On July 11, 2023, Microsoft disclosed a vulnerability impacting Microsoft Office and Windows.  

What is a vulnerability?

A vulnerability is a weakness that can be exploited by cybercriminals to gain unauthorized access to a computer system. After exploiting a vulnerability, a cyberattack can run malicious code, install software, and steal sensitive data.

Protecting your systems and applications from vulnerabilities protects both Queen’s and your personal data from the risk of cyberattack.

What do I need to do?

Queen’s uses Microsoft Defender for Office 365 to protect against attachments that attempt to exploit the vulnerability, and Queen’s users with Microsoft 365 Apps (versions 2302 and later) are protected from exploitation of the vulnerability in Office; however, Microsoft recommends that users with older versions of Microsoft 365 Apps (versions 2301 and earlier) update to the latest version to reduce the impact of activity associated with exploiting the vulnerability. 

To protect your systems and applications from vulnerabilities, immediately ensure you are operating the most recent version of Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise. 

To get started, check your version of Office. For instructions, refer to What version of Office am I using? 

A screenshot of how to determine what version of apps for enterprise you are using

If you have a version of Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise installed on a version lower than 2302, proceed to update your applications. Check out Microsoft’s instructions for updating your applications, select the article depending on your operating system, and follow the steps for “Newer versions of Office" as indicated in the image below:

a screenshot of the microsoft support page showing how to update your version of Office applications

I am unable to install updates for my applications.

If the option to update is missing, or if you are unable to install the most recent version of Office applications on your device, please contact the IT Support Centre by filling out an Online Help Form or by calling (613) 533-6666 during regular business hours.