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


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


  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    January 26, 2010 at 11:29 am


    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.



  2. Dennis Murczak said,

    January 26, 2010 at 4:15 pm


    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


    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



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

What Else is New

  1. EPO and the “Iberian Connection”: Patricia García-Escudero Márquez - Battistelli's Pet Chinchilla on the Boards of Appeal Committee?

    Why the Boards of Appeal Committee has begun showing prominent signs that it is anything but independent and capable of standing up to Battistelli (or his circle at the Office, which includes the “Iberian Connection")

  2. Links 23/10/2016: Alcatel's New Android Smartphones, Another Honorary Doctorate for Stallman

    Links for the day

  3. Open Letter Exposing the Farce Which Was Battistelli's 'Social Conference' Coinciding With Further (New) Attacks on EPO Staff Representatives

    A detailed letter reveals legitimate concerns expressed by staff representatives at the EPO ahead of the so-called Social Conference, in which we have highlighted severe factual flaws

  4. Translation of Latest Rant From French MP Philip Cordery About Benoît Battistelli's Abuses at the EPO

    Philip Cordery crosses horns with Benoît Battistelli, who has become a source of embarrassment for France with his autocratic tendencies and misguided policies that rapidly ruin the European Patent Office (EPO)

  5. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC ‘Study’: Leaked Document Shows PwC's Dishonesty and Misrepresentation of EPO Staff

    An in-depth analysis (but not comprehensive, just preliminary) of the so-called 'study' from PwC, which basically did what it was paid for (pay to say)

  6. Links 22/10/2016: Deus Ex for GNU/Linux, Global DDoS (DNS)

    Links for the day

  7. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC ‘Study’: Survey Comparison Shows Serious Deterioration and Efforts by PwC to Disguise the Truth

    The latest output from PwC turns out to be even worse than initially thought, indicating that not only did it find a degradation in the EPO but also attempted to hide/obscure it

  8. EPO Teaser - The "Iberian Connection" - Some Photos of García-Escudero and His Royal/Government Connections

    A look at the undeniably close connections between Mr. García-Escudero and the most powerful people in Spain

  9. Disruption to Site's Service

    A technical note about why Techrights has not been publishing many articles recently

  10. Links 21/10/2016: MPV 0.21, Mad Max for GNU/Linux

    Links for the day

  11. EPO Caricature: Battistelli's High Five

    Another cartoon about the sad state of the EPO

  12. Battistelli Ruins Not Only the EPO But Also the Whole of Europe By Ushering in Software Patents That Patent Trolls Love So Much

    Battistelli's bad leadership at the EPO threatens to bring to Europe all the ills and menaces of the patent system in the United States

  13. EPO Spokesman Lies to IP Watch in Order to Save Face and Save the King (Battistelli)

    Rewriting history (revisionism) regarding Battistelli and what was demanded amidst abusive behaviour from him

  14. Unitary Patent (UPC) is Dead, But 'Managing IP' and Selfish Patent Law Firms Still Try to Resurrect It

    The latest attempts to shore up the Unitary (or Unified) Patent Court and who's behind it other than the usual suspects

  15. Links 20/10/2016: Linux 4.10 Preview, ONF and ON.Labs to Merge

    Links for the day

  16. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC 'Study': The Raw Outcome Shows Distortion of the Facts at the EPO's Notorious 'Social Conference'

    Results of the Staff Survey carried out by PwC, in order to provide some propaganda for Battistelli's expensive Social Conference

  17. Addendum: EPO's Alberto Casado Cerviño, WIPO's Francis Gurry, and EUIPO's Archambeau

    Photos taken as part of an IP event which took place in Riga (Latvia) in March 2015

  18. Worrisome Connections Between EPO VP2 Alberto Casado Cerviño and Patricia García-Escudero Márquez

    Exploring the potential conflicts of interests implicating the EPO's Boards of Appeal Committee

  19. Site's Infrastructure Under Attack and Upgrades Ahead of Major New Publications

    Protections for the Web site have been improved and capacity increased in order to avoid or at least prepare for another week of abusive/spam traffic

  20. Team Battistelli's Conspiracy Theory: SUEPO is Behind Everything, EPO Management is Trying to Tell the Media

    Attempts to blame SUEPO, the staff union of the EPO, even though SUEPO has nothing to do with articles that are critical of the EPO while many thousands of EPO employees are disgruntled

  21. Links 19/10/2016: Canonical Livepatch Service, Plasma Plans

    Links for the day

  22. The 'Sarah Sharps' of Microsoft: Not the Kind of Scandal the Media Cares Enough to Write About

    Another example of the large (industrial) scale of sexual discrimination at Microsoft -- a company that tries to advertise itself as diverse or tolerant and stigmatise Free/Open Source software (FOSS) as intolerant and/or not diverse

  23. EPO Caricature: EQE Questions

    The latest EPO cartoon, this time about European qualifying examination (EQE)

  24. The Long History or Seeds of Control by Fear and Punishment at the EPO

    The latest hogwash from Team Battistelli (Pinocchio), the latest instance of software patents promotion by EPO Principal Director, and an old (decade-old) nugget of information from the Forum for Principal Directors

  25. Subject of the European Patent Office's Abuses Raised in European Parliament by Ulrike Müller (ALDE)

    A local copy of a bunch of questions asked less than a month ago by Ulrike Müller at the European Parliament, regarding the unacceptable state of affairs at the European Patent Office (EPO)

  26. French Article About the EPO "Crisis"

    Le Monde, which covered EPO suicides and nervous breakdowns a year and a half ago, revisits the subject

  27. Battistelli Wants Us to Believe a Patent Office in a Freefall (EPO) is “Stronger and More Sustainable”

    Still in denial (or self-deluding for self indulgence), Battistelli writes about the EPO as though everything is rosy and people are happy

  28. Leaked Documents Shed More Light on What Happened to Alison Brimelow and How Battistelli Rose to Power

    How Battistelli's (almost) all-male (and all-white, mostly French) management came into being, not too long after Ms Alison Brimelow got elbowed out the Office

  29. Leaked: Outcomes of 149th Administrative Council's Meeting at the European Patent Organisation

    The raw details or a summary thereof, based on the above which serves to confirm what we wrote about several days ago, right after the quarterly meeting had ended

  30. Danish Press Coverage of the European Patent Office and the Problems Explored by Techrights

    Jesper Kongstad does virtually nothing to deny the arguments (or "accusations") and instead alludes to the style of the writings about him


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


Recent Posts