Thursday, January 06, 2005

Microsoft in the Virus Arena ...

Microsoft Corp., whose popular Windows software is a frequent target for Internet viruses, is offering a free security program to remove the most dangerous infections from computers.
The program, with monthly updates, is a step toward plans by Microsoft to sell full-blown antivirus software later this year. Microsoft said Thursday that consumers can download the new security program from the company's Web site - - and that updated versions will be offered automatically and free each month. It will be available starting Tuesday. Also, Microsoft offered Thursday a free program to remove "spyware," a category of irritating programs that secretly monitor the activities of Internet users and can cause sluggish computer performance or popup ads. Microsoft said the virus-removal program will not prevent computer infections and was never intended to replace the need for traditional antivirus software, such as flagship products from McAfee Inc. or Symantec Corp.
MS has approached the AV market space very strange, and certainly could have improved its OS' security stance many times more and for much less outlay than the cost of its GeCAD AV purchase _AND_ have left the annoying, always on a hiding to nothing and expensive to support end- user market to the traditional AV players interested in those crumbs. This was, of course, largely predictable given MS' long history of never inventing anything terribly useful and never doing anything terribly creative and became entirely predictible when it became clear that MS "needed" to buy an AV developer.
Being in the traditional AV marketplace (and the emerging anti-spywaremarketplace) will make MS' OSes no more "secure" or "reliable" or "trustworthy" than DOS ever was.
Microsoft please take my advise ... you will only win the battle if you could make your OSes more secure!