Windows besieged by hackers; number of Windows viruses soars by more than 400%

“The number of new viruses and worms aimed at Microsoft Corp.’s ubiquitous Windows operating system rose 400 percent between January and June from the same year-earlier period, computer security company Symantec said Sunday,” Reuters reports. “Nearly 5,000 new Windows viruses and worms were documented in the first half of the year, up from about 1,000 a year earlier, said Symantec, the world’s largest computer security company by revenue. The problem of computer viruses can be massive, overloading computers with messages, automatically rebooting systems and sometimes disabling them.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Windows-only users should be seriously concerned. The good news is that there is a much better way! Please read this article for more information: Wall Street Journal’s Mossberg: ‘The single most effective way to avoid viruses and spyware is to simply chuck Windows altogether and buy an Apple Macintosh’ – September 16, 2004

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Is Mac OS X really inherently more secure than Windows? – August 26, 2003
BusinessWeek’s Haddad gets it wrong; thinks low market share spares Macs from viruses – August 28, 2003
Shattering the Mac OS X ‘security through obscurity’ myth – August 28, 2003
Fortune columnist: ‘get a Mac’ to thwart viruses; right answer for the wrong reasons – September 02, 2003
Wall Street Journal’s Mossberg on making the switch from Windows to Mac – September 18, 2003
New York Times: Mac OS X ‘much more secure than Windows XP’ – September 18, 2003
Columnist tries the ‘security through obscurity’ myth to defend Windows vs. Macs on virus front – October 1, 2003
Gates: Windows ‘by far the most secure’ system; tries to use ‘Mac OS X secure through obscurity’ myth – January 27, 2004
Mac OS X has no viruses; what’s wrong with Windows? – February 11, 2004
SmartMoney: Long-suffering Windows users can only dare to dream of Mac’s ease-of-use – February 12, 2004
Spyware, adware plague Windows users online; Mac OS X users surf freely – April 19, 2004
Gartner: Worms jack up the total cost of Microsoft Windows – May 07, 2004
Windows ‘Scob’ virus designed to steal financial data, passwords; Macintosh unaffected – June 26, 2004
Tired of patching patches to patch Windows patches? Writer suggests getting a Mac – August 03, 2004
Mossberg: Dump your Windows machine and get an Apple Macintosh to free yourself of spyware – August 25, 2004
Millions of Windows PC’s hijacked by hackers, turned into zombies; Macintosh unaffected – September 08, 2004
Security is top priority in Apple’s Mac OS X – September 12, 2004
Windows XP worm speaks to users as it deletes their files; Macintosh unaffected – September 13, 2004
University of Chicago recommends all students patch Windows at least once a day – September 14, 2004
USA Today columinst angry about Windows viruses, adware, spyware – September 15, 2004

42 Comments

  1. If anyone ever decides to buy a Mac, then you will get viruses, too. Security through obscurity. No one wants to write anything for 2% of the market, developers or virus writers.

  2. Uh yeah, that’s it Jon E Wunnut. No hackers out there want to be the very first to create a virus on the Mac. No one wants to make the headlines. They just wanna follow along. That’s because only my sister and I own Macs. We are the only 2 left in the world….

  3. There is just something, how do I put this politely…uh, STUPID about businesses (and everyone else) who continue to use Windows! Admittedly, some are changing. But, not enough. I still continue to hear people talk as though Macs don’t really exist as a serious alternative. IT people, of course. It’s their job.

    “Be stupid. Help others to be the same.”

    It’s their job description.

  4. “If anyone ever decides to buy a Mac, then you will get viruses”

    I have a mac, I don’t getviruses?????

    I really love the the “only reason Microsoft gets viruses is because it has big marketshare” excuse.
    Thats like saying the only reason Mercedes is a safer car is because there are less of them on the road, so therefore you are less likely to get into a crash.

    Maybe it is true, but the way I see it is because my mac is one of the 2% marketshare and because NO ONE would bother writing a virus for it, and since windows advocates proudly claim that apple will never gain the market share to warrent a Mac OS X virus, means that I have to carry on computing without those added benefits of malware of spyware ;(

    I guess I will just have to put up with being part of the minority, DAMN it sucks. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  5. Security through obscurity is a myth as The New York Times reported:

    “That, as it turns out, is a myth, no matter who repeats it… Mac OS X and Linux [are] much more secure than Windows XP. For example:”

    – “Windows comes with five of its ports open; Mac OS X comes with all of them shut and locked… These ports are precisely what permitted viruses like Blaster to infiltrate millions of PC�s. Microsoft says that it won�t have an opportunity to close these ports until the next version of Windows, which is a couple of years away.”

    – “When a program tries to install itself in Mac OS X… a dialog box interrupts your work and asks you permission for that installation — in fact, requires your account password. Windows XP goes ahead and installs it, potentially without your awareness.”

    – “Administrator accounts in Windows (and therefore viruses that exploit it) have access to all areas of the operating system. In Mac OS X, even an administrator can�t touch the files that drive the operating system itself. A Mac OS X virus (if there were such a thing) could theoretically wipe out all of your files, but wouldn�t be able to access anyone else�s stuff — and couldn�t touch the operating system itself.”

    – “No Macintosh e-mail program automatically runs scripts that come attached to incoming messages, as Microsoft Outlook does.”

    Pogue writes, “…the conclusion is clear: Linux and Mac OS X aren�t just more secure because fewer people use them. They�re also much harder to crack right out of the box.” Pogue also covers Windows virus programs and other reasons why Mac OS X is simply more secure than Windows. Full article here.

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