A recent report of Microsoft states that computers which use Windows 7 or Windows Vista as operating system are more likely to be infected by malware than computers with Windows XP.
Taking a quick look on the figures from Microsoft’s biannual Security Intelligence Report, an infection rate of 2.42% is noticed for computers that run Windows XP while 3.24% and 2.59% for Windows Vista and Windows 7, this only in the last quarter of 2013.
In order to account for the different numbers of computers that run each version of the operating system, the data had to be “normalized”. Therefore, Windows 8 computers show an infection rate of 1.73% while Windows 8.1, the latest version, shows 0.08%.
Also, Microsoft states that Windows 7 and Vista are affected by a new threat coming from ‘Rotbrow’ malware that targets internet browsers.Security experts do not necessary agree, saying that Windows XP doesn’t offer more security than recent operating systems.
Graham Cluley spoke to someone from The Independent and concluded that users, even if they use a more modern version of Windows, are still at risk just by using the internet in a greater extent.
“We’re hopeful that the number of Windows XP computers is rapidly diminishing, and that fewer and fewer of them are being used to regularly access the internet,” said MrCluley.
“If you think about it, if you have an old creaky computer still running Windows XP and a Windows 7 computer – which one are you more likely to be using regularly?”
Cluley draws attention regarding the statistics from Microsoft’s report saying that Windows XP was still receiving regular security updates at that time. These fixes stopped to be sent since April, 2014.
The software giant will release on the 13th of May security patches which will not include updates for Windows XP(this is a first). This step might highlight the downsides of the operating system.
For those who use recent Windows operation systems, in order to block malware, it is recommended to download Microsoft’s Enhanced Mitigation Experience Tool-kit (EMET)and for those who have Windows XP still running, to upgrade.