Support the startup community with Microsoft BizSpark memberships and access to business networking and capital investment opportunities. BizSpark is a global program that helps startups grow into successful businesses through software support and a vibrant ecosystem that delivers exceptional business advantage.

  • Enable developers to access the latest events and workshops on Microsoft’s newest development technologies through relevant community events.

  • Provide Microsoft devices, including Windows Phones and Windows-based tablets, for testing applications and other software developed by the local IT communities.

  • Enable them to benefit from the 4Afrika Internship program, which will provide them access to the pool of talent graduating as 4Afrika interns as potential hires for their own facilities.

  • Enable them to benefit from the 4Afrika Volunteer program, which will provide them with access to the pool of Microsoft employees volunteering in Africa as visiting trainers and mentors at their own facilities.

In addition, the partnership with AfriLabs will support the development of sustainable and scalable working environments across the continent, such as technology hubs and incubation centers, to stimulate entrepreneurship and support African startups. Microsoft will work with AfriLabs to help startups working in these hubs become successful technology companies driving innovation, employability, competitiveness and growth in Africa.

Mteto Nyati, vice chair of the 4Afrika Advisory Council and managing director of Microsoft South Africa, will speak at DEMO Africa this week. In advance of the event, he said, “Microsoft sees boundless potential in African youth, developers and entrepreneurs, and we view the collaborative efforts with these innovation hubs across the continent as strategic and crucial opportunities for us to extend our support to their ecosystems. Through the 4Afrika Initiative, we are deeply committed to helping accelerate African innovation, and we hope these efforts will help us reach more people who are looking to turn their great ideas into a reality that can empower their community, their country and Africa at large.”

The Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative is designed to help Africa improve its global competitiveness. By 2016, various 4Afrika efforts spanning the continent, such as these new collaborations, will help place tens of millions of smart devices in the hands of African youth, bring 1 million African small and medium-size enterprises online, upskill 100,000 members of Africa’s existing workforce, and help an additional 100,000 recent graduates develop skills for employability, 75 percent of which Microsoft will help place in jobs.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.


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10.21.2013 - Surface 2, Surface Pro 2 and new accessories available for purchase



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REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 21, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. on Tuesday announced that its newest Surface models — Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 — as well as an expanded portfolio of new Surface accessories are now available for purchase at Microsoft retail stores, http://www.microsoftstore.com, select third-party retailers and authorized commercial resellers in 21 initial markets, including Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States. The new Surface products will be available in China in early November.

Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 are the most productive tablets on the planet, and they each benefit from significant updates, including improvements to processing power and battery life, display and camera resolution, and the kickstand — now featuring a second, wider angle so it’s more comfortable to use Surface on your lap or at your desk. Enhancements in Windows 8.1 RT and Windows 8.1 Pro make Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 even more powerful and customizable.

Knowledgeable staff are on hand at all Microsoft retail store locations to answer questions and help with Surface setup, so customers have a great out-of-box experience and walk out the door with a product that is personalized for them. Customers can visit http://www.microsoftstore.com to find a Microsoft retail store nearest them.

Each new Surface comes with built-in value

To help people get the most out of Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, customers who purchase either device will receive free Skype calling to landlines in more than 60 countries for one year, unlimited Skype Wi-Fi on their Surface 2 or Surface Pro 2 at more than 2 million hotspots worldwide for one year, and 200 GB of free SkyDrive storage for two years.[1]

Surface 2

Surface 2 is the most productive tablet for personal use. It offers all the entertainment and gaming capabilities you expect from a tablet, along with the ability to get work done. Surface 2 is powered by an NVIDIA Tegra 4 processor, making apps run faster and smoother and increasing battery life to up to 10 hours for video playback. The 10.6-inch ClearType Full HD display now renders 1080p video for enjoying shows and movies, and its full-size USB port has been upgraded to USB 3.0 for up to four times faster file transfers. Camera resolution has also increased, with a 3.5-megapixel front camera and 5-megapixel rear camera, both capable of capturing 1080p video and featuring improved low-light performance, making face-to-face conversations with your favorite people crisp and clear. Even with these and other upgrades, Surface 2 is slightly thinner and lighter than its predecessor.

Surface 2 ships with Windows 8.1 RT, bringing improvements in key areas, such as personalization, search, multitasking, built-in apps, the Windows Store experience and cloud connectivity. The new Xbox Music allows you to stream millions of songs for free, and an updated Video app and great games from the Windows Store such as “Halo: Spartan Assault” will help ensure you never run out of ways to play. When it’s time to get serious, Surface 2 is preloaded with Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT and Outlook 2013 RT; simply click in a Touch or Type Cover and get to work.

Surface 2 is available in 32GB and 64GB configurations2 and starts at $449.

Surface Pro 2

Surface Pro 2 is the successor to Surface Pro and, like its predecessor, is a true laptop replacement, capable of running virtually all your Windows software, including the full Microsoft Office suite[3] and apps from the Windows Store. Surface Pro 2 offers the portability and simplicity of a tablet when you want it and the power and flexibility of a laptop when you need it. It is powered by a fourth-generation Intel Core i5 processor that, combined with other improvements, delivers increased performance and up to 75 percent longer battery life than Surface Pro. Starting at $899, Surface Pro 2 is offered in 64GB and 128GB configurations with 4 GB of RAM and in 256GB and 512GB configurations with 8 GB of RAM.[2] Full specs are available at http://www.Surface.com.

New accessories

Microsoft also released seven new accessories that will make Surface even more flexible, more portable and more productive:

• Touch Cover 2. Thinner and lighter than the original Touch Cover and measuring just 2.75 millimeters thin, Touch Cover 2 features backlit keys for even better readability. Touch Cover 2 is more rigid, registers keystrokes with greater accuracy and features updated sensors that support a variety of gestures across the keyboard. Touch Cover 2 is available Tuesday for an estimated retail price of $119.99.

• Type Cover 2. Type Cover 2 features the same superthin, lightweight design of the original Type Cover, but it’s now backlit and available in Cyan, Magenta, Purple and Black. It’s also more rigid, providing a better lap-typing experience, and it was designed to be noticeably quieter when striking the keys. Type Cover 2 is available Tuesday for an estimated retail price of $129.99.

• Power Cover. Power Cover delivers the same great typing experience you get with Type Cover but adds up to 50 percent additional battery life to your Surface 2, Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2 to help you make it through that late-night meeting or an international day of travel. Power Cover will have an estimated retail price of $199.99 and has a projected release date of early 2014.

• Docking Station for Surface Pro. The Docking Station for Surface Pro lets you quickly connect Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2 to desktop PC peripherals in a single step, taking you from laptop to desktop in an instant. While Surface Pro or Surface Pro 2 is docked, it can connect with up to two 4K external monitors, Ethernet, speakers and power supply. PC peripherals connect via its one USB 3.0 port and three USB 2.0 ports. The Docking Station for Surface Pro will have an estimated retail price of $199.99 and has a projected release date of early 2014.

• Wireless Adapter for Typing Covers. The Wireless Adapter for Typing Covers connects magnetically to any Touch or Type Cover, letting you type from anywhere in the room using Bluetooth technology, so it is even easier to connect Surface to a TV or monitor[4] and type from another location, such as the couch. Wireless Adapter for Typing Covers is available Tuesday for an estimated retail price of $59.99.

• Car Charger with USB. Car Charger plugs into most cars’ power or lighter ports and charges Surface without the need for an additional adapter. It also features a USB port to allow simultaneous charging of a phone or other device. Car Charger will have an estimated retail price of $49.99 and has a projected release date of early 2014.

• Arc Touch Mouse Surface Edition. This special-edition Arc Touch Mouse has been updated to match the look of Surface. Like other Arc Touch mice, it is designed for comfort and flattens for portability. It connects via Bluetooth 3.0, freeing Surface’s USB port for use by other devices. Arc Touch Mouse Surface Edition is available in the U.S. and Canada Tuesday for an estimated retail price of $69.99. Distribution in additional markets is projected to begin in the coming months. More information on Surface and the new accessories is available at http://www.Surface.com.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

The information contained in this press release relates to pre-release software products that may be substantially modified before their first commercial release. Accordingly, the information may not accurately describe or reflect the software products when first commercially released. The press release is provided for informational purposes only, and Microsoft makes no warranties, express or implied, with respect to the press release or the information contained in it.

[1] Skype offer not available in China. Internet access fees may apply. Skype offer excludes calls to special, premium and non-geographic numbers. A fair usage policy and Skype’s Terms of Use apply; see http://www.skype.com/surface for details. For Skydrive offer terms and conditions, see http://www.skydrive.com/surface.

[2] System software uses significant storage space. Available storage is subject to change based on system software updates and apps usage. 1 GB = 1 billion bytes. See http://www.Surface.com/storage for more details. Initial quantities of Surface Pro 2 with 512 GB will be limited.

[3] Office sold separately.

[4] Adapter required and sold separately.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.21.2013 - New Microsoft Dynamics CRM release adds social capabilities to enable amazing customer experiences



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REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 21, 2013 — With the new release of Microsoft Dynamics CRM now available worldwide, Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq “MSFT”) on Monday announced a strategic alliance with InsideView Inc. that brings new Social Insights to the cloud-based Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online service. Microsoft on Monday also announced the availability at the end of the month of a new set of industry-focused business process templates as part of the new Microsoft Dynamics CRM release, delivering customers step-by-step process guidelines designed to improve performance in specific industries.

The new solution, which is now available online in 42 global markets, will be available for on-premises and partner-hosted deployments on Oct. 31. It is designed to offer customers an enhanced user experience that promotes end-user productivity and demonstrates the better together value of Microsoft technologies. This includes interoperability with Yammer, Lync and Skype — delivering sales, service, marketing and industry professionals a seamless and customizable experience.

“CRM today should be an enabler that detects trends, facilitates decisions and suggests actions that lead to successful outcomes and relationships,” said Bob Stutz, corporate vice president of Microsoft Dynamics CRM. “This major new release delivers on this promise of customer centricity by bringing together Microsoft technologies in a way that helps businesses and organizations better engage and nurture their customers.”

New social insights

The first phase of the Microsoft Dynamics CRM alliance with InsideView, a leading social intelligence provider, is the introduction of Social Insights capabilities embedded into Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online. Social Insights puts real-time company and contact information from 30,000 sources into Microsoft Dynamics CRM, helping marketing, sales and account management professionals engage more effectively with prospects to win more deals as a result of less time spent researching and more time selling. Social Insights will be available at no additional cost to Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online customers in the United States with Professional licenses on Oct. 30, 2013, with broader global rollout coming later in 2014.

New industry templates

The new Microsoft Dynamics CRM release offers customers pre-defined and configurable processes where each stage of a process is clearly outlined, identifying the recommended steps to completion. Building on this design element, Microsoft is introducing new templates for a number of specific industries, such as professional services, manufacturing and financial services, as well as processes for event management and solution selling. These completely configurable business processes incorporate best practices from industry experts and give customers a starting point to build a solution to fulfill their specific industry requirements. In addition, these templates flow onto all mobile devices supported by Microsoft Dynamics CRM, meaning customers can get the benefits of these processes on their favorite supported mobile device. These templates will be available for customers to download at no charge by the end of October 2013.

Designed to help customers match, engage and nurture customer relationships

In addition, the new Microsoft Dynamics CRM features new capabilities to enable sales, marketing and customer care professionals to match customers and prospects to the products and services they want, engage customers at the right moment, and nurture customer relationships.

These personal experiences are delivered through the following:

• A beautiful, new people-first design that offers a simple and immersive layout where all customer information is on one screen, helping people easily see everything they need to know about their customer interactions in one place.

• A new outcome-driven user experience featuring guided processes that help customers reach their desired outcomes. These processes can be tailored to accommodate particular business requirements that enable people to deliver an experience that matches their customers’ expectations. The benefits to organizations include shorter sales cycles, increased win rates and less ramp-up time for new hires.

• The ability to stay pervasively connected to customers and resources by putting social tools in the context of what people are doing. With Yammer, customers can quickly comment on posts or start contextual conversations from within Microsoft Dynamics CRM on-premises and online. Yammer extends across an organization, bringing everyone into the conversation, including nonlicensed CRM customers from within Yammer.

With the new Microsoft Dynamics CRM release, customers get access to new mobile client applications on Windows 8 tablets and iPads, as well as touch-enabled experiences on Windows Phones, iPhones and Android phones coming within the next month, giving customers powerful functionality and analytics on the go, without a separate license fee. These new tablet experiences keep people connected to their data, their team members and, most important, their customers, allowing subject-matter experts to be a click away.*

Over the past few months, Microsoft partners from 48 countries participated in the most highly subscribed-to release preview program to date for Microsoft Dynamics CRM and provided feedback on the new release. Select participants and their stories will be featured in a Global Premiere Event scheduled for Nov. 4, which will stream live at http://aka.ms/dynamicsglobalpremiere. More about the new Microsoft Dynamics CRM release can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics/crm.aspx.

For more information on Microsoft Dynamics CRM Social Insights integration, a news release from InsideView is available at http://www.insideview.com/press/insideview-and-microsoft-raise-bar-crm-sign-strategic-oem-agreement-integrate-insideview-sales. Those interested can follow and engage with the Microsoft Dynamics CRM community on Twitter at @MSDynamicsCRM, hashtag #MSDynCRM and #CRM2013, and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/msftdynamics.

About Microsoft Dynamics

At the heart of every successful business are the people who make things happen. Microsoft Dynamics designs modern business solutions that empower individuals with intuitive tools that allow them to do their best work. Our proactive, easy-to-use business applications adapt to the way people and systems work, enabling businesses to rapidly deploy and be forward-looking in an ever-changing world.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

* Some functionality requires Wi-Fi, Internet connection or mobile data plan (fees may apply).

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.21.2013 - MetLife puts customers first through the power of Office 365



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REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 21, 2013 — MetLife Inc., a leading provider of insurance, annuities and employee benefit programs serving more than 90 million customers, has selected Microsoft Office 365 to offset the challenges that can accompany a rapidly expanding global workforce and the company’s global presence. MetLife has begun deployment to its 64,000 employees and expects to have Office 365 fully implemented by November.

“As we expand our global presence, we had to start thinking differently about how to get things done more quickly while still putting our customers first. This absolutely affected the way we evaluated our previous technology investments,” said Jim O’Donnell, senior vice president and chief technology officer, MetLife. “As a whole, the insurance industry can be challenging for consumers to navigate, so getting all of our global employees onto one standardized platform helps us collaborate more effectively and efficiently. In turn, we can ensure the customer experience is as smooth and consistent as possible.”

The move to Office 365 will allow MetLife to reinvest cost savings into mission-critical technologies, which will enable MetLife to further strengthen its focus on customer-centricity. In an increasingly competitive industry, the ability to strongly differentiate the brand as customer-centric will help MetLife face competition from other insurance companies head-on.

“The opportunity to take advantage of Outlook and the other tools included in the Office 365 suite will ultimately help us mitigate the time and distance factors that can be detrimental to customer service. Office 365 supports and enables our strategy of customer-centricity,” O’Donnell said.

More information about how organizations are turning to Microsoft technology is available on the Microsoft Customer Spotlight newsroom.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.17.2013 - Windows 8.1 is available now



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REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 17, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. on Thursday announced the global availability of Windows 8.1, a feature-rich update to its popular Windows 8 operating system, enabling customers to create experiences that keep pace with their lives — at work, at home or on the go. Beginning Oct. 17, consumers with a Windows 8 device in more than 230 markets and 37 languages can download the free update via the online Windows Store. Windows 8.1 will also be available on new devices and as boxed software starting Oct. 18 at retail locations around the world.

Windows 8.1 evolves the Windows vision for highly personalized computing while showcasing Microsoft’s continued commitment to rapid and responsive development. It marks a wave of new, innovative devices coming for consumers and businesses — from the convenience and mobility of tablets and 2-in-1s to the productive experience expected from laptops, all-in-ones and specialized industry devices. Many of these new devices are touch-enabled and will deliver advancements in processing power, battery life and design, across a range of price points.

Windows 8.1 offers a host of increased customization refinements and functional improvements, including the following:

  • Highly personal. An improved and more customizable Start screen offers variable tile sizes, more background designs and colors so each Windows device looks unique and personal to the individual. In addition, customers can choose how to start their Windows experience — at the Start screen or directly in the familiar Windows desktop — while all their Windows devices stay in sync with their Microsoft account.

  • More familiar and easy to navigate. As an iconic part of the Windows experience, Windows 8.1 brings back the Start button as a familiar point of navigation. An updated apps view lets users see all their apps at once for easy access and new clicks and cues, as well as a Help + Tips app that gets them up to speed quickly.

  • Enhanced search. The new Bing Smart Search provides the easiest way to find what users need on the device or on the Web in one beautiful and easy consolidated view that’s built for touch. Simply swipe or type from the Start screen, and Smart Search will find it — whether it’s a document on a PC, a photo album on SkyDrive, a favorite app, a song from Xbox Music or a website.

  • Wide range of apps and services from the Start. Windows 8.1 is the most complete out-of-the-box experience. It offers a range of apps and services from the Start screen, allowing customers to quickly and easily do the things they love on Windows, such as catching up with friends and family via Skype, emailing effortlessly in the Mail app, watching movies and TV shows on Xbox Video, finding new recipes with the Bing Food & Drink app, or listening to free streaming music via Xbox Music. Windows 8.1 also comes with the new Internet Explorer 11, which is fast, fluid and perfect for touch. Internet Explorer 11 brings enhanced touch performance, speed boosts, and synchronized browsing history, favorites and settings across all Windows 8.1 devices. Windows 8.1 also provides native support for 3-D printing, meaning it will have plug-and-play support for 3-D printers, enable apps to seamlessly print 3-D jobs and understand 3-D file formats.

  • The best for multitasking and productivity. Windows 8.1 includes the display and use of up to four apps side by side, flexible windows sizing for each app on the screen, the ability for one app to launch another app, and improved multimonitor support so users can view the desktop or apps from the Windows Store on any or all monitors.

  • Deep cloud integration with SkyDrive. Windows 8.1 makes it easier than ever to work from anywhere and know that files are always accessible — across devices and locations. With SkyDrive, users can create, edit, save and share files anywhere, anytime, on whatever device they’re using.

  • A beautifully redesigned Windows Store. The new design of the Windows Store improves how great apps are showcased and makes it easier for customers to get the apps they want. Fresh layouts and categories, such as New & Rising, make it easier to stay up to date on the hottest new entries to explore. Personalized recommendations use the Bing advanced recommendation and relevance system to help find new favorites. And with Windows 8.1, apps are updated automatically by default, so users always have the newest and best version of any app, such as Fresh Paint, which now includes watercolor, a new graphite pencil set and a new clean, modern user interface for the latest painting or drawing creations. New and updated apps are also continually being delivered to the Windows Store, including Evernote, Facebook for Windows 8.1, Hulu Plus, Adobe Photoshop Express, eBay, Netflix and NOOK.

Customers can go to http://www.windows.com/shop to learn about the wide variety of new Windows devices available now and throughout the holiday season to find the one that best fits their needs and budgets. More information about Windows 8.1 is at http://blogs.windows.com and http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

The information contained in this press release is provided for informational purposes only, and Microsoft makes no warranties, express or implied, with respect to the press release or the information contained in it.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.16.2013 - MS13-081 - Critical : Vulnerabilities in Windows Kernel-Mode Drivers Could Allow Remote Code Execution (2870008) - Version: 1.2



View Microsoft related news. Severity Rating: Critical
Revision Note: V1.2 (October 16, 2013): For update 2855844, corrected the update replacement for Windows 7 for 32-bit Systems Service Pack 1, Windows 7 for x64-based Systems Service Pack 1, and Windows Server 2008 R2 for x64-based Systems Service Pack 1. This is an informational change only.
Summary: This security update resolves seven privately reported vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows. The most severe of these vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user views shared content that embeds OpenType or TrueType font files. An attacker who successfully exploited these vulnerabilities could take complete control of an affected system.
Full View / NID: 45987 / Submitted by: The Zilla of Zuron

10.15.2013 - New study reveals most important skills for students



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REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 15, 2013 — Top candidates for current and future jobs will be measured by capabilities and competencies, with 20 distinct skills bubbling up to the top in millions of high-growth, high-paying job postings, according to a white paper commissioned by Microsoft Corp. and released by IDC. The study provides insight into the skills students need for the top 60 high-growth, high-wage occupations that will account for 11.5 million new hires and 28 percent of job growth by 2020. Out of those skills, oral and written communication, detail orientation, and Microsoft Office proficiency top the list.

With technology and innovation booming, the global economy is changing and business needs are evolving. IDC research found that although a number of positions require technical skills, even more require knowledge and cognitive skills.

“Educators need to focus on teaching a breadth of skills. IT skills are important, but soft skills, while not evaluated in school, are fundamental to every job students are pursuing today and in the future,” said Anthony Salcito, vice president of Worldwide Public Sector Education at Microsoft. “IDC’s research reveals that although a number of positions require technical skills, even more require knowledge and cognitive skills gained from use of personal productivity applications and services. For this reason, Microsoft is committed to investing in students around the world to ensure they have access to the tools that teach these skills.”

IDC 'Skill Requirements for Tomorrow’s Best Jobs’ key findings

In looking at the job skills of the future, both hard and soft skills are important, according to IDC and Microsoft’s "Skill Requirements for Tomorrow’s Best Jobs: Helping Educators Provide Students with Skills and Tools They Need" white paper. By leveraging job and skill requirements from 14.6 million job postings from the second and third quarters of 2013, IDC identified the 20 most common skills required for those positions. To validate the importance of those skills, IDC examined 60 occupations that have above average growth potential and salary potential between 2013 and 2020.

“Of the more than 11,000 skills we examined, it is interesting to see the play between hard and soft skills,” said Cushing Anderson, program vice president of Project-Based Services at IDC. “Many of the top 20 skills reinforce the other; the skills we identified are not taken in isolation but rather are a golden set of skills that are consistently important. Seventy percent of the high-growth, high-wage occupations frequently require at least one of the top 20 skills.”

Key findings from this research include the following:

• The 60 high-growth occupations include jobs in medical support and nursing; sales and marketing professionals; education, teaching, and instruction; computer programming and specialists; and office managers/business operations.

• These high-growth, high-wage positions are in demand across multinational companies, with more than 53,000 companies looking for them on a recent weekday. Global companies posting for these positions include financial services firms like CITI and Santander; consulting and accounting firms like Deloitte and PwC; manufacturers like General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon Corp.; and retail giants like Home Depot and Advanced AutoParts.

• Communication, integration and presentation skills (CIPs) are required for about 40 percent of all positions and make up 11 of the top 20 skills that are required by 39 percent of the fastest growing, highest paying positions.

• The only software package called out within the top 20 skills across all occupations is Microsoft Office, explicitly required in 15 percent of high-growth, high-salary positions. Microsoft Office is No. 3 on the list of skills most required, and Microsoft PowerPoint and Word are No. 11 and No. 13 most required skills.

• Assessments should be used to demonstrate students’ mastery of material and help improve the teaching and learning process. IDC calls for programs to include formative adaptive assessments, performance-based tasks to demonstrate CIPs capabilities, and appropriate technologies to facilitate consistent administration and evaluation of assessments.

Student advantage

In an effort to help prepare students for the technology skills required in the workforce, Microsoft on Tuesday announced Student Advantage, a new benefit to qualifying institutions that brings Microsoft Office 365 Education to more students worldwide. Microsoft Office 365 Education, an always-up-to-date cloud productivity service, is currently used by 110 million students, faculty and staff around the world. Office 365 Education enables students to communicate and collaborate more efficiently, access assignments in shared workspaces, have notes synchronized in OneNote and have familiar Office applications such as Word, PowerPoint and Excel anywhere, across virtually any device.

Beginning Dec. 1, 2013, any institution worldwide that licenses Office 365 ProPlus or Office Professional Plus for staff and faculty can provide access to Office 365 ProPlus for students at no additional cost. Today, more than 35,000 institutions are automatically eligible to deliver the Student Advantage benefit to their students. Office 365 ProPlus includes all the familiar and full Office applications — locally installed on up to five devices and available offline. When a school combines Student Advantage with Microsoft’s other cloud services, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online and Lync Online, all available free through Office 365 Education, students have access to the same set of gold-standard productivity tools and services used by Fortune 500 companies all over the world.

“Students use Office every day for school work and activities that are most important to them. Office not only helps students stay organized and get their work done today but at the same time develops skills that will be required when they enter the work force. In fact, no other software or services show up in the top 20 most important skills identified in the research report,” Salcito said. “We are thrilled to offer Student Advantage to schools across the globe so students have access to the latest, most up-to-date version of the world’s leading set of productivity tools in order to give them a competitive advantage when entering the workforce.”

Nearly 98 percent of students using productivity software currently use Office. Student Advantage enables students to access the familiar experience of Office in an always-up-to-date cloud service across their compatible PCs, tablets and phones.

IDC methodology

The research was conducted by scanning 14.6 million job postings from April to September 2013 supplied by WANTEDAnalytics, a provider of real-time business intelligence for the talent marketplace. Of those jobs, IDC analyzed the posting and identified the 20 most common skills required for those positions. IDC also leveraged data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, including data on 2010 employment and forecasts for 2020. IDC analyzed employment data for 748 Standard Occupational Classifications and selected the most attractive classifications according to three criteria: size, growth and wages.

About Microsoft in Education

At Microsoft, we are deeply committed to working with governments, communities, schools and educators to use the power of information technology to deliver technology, services and programs that provide anytime, anywhere learning for all. For more information: http://www.microsoft.com/education.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.14.2013 - Johnson Controls selects Office 365 to improve internal communication for employees worldwide



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REDMOND, Wash. Oct . 14 , 201 3 Johnson Controls, a global diversified technology and industrial leader in more than 150 countries, has secured Microsoft Office 365 for its employees, partners and suppliers around the world, enhancing knowledge sharing on a global scale and fostering innovation through greater employee interaction.

“Collaboration has been the hallmark of Johnson Controls’ success as a company,” said Colin Boyd, vice president, information technology and chief information officer, Johnson Controls. “We chose Office 365 because it will help us more effectively capitalize on our collaborative culture.”

The company evaluated multiple options and ultimately concluded that Microsoft’s cloud solutions offered the most reliable, cost-effective and scalable tools required by a global corporation. In addition, the platform’s capability to provide real-time translation in many languages effectively supports Johnson Controls’ focus on bolstering interactions among employees.

Boyd added: “At Johnson Controls, we will use Office 365 to enable the spontaneous, lateral communications that drive innovation and increase productivity, which are essential requirements in today’s global manufacturing environments.”

With Office 365, employees can engage in dynamic, evolving conversations that spark ideas and new ways of solving problems no matter where they are located. From the instant messaging, desktop sharing and Web conferencing capabilities in Lync to surfacing project-related email messages through Outlook, Office 365 gives the company the efficient and global communication tools it needs to be agile and responsive.

For example, the account teams within Johnson Controls’ automotive business consist of dedicated groups of people located in different countries working together to provide coordinated and consistent service to hundreds of customer locations. With Office 365, a shop supervisor with a car seat assembly question can use a smartphone to take a video of the assembly and upload it to a SharePoint site for the engineering team to immediately review and resolve.

“Avoiding any production issues that might impact our customers is a key issue for Johnson Controls,” Boyd said. “We’re using Office 365 to mitigate this risk, connecting our 300 production plants with engineering centers through real-time communications to drive quality and responsiveness for our customers.”

More information about how organizations are turning to Microsoft technology is available in the Microsoft Customer Spotlight newsroom.

About Johnson Controls

Johnson Controls is a global diversified technology and industrial leader serving customers in more than 150 countries. Our 168,000 employees create quality products, services and solutions to optimize energy and operational efficiencies of buildings; lead-acid automotive batteries and advanced batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles; and interior systems for automobiles. Our commitment to sustainability dates back to our roots in 1885, with the invention of the first electric room thermostat. Through our growth strategies and by increasing market share we are committed to delivering value to shareholders and making our customers successful. In 2013, Corporate Responsibility Magazine recognized Johnson Controls as the #14 company in its annual “100 Best Corporate Citizens” list. For additional information, please visit http://www.johnsoncontrols.com.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.14.2013 - Microsoft Ventures supports entrepreneurship in Africa



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NAIROBI , Kenya Oct. 1 4 , 2013 — Microsoft Corp. on Monday announced the expansion of the Microsoft Ventures partnership program into Africa. Microsoft Ventures was introduced in June as a coordinated global effort to offer tools, resources, expertise and routes to market for startups through partnerships with accelerators around the world.

The company has selected 88mph as its first African accelerator partner. 88mph was chosen for its proven model of helping launch and secure funding for innovative African startups. Together, Microsoft and 88mph will work to provide startups with mentorship, technology guidance, seed funding, joint selling opportunities and more.

Microsoft Ventures takes a holistic approach to helping startups get off the ground through a community evangelism program including Microsoft BizSpark, an accelerator program and a seed fund that works with startups worldwide. The expansion into Africa was conducted as part of the recently launched Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative and will therefore prioritize startups in key sectors including agriculture, education and healthcare.

“Through the 4Afrika Initiative, we are deeply committed to fostering African innovation and to fueling Africa’s economic growth and competitiveness, and we are very proud to see Microsoft Ventures extend its reach into the African continent,” said Amrote Abdella, director, 4Afrika Venture Capital and Startup Programs. “We strongly believe that with the right support, African startups hold tremendous potential to impact both their local economies and the world’s perception of African-led innovation and entrepreneurship.”

Startups will be selected based on the globally established criteria of Microsoft Ventures: Applying companies must have a full-time founding team, a bold vision for tackling a real problem, technologically driven solutions and less than $1 million raised. In Africa, Microsoft is also looking for solutions that can scale across and even outside the African continent.

“Microsoft is a company that deeply understands the value of the ecosystem, and we believe that by working together, 88mph and Microsoft can offer a world-class launch pad to African startups looking to achieve true scale,” said Nikolai Barnwell, Nairobi director, 88mph. “We share a deep commitment to the African startup community and look forward to showcasing more and more African innovators on the world stage.”

The graduating startups from 88mph’s most recent accelerator class will participate in a DemoDay on Dec. 5 in Nairobi where, with Microsoft’s help, the startups will present their businesses and opportunities to invited investors.

Through the BizSpark program, the company has already helped support 625 African startups to date by providing access to Microsoft tools and technologies, and this program will continue. And for the second consecutive year, the company is also a sponsor of DEMO Africa, a startup competition taking place Oct. 24–25 in Nairobi.

More information about Microsoft Ventures is at http://www.microsoftventures.com. More information about the 4Afrika Initiative is at http://www.microsoft.com/4afrika.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.10.2013 - MS13-080 - Critical : Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer (2879017) - Version: 1.3



View Microsoft related news. Severity Rating: Critical
Revision Note: V1.3 (October 10, 2013): Bulletin revised to remove CVE-2013-3871 from the vulnerabilities addressed by this update. Including this CVE in the original security bulletin text was a documentation error. CVE-2013-3871 is scheduled to be addressed in a future security update. This is an informational change only. Customers who have already successfully updated their systems do not need to take any action.
Summary: This security update resolves one publicly disclosed vulnerability and eight privately reported vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer. The most severe vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user views a specially crafted webpage using Internet Explorer. An attacker who successfully exploited the most severe of these vulnerabilities could gain the same user rights as the current user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.
Full View / NID: 45949 / Submitted by: The Zilla of Zuron

10.10.2013 - MS13-082 - Critical : Vulnerabilities in .NET Framework Could Allow Remote Code Execution (2878890) - Version: 1.1



View Microsoft related news. Severity Rating: Critical
Revision Note: V1.1 (October 10, 2013): Bulletin revised to indicate that Server Core installations of Windows Server 2012 are affected by the vulnerability addressed in the 2861194 update. This is an informational change only. There were no changes to the detection logic or the security update files. Customers who have already successfully updated their systems do not need to take any action.
Summary: This security update resolves two privately reported vulnerabilities and one publicly disclosed vulnerability in Microsoft .NET Framework. The most severe of the vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user visits a website containing a specially crafted OpenType font (OTF) file using a browser capable of instantiating XBAP applications.
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10.09.2013 - Microsoft Retail Stores to host midnight launch events for Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 in 10 cities across the country



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REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 9, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. on Tuesday announced it is hosting a series of midnight launch events at 10 Microsoft retail stores across the nation to celebrate the launch of Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2. Starting at 10 p.m. local time on Oct. 21, each participating store will host the Surface Challenge, offering contestants in each market a chance to go head-to-head in a series of fun, interactive and sometimes physical games for a chance to be whisked away to Orlando, Fla., the next morning for the Mall at Millenia store opening, where Pitbull will perform.

Attendees are encouraged to join the event in advance at the Microsoft Store Facebook page. At the event, they will have the chance to win dozens of other prizes as well as be among the first to check out both Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 along with the latest accessories before they’re available to the public on Oct. 22. In addition to the 10 midnight launch events, the remainder of the more than 70 Microsoft retail stores will be holding events and giveaways to celebrate the new Surface later this month. Details will be posted at http://www.microsoftstore.com as they become available, or people can visit their local Microsoft retail store to find out more.

“We’ve worked hard to ensure that Microsoft retail stores will be the best place to experience and purchase the most productive tablet on the planet — Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2,” said David McAughan, chief operating officer of Microsoft Retail Stores. “Our stores are all about having fun with our customers and connecting with local communities. These Surface launch events are a great example of the type of experiences you can enjoy at our stores as we kick off the holiday season.”

Events will take place in the following locations:

• Bellevue Square Mall

• Westfield San Francisco Centre

• Scottsdale Fashion Square

• Dadeland Mall (Miami)

• Lennox Square Mall (Atlanta)

• The Shops at Prudential Center (Boston)

• The Westchester (White Plains, N.Y.)

• The Domain (Austin, Texas)

• The Fashion Centre at Pentagon City (Arlington, Va.)

• Oakbrook Center Mall (Oak Brook, Ill.)

Surface 2 includes significant new features — it’s thinner, faster and so much more than a tablet. A powerful laptop in a tablet package, Surface Pro 2 is a notable improvement, providing faster performance and significantly longer battery life. Both devices also feature a new lineup of Surface accessories.

Microsoft continues to expand its existing retail footprint in the U.S., offering an assortment of best-in-class products, including Windows PCs, Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, Windows Phones, Kinect for Xbox 360, Office, and more. Microsoft aims to provide a premium retail experience that is entertaining, educational and as easy as possible with these new locations. More information can be found at http://www.microsoftstore.com.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspective from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

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10.09.2013 - MS13-081 - Critical : Vulnerabilities in Windows Kernel-Mode Drivers Could Allow Remote Code Execution (2870008) - Version: 1.1



View Microsoft related news. Severity Rating: Critical
Revision Note: V1.1 (October 9, 2013): Bulletin revised to announce a detection change to correct an offering issue for the 2847311 update for Microsoft Windows Server 2008 for 32-bit Systems Service Pack 2 (Server Core installation) and Windows Server 2008 for x64-based Systems Service Pack 2 (Server Core installation). This is a detection change only. Customers who have already successfully updated their systems do not need to take any action.
Summary: This security update resolves seven privately reported vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows. The most severe of these vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user views shared content that embeds OpenType or TrueType font files. An attacker who successfully exploited these vulnerabilities could take complete control of an affected system.
Full View / NID: 45942 / Submitted by: The Zilla of Zuron

10.08.2013 - Microsoft forms 4Afrika Advisory Council



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DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania — Oct. 9, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. on Wednesday unveiled the 4Afrika Advisory Council, an external board of advisers tasked with guiding strategic investments undertaken by the Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative across the continent and ensuring 4Afrika is closely aligned to broad African development goals. His Excellency Benjamin Mkapa, former president of the United Republic of Tanzania chairs the board, and Mteto Nyati, managing director of Microsoft South Africa, serves as the vice chair.

The Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative was introduced in February 2013 as an effort through which the company is actively engaging in Africa’s economic development to improve its global competitiveness. To help ensure the initiative meets its critical goals, Microsoft 4Afrika chose to form the 4Afrika Advisory Council to solicit external input and guidance from a respected group of regional influencers.

Other members of the 4Afrika Advisory Council include Juliana Rotich, executive director for Ushahidi and senior TED fellow from Kenya; Hanan Abdelmeguid, CEO of Orascom Telecom Ventures in Egypt; Bright Simons, social innovator, entrepreneur, writer and researcher in Ghana; Florence Iwegbue, co-founder LiveWello LLC in Nigeria; Marieme Jamme, Senegalese-born and London-based CEO, blogger, technologist and social entrepreneur; Luís Lélis, executive director at Banco Angolano de Investimentos in Angola; Phuti Mahanyele, CEO of Shanduka Group in South Africa; Richard Attias, founder of The New York Forum and Moroccan events producer; Benjamin Mophatlane, CEO of Business Connexion in South Africa; and Monica Musonda, CEO of Java Foods and board member of the Bank of Zambia. Louis Otieno, director of Legal and Corporate affairs for Microsoft Africa, will serve as the council secretary.

“I am deeply honored to chair the 4Afrika Advisory Council and to represent this prestigious group of council members because we all believe deeply in Microsoft 4Afrika’s mission to help Africa improve its global competitiveness,” Mkapa said. “Together with the Microsoft team, we look forward to helping to grow African leaders, encourage and support African businesses and highlight African innovation here on the continent and on the world stage.”

The council had its first meeting Oct. 4, 2013, in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. At this meeting, the council discussed topics relevant to advancing the 4Afrika mission, including the importance of developing strategies that address both rural and urban youth populations, the role of teachers as content creators, and approaches to building sustainable models for growth of African entrepreneurs and small businesses.

In addition, to ensure that the critical voices of African youth are heard, the council made provisions for four additional slots on the 4Afrika Advisory Council, to be occupied by youth leaders from the continent. Candidates were selected from existing African youth leadership groups, including U.S. President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative, the African Leadership Network, the African Leadership Initiative, the Desmond Tutu Leadership Fellowship Program and the World Economic Forum’s Forum of Young Global Leaders. Nominees will be contacted in the coming weeks with formal invitations to join the 4Afrika Advisory Council.

“As established influencers and innovators in Africa, we know that this group composing the 4Afrika Advisory Council will make highly impactful contributions to Microsoft 4Afrika’s efforts to shape development priorities across the continent with the use of technology as an enabler,” Nyati said. “Not only will the group help Microsoft 4Afrika to understand and engage in existing areas of untapped potential, but we are confident it will also help us break new ground within the initiative’s targeted sectors, including healthcare, education and small business enablement.”

The council will meet in person twice annually and will also hold regionally focused meetings at other times in the year. The council members have also committed to contribute to 4Afrika efforts in capacity-building with African youth leaders.

The Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative is built on the dual beliefs that technology can accelerate growth for Africa and Africa can also accelerate technology for the world. More information is available at http://www.microsoft.com/4afrika.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

Full View / NID: 45934 / Submitted by: The Zilla of Zuron

10.08.2013 - MS13-083 - Critical : Vulnerability in Windows Common Control Library Could Allow Remote Code Execution (2864058) - Version: 1.0



View Microsoft related news. Severity Rating: Critical
Revision Note: V1.0 (October 8, 2013): Bulletin published.
Summary: This security update resolves a privately reported vulnerability in Microsoft Windows. The vulnerability could allow remote code execution if an attacker sends a specially crafted web request to an ASP.NET web application running on an affected system. An attacker could exploit this vulnerability without authentication to run arbitrary code.
Full View / NID: 45933 / Submitted by: The Zilla of Zuron

10.08.2013 - MS13-084 - Important : Vulnerabilities in Microsoft SharePoint Server Could Allow Remote Code Execution (2885089) - Version: 1.0



View Microsoft related news. Severity Rating: Important
Revision Note: V1.0 (October 8, 2013): Bulletin published.
Summary: This security update resolves two privately reported vulnerabilities in Microsoft Office server software. The most severe vulnerability could allow remote code execution if a user opens a specially crafted Office file in an affected version of Microsoft SharePoint Server, Microsoft Office Services, or Web Apps.
Full View / NID: 45932 / Submitted by: The Zilla of Zuron

10.08.2013 - MS13-085 - Important : Vulnerabilities in Microsoft Excel Could Allow Remote Code Execution (2885080) - Version: 1.0



View Microsoft related news. Severity Rating: Important
Revision Note: V1.0 (October 8, 2013): Bulletin published.
Summary: This security update resolves two privately reported vulnerabilities in Microsoft Office. The vulnerabilities could allow remote code execution if a user opens a specially crafted Office file with an affected version of Microsoft Excel or other affected Microsoft Office software. An attacker who successfully exploited the vulnerabilities could gain the same user rights as the current user. Users whose accounts are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than users who operate with administrative user rights.
Full View / NID: 45931 / Submitted by: The Zilla of Zuron
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