Tuesday, February 03, 2004

This would open a can of worms if it ever got distributed to the non techies!

Tim Mullen writes this article for Security Focus
and suggests that Microsoft not only drop all support for Windows 9x and previous but also force users using it to upgrade.

His argument makes sense not only from a security perspective, but also a user pays perspective. Effectively those of us who have bought recent versions of Microsoft products, and are relatively security conscious are paying for the support of all those people who just don't care. These are also the people who forward bulk joke emails and executable attachments that are cute and that will cause you to lose all your friends and your left kidney to contract cancer spontaneously if you don't pass them on in the next five minutes. I think these people should have their email addresses suspended - like for bad driving - but for bad emailing! The mydoom and novarg viruses are "unknowingly" propagated by these people and we pay for the cost of fixing them ultimately because that cost must be borne by the companies and recovered from their customers.
I actually have a client who "accident's opened the attachment and got mydoomed". I have another who was so security conscious she wouldn't open any email at all until I explained that it was only attachments she needed to worry about if she was up to date with her antivirus updates. This is erring on the side of caution and should be encouraged. She could get merit points, while the other client should get demerit points. Hours of wasted time fixing hers and other PCs on the local network because of the "urge to open"!

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