Microsoft has revealed that a group of threats affected Windows 7 and Windows Vista users more than Windows XP users. The company’s recent Security Intelligence Report (SIR) says that Malware infections became higher last year mainly due to three threats. The report also indicated that Windows 7 and Vista was more vulnerable than Windows XP.
microsoft windows 7 xp security infection
According to Microsoft’s Security Intelligence Report (MSIR): Volume 16, three threats namely Rotbrow, Brantall and Sefnit together caused several malware attacks in third and fourth quarters of 2013. These malwares were initially distributed through peer-to-peer (P2P) filesharing networks and were later disguised as a benign application. Sefnit is known to be a bot that allows a hacker to perform his attacks remotely. This malware was integrated to trustable softwares by attackers to perform illegal things like click fraud, Bitcoin mining and redirecting search results.
The infections on Windows computers measured by cleaned per thousand (CCM) increased from 5.6 in Q3 to 17.8 in Q4 of 2013 on the back of the Win32/Senfit click fraud bot. Another malware named Win32/Rotbrow claiming users to prevent them from unwanted browser addons was also reason for these infections. Win32/Brantall also contributed to malware attacks which acts as an installer for legitimate applications but also bundles harmful programs.
The overall damage was done by Rotbrow which targets Internet users. It was responsible for the quick increase in CCM metric on Q4 of last year. Windows 7 and Vista showed higher rates of CCM than Windows XP computers, this was an interesting point noted on MSIR. The report shows an infection rate of 25.9 percent for Windows 7, 32.4 percent for Vista and 24.2 percent for Windows XP. Although it indicates that Windows XP is less vulnerable to these threats, it doesn’t mean that everyone should switch to XP.
Regarding this, Microsoft explained : “The rise in the encounter rate was in line with the trend seen in previous quarters, but the infection rate increased by a threefold increase, and the largest quarter-to-quarter infection rate increase ever measured by [Microsoft’s] Malicious Software Removal Tool (MSRT).”
For more information about the security risks of Microsoft’s latest operating system when compared to old ones, you can read their official Security Intelligence Report.
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