CWmike writes "About 40 different Windows applications contain a critical flaw that can be used by attackers to hijack PCs and infect them with malware, says HD Moore, chief security officer at Rapid7 and creator of the open-source Metasploit penetration-testing toolkit. Gregg Keizer reports that the bug was patched by Apple in its iTunes software for Windows four months ago, but remains in more than three dozen other Windows programs. Moore did not reveal the names of the vulnerable applications or their makers, however. Each affected program will have to be patched separately. Moore first hinted at the widespread bug in a message on Twitter on Wednesday. 'The cat is out of the bag, this issue affects about 40 different apps, including the Windows shell,' he tweeted, then linked to an advisory published by Acros, a Slovenian security firm."