Windows users the world over will almost certainly be familiar with malware and the numerous hoops one must jump through in order to try to prevent it. How many PC’s have been replaced because the unsuspecting (and often inexperienced) PC user thought that the problem was with the PC hardware itself and not the “software” (and I use that term loosely) that was pre-loaded onto it.
The BBC have recently written about a sample of PC’s in a study being pre-loaded with malware intentionally prior to buying them , so with the best will in the world on behalf of the consumer, you’ve lost before you have begun.
One virus called Nitol found by Microsoft steals personal details to help criminals plunder online bank accounts.
Comforting to know when, if it was up to Ballmer and crew you’d be doing everything “The Microsoft Way”. It gets better:
Microsoft said the criminals behind the malicious program had exploited insecure supply chains to get viruses installed as PCs were being built.
Ah…thats ok. It’s not a mistake, it’s not an accidental infection, its criminals intentionally infecting these machines before consumers purchase them. That’s ok then. I’m sure potential customers feel better already.
Microsoft are claiming to take responsibility for the report and the subsequent discovery of this criminal act, however what about the years of problems and continued infections of other Windows users? Where’s the aggressive tackling of issues there?
Speaking of aggressive, the only aggression I saw when I did use Windows in the home many years ago, was the keenness some Microsoft Advocates tried to shift the blame onto the users and their poor security habits. Infact they blame everyone but Microsoft themselves for releasing an Operating System open to abuse.
Now we are entering into an age of tech diversity and multiple platforms/form factors the Microsoft issues will become less prevalent, as we see numerous customers choose alternative solutions, be that Apple, Linux or anything else, we see the appeal of the pre-installed Windows becoming less desirable for the criminal element. That can only be a good thing.
Putting pre-loaded malware infested Windows to one side, I think that the only way to be 100% sure that as a Windows user you don’t become a victim is never to connect your Windows PC online.