With Microsoft Patched, Hackers Turning Elsewhere
Online criminals turned their attention to antivirus software and media players like Apple Computer’s iTunes in the first three months of 2005, as they sought new ways to take control of peoples’ computers, according to a survey released Monday. Hackers continued to poke new holes in Microsoft’s popular Windows operating system, but they increasingly exploited flaws in software made by other companies as well, the nonprofit SANS Institute found.
As more Windows users agreed to receive security upgrades automatically, hackers looked to take advantage of other software programs that might not be patched as frequently, according to the leader of the cybersecurity training and research organization. “Operating systems have gotten better at finding and fixing things and auto-updating, so it’s less fertile territory for the hackers,” said SANS Chief Executive Alan Paller.
Malicious hackers exploit security holes to lift credit card numbers and other sensitive personal information from PCs, and they commandeer computers to send out spam and pornography.
Damn that Bill Gates for fixing his software!