EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

01.26.10

Australia May Ban Infected Windows PCs; Nearly Half of Europe No Longer Uses Internet Explorer

Posted in Australia, Europe, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft, Windows at 9:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: The security trouble caused by Microsoft’s software leads to more serious action even at national levels

FOUR months ago it was reported that Australian ISPs may kick Windows PCs which are zombies out of the Internet. That would be a huge number of PCs. The Australian has this new report on the same subject. [via]

COMPUTERS infected with viruses could be “expelled” from the internet under a new industry code to control Australia’s plague of contaminated PCs.

The federal government has given the internet industry an operate-or-legislate ultimatum to identify “zombie” computers involved in cyber-crime.

The Internet Industry Association – whose members include major internet service providers Optus, Telstra, Vodafone, AAPT, Virgin and Hutchison 3G, as well as industry giants Facebook, Google and Microsoft – is preparing a voluntary industry code to come into force this year.

The move follows industry intelligence that Australia now hosts the world’s third-highest number of “zombie” computers infected with malicious software that can attack other PCs, send spam, store child pornography or steal the user’s identity.

“Australian ISPs are making plans to disconnect one third to half of all their Windows users,” is how one of our readers put it. “Pathetic, though, how the editorial staff of the newspaper spin the problem by falsely implying that it is a ‘computer’ problem and not a Microsoft problem.”

IDG has this new article about botnets and it also ‘forgets’ to mention Windows. Why is that?

I caught up recently with Roland Dobbins, a solutions architect with the Asia Pacific division of Arbor Networks, a company that specializes in helping customers defend against botnet attacks. Dobbins said the Google incident a perfect example of how the botnet has enabled what he calls the democratization of espionage.

They do not mention the crucial fact that these botnets run Windows and as the recent Internet Explorer fiasco [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11] ought to have taught, Microsoft is to blame for it. It ignored critical flaws for many months, as usual (until attacks on users became too much of a problem).

Internet Explorer is already vulnerable again and Christopher Smart refutes Microsoft’s lies about other Web browsers being equally vulnerable.

With all this Internet Explorer insecurity issues coming to light, a common argument is:

“All browsers are insecure, just practice safer browsing by not clicking on links in unsolicited mail.”

Sure, that’s a important part of being safe on the net, but it’s only half of the picture. Of course all browsers will have security holes at particular points in time, no software is perfect.

However, what we should be looking at is a vendor’s response to security vulnerabilities. It’s how quickly a vendor can patch a hole and distribute the fix which is most important. (Of course, security by design and underlying operating system are also important factors.)

DaniWeb asks: “Time to dump Internet Explorer for something safer?”

Time to dump Internet Explorer for something safer?

?

Another day, another IE flaw! Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the Internet Explorer water (mainly as Microsoft told you it was after releasing yet another patch to fix yet another vulnerability) comes the news that actually, would you believe it, but Internet Explorer still isn’t safe.

Hopefully — just hopefully — the market will sort itself out. In Europe, where warnings were issued against the use of Internet Explorer*, Internet Explorer loses market rapidly:

According to data released by the AT Internet Institute, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer has fallen to under 60% of visits in Europe. The firm suggests that with widely publicized news of a major security flaw and moves being made by competing browsers, IE’s fall may not be reversed in the very near future.

Internet Explorer is not just a Web browser. It is Microsoft’s attempt to control and to change the Internet for its own benefit. Microsoft uses the Internet to suppress adoption of GNU/Linux, BSD, and Mac OS X through all sorts of proprietary extensions that make Web sites and Web applications inaccessible to non-Microsoft customers.

Here is fruit for thought:

Life after Windows: What happens to tech if Microsoft dies

[...]

Client applications: Kiss consistency good-bye The client application landscape will be almost unrecognizable in a post-Microsoft world. The deprecation of the legacy Windows API, coupled with the move to an entirely Web-based delivery model, will open the floodgates of innovation — and create massive headaches for support personnel, who must now contend with the rich variety of UI designs and implementations that define the Web application experience.

It is hypothetical, but no monopoly lasts forever; Microsoft too will be just part of the past some day.
____
* Internet Explorer was also slammed by the Australian government (and New Zealand) after Germany and France had made the call.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

4 Comments

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    January 26, 2010 at 11:29 am

    Gravatar

    Didn’t the late Ed Foster have a lot to say about getting rid of MSIE and MS Outlook? If I remember correctly some of the first calls about dropping both came when the ‘products’ were very new to the market and were obviously falling on their faces.

    His consumer rights work was a constant thumb in the eye for Microsoft and even after getting let go from the Microsoft sponsored magazines, he kept at it on his own site until his unexpected demise.

    I can find his obit, but not his work from 1999 and 2000.

    http://www.infoworld.com/d/adventures-in-it/in-memoriam-ed-foster-539

    http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2008/07/memoriam-ed-foster-1949-2008

  2. Dennis Murczak said,

    January 26, 2010 at 4:15 pm

    Gravatar

    Well, I found the “Life after Windows” article not so enlightening… the author seems to think everyone will fall over each other in anarchy and slaughter their pets if they can’t have any more Windows.

    In reality, it will be (better: already is) a steady shift away from legacy desktop-only technology. That’s where the industry heads, regardless of Microsoft hanging kicking and screaming at their coat-tails.

  3. your_friend said,

    January 27, 2010 at 12:28 am

    Gravatar

    No consistency without Microsoft? Nonsense! The basics of Unix have not changed much and free software implementations offer great simplification and user ease. Better yet, the Unix implementations have just worked and not needed “support”. In the same time period Microsoft has gone through the most contorted UI changes from Windows 1 to Windows 7, each step had multiple, inconsistent branches and all of them have been a support nightmare. Reading a script for Microsoft Outlook button pushing has never been adequate support for users. It would always have taken less time and been easier on everyone to relay the four or five pieces of standardized knowledge instead. Microsoft’s interfaces have intentionally hidden knowledge all along, it’s key to keeping users helpless and divided.

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    January 27, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    Gravatar

    @Dennis

    That article was from a “Windows guy”, so he’s just defending his territory.

What Else is New


  1. Apple- and Microsoft-Friendly Media Continues Attacking Android/Linux

    Some of the latest examples where corporate media (funded and run by large corporation) distorts facts, selectively covers facts, and generally serves to protect the Apple-Microsoft duopolist world view



  2. Qualys Admits That Its Scare Campaign (So-called 'GHOST') Somewhat Baseless

    Even the company that bombarded the media with its "GHOST" nonsense admits that this bug, which was fixed two years ago, does not pose much of a threat



  3. European Unitary Patent and Court System in Trouble

    New resistance to the Unitary Patent amid allegations of misconduct in the European patent authorities



  4. Text of Ruling/Decision Against Željko Topić (Regarding Audi as a Bribe)

    The legal loss of Željko Topić laid bear for the public to see even outside Croatia



  5. Media Coverage of Demonstration Against Jesper Kongstad of the Administrative Council (EPO)

    Last week's EPO demonstration has been covered by Danish media, raising awareness of the "banana republic" state of the EPO



  6. Links 29/1/2015: Android Shipments in 2014 Exceed 1,000,000,000, LibreOffice 4.4 is Out

    Links for the day



  7. Corporate Media, Led Astray by Patent Lawyers, Continues to Distort the Reality of Software Patents Post-Alice

    The press of the rich and the powerful continues its attempt to preserve software patents, despite the US Supreme Court's decision to abolish a lot of them on the basis of abstraction



  8. An Estimated 1,000 EPO Employees-Strong Legion Engulfs Danish Consulate to Protest Jesper Kongstad's (of Administrative Council) Protection of Benoît Battistelli

    A large protest waged by staff of the EPO targets one of the key facilitators of Battistelli's terrifying tyranny



  9. Links 28/1/2015: Ubuntu Touch Windowed Mode, NVIDIA Linux Legacy Drivers Updated

    Links for the day



  10. Breaking: EPO Vice-President Željko Topić Loses Defamation Case in Croatia

    The EPO's notorious Vice-President, whose appointment at the EPO is still raising some alarming questions, has just lost his case in Croatia (one of many cases), motivating us to accelerate coverage about the persona known as Željko Topić



  11. Qualys Starts Self-Promotional FUD Campaign, Naming a Bug That Was Already Fixed 2 Years Ago and Distros Have Covered With Patches

    Responding to the media blitz which paints GNU/Linux as insecure despite the fact that bugs were evidently found and fixed



  12. The Openwashing of Microsoft is Now Threatening to Eliminate the Identity of Free Software

    More openwashing of Microsoft, including in the corporate media, shows just to what great an extent and how quickly the old "Microsoft Open Source" Big Lie grows feet



  13. Links 27/1/2015: Plasma 5.2, Dell Precision With GNU/Linux

    Links for the day



  14. Microsoft's Media Attack on Free Software and GNU/Linux

    Brainwash war is still being waged by Microsoft and its friends to convince people that Windows is universally dominant and that Microsoft is now part of the Free software world



  15. Microsoft Accounting Practices After Fire Again, After Previous Abuses and Book-Cooking

    After the infamous IRS brawl comes another confrontation between Microsoft and the SEC, which is unhappy with Microsoft for seemingly cooking the books again



  16. Links 26/1/2015: Debian 8.0 “Jessie” RC1, Linux Kernel 3.19 RC6

    Links for the day



  17. Links 25/1/2015: Android Wear 5.0, Tizen in Bangladesh

    Links for the day



  18. IRC Proceedings: January 11th, 2015 – January 24th, 2015

    Many IRC logs



  19. Links 24/1/2015: Zenwalk Linux Reviewed, Netrunner 14.1 Released

    Links for the day



  20. The Latest 'Microsoft is Open Source' Propaganda a Parade of Lies

    Microsoft myth makers continue their assault on what is objectively true and try to tell the public that Microsoft is a friend of "Open Source"



  21. Apple -- Like Microsoft -- Not Interested in the Security of Its Operating Systems

    Apple neglected to patch known security flaws in Mac OS X for no less than three months and only did something about that vector of intrusion when the public found out about it



  22. As Battistelli Breaks the Rules and Topić Silences Staff, New European Parliament Petition for Tackling the EPO's Abuses is Needed

    The neglected (by EPO) Article 4a of the European Patent Convention (EPC) and the European Parliament petition/complaint against the EPO's crooked management



  23. Links 23/1/2015: Red Hat on IBM Power, Meizu Leaks With Ubuntu

    Links for the day



  24. Links 23/1/2015: Plasma 5.2, Manjaro 0.9-pre1

    Links for the day



  25. Microsoft is Dying Due to Free Software, Tries to Infect GNU/Linux With .NET and to Infect Moodle in Schools With Microsoft Office and OOXML Lock-in

    'Free' drugs (a proprietary software analogy) the new strategy of Microsoft in its latest battle against Free software, especially in schools where choice is a rarity (if not an impossibility), with the premeditated intention of forming dependency/addiction among young people



  26. Microsoft Symptoms of a Dying Company: More Boosters Depart, Back Doors Revealed, Microsoft's Outlook Cracked

    Bad news for Microsoft shortly before the marketing extravaganza served to cover much of it up



  27. The Collapse of European Patent Office Management Culminates With Resignations

    No blood is spilled, but even the management of the EPO is falling apart as the Director of Internal Communication is said to have just resigned



  28. New LCA Talk: Open Invention Network's Deb Nicholson on Software Patents and Patent Trolls

    Deb Nicholson's LCA talk is now publicly accessible



  29. Links 22/1/2015: GNU/Linux Sysadmin Opportunities, TraceFS Introduced

    Links for the day



  30. Links 21/1/2015: Andrew Tridgell, Torvalds Being Baited

    Links for the day


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts