Hackers already targeting viruses for Microsoft’s Windows Vista

“Hackers are already working on viruses for Microsoft’s upcoming Vista platform,” Matt Whipp reports for PC Pro. “According to Finnish security experts F-Secure, an Austrian virus writer known as ‘Second Part to Hell’ – from the ‘Ready Rangers Liberation Front’ group – has published his efforts on writing virus code for Vista’s MSH (Microsoft Shell) command line interface, including five viruses… plans for MSH remain unclear. Wininsider reports that the shell might be dropped from the release of Vista, as there was as yet no product scheduled in which it was due to ship, but Microsoft declined to comment further… even if MSH is disabled or removed from Vista on the desktop, it might still make an appearance in server products such as Exchange Server 12. But even here systems such as mail and web servers would still be vulnerable, deployed at the network perimeter.”

Full article here.

“Most security experts had not expected to see a Windows Vista virus so soon, Mikko Hyppönen, chief research officer with Helsinki’s F-Secure Corp. said. ‘The only surprise here is that it came so early,’ he said. ‘It’s been eight days since the beta of the operating system was out.” Monad was released several days prior to the Windows Vista beta,'” Robert McMillan reports for IDG News Service.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: According to Apple, there are “close to 16 million Mac OS X users” in the world and there are still zero (0) viruses. According to CNET, the Windows Vista Beta was released “to about 10,000 testers” last week. So much for the security via obscurity myth.

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  1. This doesn’t argue against security through obscurity. These people know that there will be a great many copies of Vista sold and they’re gearing up. In a few months there will be more copies of Vista out there than there are Mac users.

  2. While the MDN take is funny, it’s also a sad, and (hopefully) deliberate misstatement. theloniousMac points out, at least partly correctly, that in a year there will be many more copies of Windows Vista than there are of OSX.

    However, this is still a clear portrayal of the security level of Windows. It is inherently a flawed system, and even if they start over they won’t be able to catch up with the benefits of a UNIX core anytime soon.

    Please append the MDN take to acknowledge that the statement is misleading. It is more relevant to point out how quickly Windows was hacked again, than to try and argue the security through obscurity myth. (I’m really beginning to lose my faith in MDN….)

    mw: under, as in “don’t you understand?”

  3. All right, so really, what’s the big deal with viruses? I’ve got an XP machine for work–I’m on the internet constantly, with just an Airport Extreme between the machine and the world. I’ve got Norton installed, I’ve got Microsoft’s free adware installed. I’ve got both of those things plus the software updater scheduled to check for updates every day.

    I have not gotten a single virus, nor a single piece of adware.

    Not to defend M$ all that strongly, but really, it doesn’t seem all that hard to keep yourself protected on a PC.

  4. “Wininsider reports that the shell might be dropped from the release of Vista”

    Unlikely; MS is incapable of dropping anything from any of their products. Besides, if Vista is built in the MS tradition, dropping the shell will break all rest of the OS (a fitting payback from the days of tangling Explorer into the OS).

    MS has no choice but to ship the OS as-is. Let the infections begin.

    “Most security experts had not expected to see a Windows Vista virus so soon”

    Experts = naive fools. Is anyone really surprised? FWIW I think it’s both hilarious and tragic that viruses are in the waiting for a vaporware OS. “Trustworthy Computing”? Trust only that MS’s approach to security is a joke.

  5. hairbo,

    I’m on the internet regularly with Mac OS X and nothing extra installed, only the built-in firewall turned on. I also have not gotten a single virus, nor a single piece of adware.

    The fact daily updates are necessary are testament to Window’s insecurity. Name one other consumer product where people have to be so vigilant in order to keep things safe and secure. Even highly theft-prone cars don’t need such regular updates! It’s amazing that such user-intensive care is OK with Windows, but would be absolutely unacceptable anywhere else.

  6. Quote:
    (I’m really beginning to lose my faith in MDN….)

    MDN has always been very biased with little attempt to be fair to windows. I lost my faith in their objectivity almost as soon as I started checking the site regularly. They are a great source for news but the “MDN take” and the opinions are often naive to point of being useless.

    This story about Vista being infected is bad enough. I don’t see why MDN has to make it seem even worse. This is not the first time I’ve seen MDN make vaguely truthful or completely misleading statements or titles in the interest of pumping up OS X and deflating MS. I think its sad because OS X naturally beats MS in most things and their constant bias degrades that point more than it helps it.

    MDN, please let OS X and the news stories speak for themselves. Add commentary and backstory but only if it is true and fair.

  7. I use Win2000 Service pack 4 at work. I don’t get viruses or adware either. Mainly, this is because I am behind a corporate firewall and I run two adware prevention programs, as well as MacAfee anti-virus software.

    So what’s the problem with that? I perform data analysis on about 2 million records per day using an MSIE client application. Each and every time I access a record my virus software has to scan it. This adds a couple milliseconds to each operation, which adds up to an hour or so of wasted time every day. Why does it have to be this way? Because not only is Windows basically insecure at the user level, but due to its administrative design flaws my IT department can’t figure out how to disable it solely on the internal network when using MSIE. Windows is crap.

  8. Jay —

    You’re missing the point. It’s so much fun to bash M$ and all their woes! MDN is also entertainment so not everything should be taken too seriously.

    I’m savoring every blunder M$ makes and enjoying watching their slow demise! Die M$, die!!! ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”vampire” style=”border:0;” />

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