Feeds

Win XP? Your PLAGUE risk is SIX times that of Win 8 - NOW

... and that's BEFORE Microsoft ends support - report

Build a business case: developing custom apps

UK-based Windows XP users were six more likely to actually be infected than their counterparts who use more recent versions of Windows, according to figures from Microsoft.

The company is likely trying to highlight the infection rates of the 12-year-old OS as a way to get customers to upgrade. It says that 9.1 of 1,000 XP (SP3) boxes scanned - which is just under one per cent - had been found to be infected.

The software giant's latest annual "Security Intelligence Report" reports that, on average, 17 per cent of computers worldwide encountered malware during the first half of 2013.

Top threats facing the UK include HTML/IframeRef: – "specially formed" iFrame tags that point to remote websites containing malicious code; Sirefef: – a rogue security software family called Antivirus 2010 among other names; and BlacoleRef: – malicious JavaScript inserted into compromised websites that redirects browsers to the infamous Blackhole Exploit Kit.

From Microsoft's report

The Microsoft Security Intelligence Report takes data from over one billion sources across the Windows landscape – data was drawn from Redmond real estate such as its Malicious Software Removal Tool, Exchange Online, Windows Defender and more (see page 134) – providing an overview into the threat landscape across Windows boxes around the world. The information was collected during the first six months of 2013.

The research also looks at software vulnerabilities, software vulnerability exploits, malicious and potentially unwanted software and security vulnerabilities in both Microsoft and third-party software.

"Vulnerability disclosures across the industry decreased 1.3 per cent from 2H 2012, and 10.1 percent from 1H 2012. An increase in operating system vulnerability disclosures in 1H 2013 largely offset a corresponding decrease in application vulnerability disclosures during the same period, resulting in little overall change," according to Microsoft.

"Overall, however, vulnerability disclosures remain significantly lower than they were prior to 2009, when totals of 3,500 disclosures or more per half-year period were not uncommon."

Microsoft doesn't provide a reason but El Reg's security desk suspects that some combination of improved security practices among vendors and the growth in the exploit marketplaces (which naturally result in lower vulnerability disclosures) is behind the change.

Application vulnerability disclosures accounted for 63.5 per cent of total disclosures for the first half of 2013. Operating system vulnerabilities accounted for 22.2 per cent of total disclosures, while browser bug reports made up the remaining 14.3 per cent.

Redmond is urging laggard Win XP users to upgrade their machines before security updates for the OS end on 8 April 2014. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Rupert Murdoch says Google is worse than the NSA
Mr Burns vs. The Chocolate Factory, round three!
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Germany 'accidentally' snooped on John Kerry and Hillary Clinton
Dragnet surveillance picks up EVERYTHING, USA, m'kay?
Know what Ferguson city needs right now? It's not Anonymous doxing random people
U-turn on vow to identify killer cop after fingering wrong bloke
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
Think crypto hides you from spooks on Facebook? THINK AGAIN
Traffic fingerprints reveal all, say boffins
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.