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Vista May Put Anti-Spyware Companies Out

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the getting-ahead-of-ourselves dept.

392

Ant wrote to mention a C|Net article with an interesting premise: Windows Vista's tough approach to spyware may put anti-spyware companies out of business. From the article: "While this may be good news for buyers of Vista, it is not for anyone who makes a living from selling anti-spyware software. The worldwide market has boomed recently, reaching $97 million in revenue in 2004, up 240.4 percent from a year earlier, according to IDC. However, companies such as Webroot Software and Sunbelt Software are in for tough times, analysts said."

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...well... (5, Insightful)

BewireNomali (618969) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949575)

didn't msft put anti-spyware companies into business in the first place?

msft giveth, msft taketh away.

Re:...well... (-1, Redundant)

fm6 (162816) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949585)

Microsoft giveth, and Microsoft taketh away. Blessed be the name of Microsoft!

Re:...well... (-1, Redundant)

Hellasboy (120979) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949767)

Hallowed are the Microsoft

Humor? (2, Funny)

jgclark123 (812195) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949768)

Yes, I agree that just repeating what the parent said merits a +3 Funny...
Look before you mod, people.

Re:...well... (1, Informative)

babbling (952366) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949628)

Rather ungrateful like that, aren't they? I mean, it seems virus-scanner companies and MS have had a long relationship where they needed each other to survive. If virus scanners weren't around, Windows would probably have become unacceptable for a lot of businesses. Similarly, if Windows wasn't crap, virus scanner companies wouldn't have a market to target.

Now Microsoft is moving into their market, and will be selling both a problem and the solution to that problem. Nice.

Re:...well... (2, Funny)

Xymor (943922) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949760)

Funny, maybe this could be the new MS motto.
Microsoft, cleaning after itself. or Microsoft, fixing the problems you didn't have.

Re:...well... (0, Redundant)

bod1988 (925911) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949738)

Uhh.. The spyware makers put the antispyware people into business, not MS.

Re:...well... (4, Interesting)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949853)

But MS made the crap code that allowed spyware to work in the first place. It's all rather Mafia-esque, really:

  1. Write crap code that people buy anyway because you're a monopoly
  2. PROFIT!!
  3. Wait for spyware makers to exploit your crap code
  4. Write anti-spyware software, and sell it at extra cost
  5. Use your monopoly to give your anti-spyware program an unfair marketing advantage over 3rd-party equivalents (again)
  6. PROFIT AGAIN, because the users more-or-less have to fork out the "protection money."

And there is no "???" step.

Re:...well... (5, Insightful)

Pneuma ROCKS (906002) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949779)

I don't think spyware is going anywhere. Just as spam, it's here to stay. Many promises have been made by Microsoft in the past and they've been broken like little dry twigs. Giving them lots of credit, one might think they can eliminate and prevent all current forms of spyware, but there are always new ways, and they are always found. I hope Vista is more secure, but infalible? Not even close.

Re:...well... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949801)

So... Don't stop wars because peace puts the military out of business... Don't use alternative energy resources because it puts oil companies out of business... Don't use alternative healing methods because it puts pharmaceutical companies out of business... Don't drop any laws because it could put lawyers out of business... Hey, none of them could have ever anticipated that things could change for the better... Better let millions suffer than let a few become less rich... NOT!

Better idea (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949578)

Why doesn't Microsoft secure the OS properly and put the spyware companies out of business?

Re:Better idea (1)

jerw134 (409531) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949687)

Um, that's exactly what they're doing with Vista...

Re:Better idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949724)

Just like they did with Windows XP...

Re:Better idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949691)

Becuase Microsoft is a convicted monopolist, so Microsoft is required to bend over for every other company to allow them to profit.

If Microsoft starts putting Spyware and Spyware removal companies out of business by making their operating system incompatible with spyware applications or removing the need for anti-spyware addons, this would be a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act and may result in the forced breakup of Microsoft as this would clearly be anti-competitive behavior.

Just Fair (5, Insightful)

Zo0ok (209803) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949579)

If you are in business just because another company sells crappy products to lots of people you dont deserve to stay in business forever.

Re:Just Fair (4, Insightful)

ZeroExistenZ (721849) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949701)

It's called opportunism and demand for a service.

There's no "deserve" in doing business and trying to meet a demand in order to make money off of it.

Re:Just Fair (1)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949772)

Yea, it's sorta like worrying about a cure for AIDS putting pharmacutical companies producing current treatments out of business. Business should be secondary to progress.

Fair?? I don't think so. (1, Insightful)

ClickOnThis (137803) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949795)

If you are in business just because another company sells crappy products to lots of people you dont deserve to stay in business forever.

(1) Microsoft makes junk
(2) Other companies compensate to "un-junk" Microsoft
(3) Microsoft finally gets its act together
(4) ...
(5) Bankrupt!

Perhaps this is expected, but I'd hardly call it "fair". There have been companies that have based their business model on the above (Quarterdeck is a good example) and while I understand they can't expect to stay in business forever, it isn't "fair" that they should be driven out of business by a recalcitrant monopoly that uses its market position to eclipse their efforts.

What would be "fair" is for Microsoft to be driven out of business for making crap in the first place.

Re:Fair?? I don't think so. (1)

SeeMyNuts! (955740) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949840)


Vista hasn't really been around long enough to determine the "junkiness" of it, yet. Given the recent article about how little of Vista is sandboxed in a VM (.NET), odds are there are plenty of C or C++ gotchas in there. Also, the anti-spyware companies can still sell to the enormous installed base of Windows XP.
I do hope the anti-spyware companies were smart enough to stay privately owned, however, given this shift in business model.

How dare they! (5, Funny)

NitsujTPU (19263) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949582)

How dare Microsoft enhance the security of their product, putting poor companies that thrive on the shortcomings of Windows out of business?!?!

I, guess?

Re:How dare they! (3, Funny)

Voltageaav (798022) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949635)

Yeah, Windows Defender will be so much better than all the other programs people use, just like their firewall for XP, right?

Re:How dare they! (1)

pimpimpim (811140) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949638)

My guess would be that they won't, but they might make it impossible to install anti-spyware, by having a built-in spyware program that will remove or malfunction any other anti-spyware program you'd like to install.

Sure, viruses won't be able to run... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949583)

But will the program I write be able to?

Heck, will anything non-MS-approved be able to?

Let me be the first to say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949584)

Really hope so. Anti-* companies shouldn't really exist.

erm (5, Funny)

BitterAndDrunk (799378) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949587)

I thought it was still running Internet Explorer?

Analysis (4, Insightful)

jaymzter (452402) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949588)

Every version of windows since Windows NT was supposed to be better and more secure. Unfortunately that wasn't the case as we all know. How about we hold off on the hyperbole until Vista ships one of these days and we see how it actually works, not how some marketdroid claims it will.

Re:Analysis (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949623)

I don't know about *better*, given it is a subjective measure, but the NT line has generally improved in security with new releases. Win2000 was relatively indistinguishable from WinNT security-wise, but WinXP at least considered security in its design, and improved on it a little with SP1 and markedly with SP2.

I'm not saying it's all sunshine and rainbows; it's still not a fully locked down OS but they have been improving.

Re:Analysis (1)

DoraLives (622001) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949746)

I'm not saying it's all sunshine and rainbows; it's still not a fully locked down OS but they have been improving.

Methinks the Bad Guys have been improving at a faster rate. Just an opinion, mind you.

Re:Analysis (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949714)

FTA "We got a handle on spam. It still gets through, but it is such a small percentage now, we know how to deal with what gets through. That same thing will happen to spyware. It will be under control."

bolding mine. define "got a handle on spam" and "small" Personally I'd add the word NOT

Re:Analysis (4, Insightful)

nacturation (646836) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949742)

How about we realize that, in this case, CNet is just a shill for the Microsoft PR department.
 

They'll find a way. (4, Insightful)

bluemeep (669505) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949593)

For every unstoppable wall of protection, some jackass'll find a way around it. It's only a matter of time.

Re:They'll find a way. (5, Interesting)

richdun (672214) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949728)

You sound like a bitter Frenchman...

But true. The only sure protection is to build something that cannot be circumvented because of some law of physics. Software-driven systems will probably never reach this point. We just have to educate people to be safe enough that only the most inventive criminals can get in (and make it so that people understand how to be safe, not just install X because it will "protect" me from Y). It's just like common sense in anything else - know where not to go, what not to do, and if you are unsure, don't do it.

Re:They'll find a way. (4, Insightful)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949764)

It is a common misconception that Spyware/Adware programmers are "lamer", "script kiddie" types.

They are advanced programmers which reads slashdot, post to usenet etc too.

They are just "evil" or don't have/believe in ethics.

Unstoppable? (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949789)

Yes, that's true. However, I'm not sure why you're associating unstoppable protection with microsoft products; they've never earned such an accolade, that I'd heard of.

world's tinyiest violin (2, Insightful)

JeffSh (71237) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949594)

i don't care.

any company based on fixing something that shouldn't of happened in the first place has a fundamentally flawed business plan anyway.

if a company is founded based on the idea of eliminating something, then the business plan needs to take into account the chances of the company achieving its goal... eliminating things... or the need for it to eliminate anything becoming unnecessary.

im sorry, but i really don't care.

flawed? (3, Insightful)

Khashishi (775369) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949641)

Just because it can't be expected to last, doesn't mean it's flawed. Businesses need to adapt, and if a market for fixing broken products opens, it's sensible to meet that market before it goes away (so long as they don't spend too much in NRE).

Other areas too (1)

XanC (644172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949678)

This happens a lot in politics, for example. See the modern versions of NAACP, NOW, MADD...

Re:Other areas too (2, Insightful)

jmorris42 (1458) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949725)

> This happens a lot in politics, for example. See the modern versions of NAACP, NOW, MADD...

With the same result. Long after the original problem is solved the organization lives on, never able to just claim victory and disolve. Does anyone thing lowering blood alchol levels yet again will further reduce drunk driving deaths? Nope, but the only things government action could do aren't politically possible and MADD can't just admit that and pick a new cause to crusade for. The NOW gang long ago won everything they can possibly get through the sort of organized action they do, except defending the sacrement of abortion against all reason. [flamebait] Well no, abortion is defensible from a certain p.o.v., more accurately it is Roe v. Wade that flies in the face of reason, but to a NOW gang lesbian the difference has long disappeared.[/flamebait] The NAACP continues decades past when they had a legitimate problem to solve, pushing quota policies that just have to have MLK spinning in his grave. (Unless someone would like to explain how his vision of a colorblind society is consistent with the current practice of making skin color THE most important thing about a person.)

But now back ontopic; Does anyone really believe Vista will actually stop spyware? Just spawn a new generation which the dedicated spyware vendors will have to clean up behind. Nobody to date has ever went broke betting on Microsoft's incompetence.

fundamental flaw? (2, Insightful)

Danathar (267989) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949707)

The business plan may be wrong (unethical) but as to wrong, well they are STILL the dominant OS vendor. I have yet to see anything that MS has done wrong with windows SIGNIFICANTLY affect their market share.

As bad as windows has been and may continue to be, unless people can't play their games or surf the web I seriously doubt any problem in Vista will slow it's sales.

Re:world's tinyiest violin (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949848)

The one market that will never run dry is fixing mistakes of others.

Tough on spyware? (5, Funny)

linguizic (806996) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949595)

The only thing microsoft is tough on is stains, though oh so gentle on carpet. Wait, that's Bissel. That's right MS is tough on network administrators.

So what? (1)

ZachPruckowski (918562) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949596)

I have a hard time feeling sympathy for anti-spyware companies. I mean, if crime ended tomorrow, the police would have to get different jobs. It is unfortunate, but it's a small price to pay compared to the benefits. And it's not like Americans would throw the resulting money away, we'd spend it on something else, so the overall economy shouldn't suffer.

Re:So what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949622)

If the Scientologists at Sunbelt Software are hard-up for cash to pay for their OT-III courses, they could find another job. I hear that South Park has an opening.

They've fixed spam? (1, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949600)

"The spyware threat will definitely shrink or shrivel" as Vista gets adopted, said John Pescatore, an analyst with Gartner. "We got a handle on spam. It still gets through, but it is such a small percentage now, we know how to deal with what gets through. That same thing will happen to spyware. It will be under control."
Yeah, great. So Microsoft will "fix" spyware as well as they've "fixed" spam.

I don't see SpamAssassin fading away any time soon. So I wouldn't put any bets on on spyware companies (anti- or pro-) dying out.

Gartner is SO reliable (2, Informative)

symbolset (646467) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949832)

Here's what Fortune magazine thinks:

Ditch the Experts: http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_arc hive/2006/02/06/8367977/index.htm [cnn.com]

Which is not to say that experts are no different from you and me. They're very different. For example, they're much more confident in their predictions than nonexperts are, though they obviously have no reason to be.

Pretty clear, eh?

Out? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949603)

Yeah, right!

>>Anti-Spyware Companies Out
And Spyware Companies In?

Seriously, after big promises by Bill G long time back, if the existing security/tackling of spyware in Windows OS is what they have to show for, I am not convinced.

We will come to know better only when first Vista owned by Joe goes online! I don't believe any claims of securities from MS any more. We have heard it before.

slownewsday (2, Funny)

Janek Kozicki (722688) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949608)

that's where slownewsday tag comes handy :)

Done! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949708)

I couldn't help but add one...

Not really... (1)

iteachgeeks (915101) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949611)

Most people will not be able to upgrade to Vista due to the obsurd hardware requirements it demands. Also, when Microsoft integrates an tool such as Anti-Spyware or, as in the case of XP, the ability to handle ZIP files, they usually only offer the most basic of features. Third-party solutions tend to offer a more complete solution.

Re:Not really... (1)

jerw134 (409531) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949696)

Most people will not be able to upgrade to Vista due to the obsurd hardware requirements it demands.

Would you care to point out these "obsurd" hardware requirements demanded by Vista? Because last time I checked, the recommended hardware was just a couple steps up from XP, and the minimum was pretty much the same.

So Far Quite Good (1)

Quirk (36086) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949613)

MS Anti SpyWare Beta 1 has been good to me. I like the Advanced Tools too!

I've recently downloaded MS Defender [microsoft.com] , which I take it is the new moniker for their antispyware programme. Cross checking MS antispyware against LavaSoft has caught only one piece of spyware MS antispyware missed.

So, as infrequently as I say it, Good on you MicroSoft!

One missed is still too many! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949652)

One piece of missed spyware is still too many. That piece of malware could have potentially stolen your credit card number, transmitted sensitive files, or done any other of a number of very harmful activities.

To suggest that Microsoft's efforts are somehow "good" because they one miss one piece of spyware is very misleading, and also a very dangerous claim to make.

Re:One missed is still too many! (3, Insightful)

dink353 (747249) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949699)

One piece of spyware missed is too many, I agree, but is there a software vendor out there that produces a Anti-Spyware product that DOES get it all?

Vista may also... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949615)

...have no security holes, immunity to viruses and a free back of crack when you buy "Vista: High Flyer" version.

Who broke my window? (5, Interesting)

Realistic_Dragon (655151) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949617)

This is known as the Browk Window theory in Economics - that is, by running around breaking windows I create work for glaziers.

In actual fact were the windows not being broken the resources could be put to better use elsewhere - the time of the labourer and the money spent could be used to grow the economy rather than in the mantainance of existing infrastructure which is an activity that adds zero to the bottom line.

In this case not needing spyware companies will allow the workers and the capital emplyed to go and do something more efficent, in economic terms... such as innovating new and better spyware, seeing as how well Microsoft's other security related announcements have worked out :)

Re:Who broke my window? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949787)

That explanation to that "falacy" is weak though because it certainly helps the glaziers while if there was no window breaking going on the money would go to some other industry...

Capitalism isn't about growing the economy for the good of everyone it's about making profits for individual capitalists. Things that hurt the overall economy can be just dandy for individuals and if you noticed capitalism puts the individual first...

So your fallacy is a fallacy, sort of...or at least it's rather dishonest.

Oh noes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949619)

God forbid an OS publisher does something to prevent malicious software.

Nah, don't think so (4, Insightful)

KenDodd (961972) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949626)

Do they mean the same way that SQL Server put Oracle out? And Windows 200 killed Linux? Come, come - what utter twaddle. The "spyware/piss-you-off-ware" concocters will just shift paradigm.

Re:Nah, don't think so (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949806)

Do they mean the same way that SQL Server put Oracle out? And Windows 200 killed Linux? Come, come - what utter twaddle. The "spyware/piss-you-off-ware" concocters will just shift paradigm.

Those analogies are flawed because they are for competitors. The difference is anti-spyware relies on Windows. It's more like Netscape and Internet Explorer, if anything, but not even then because Netscape didn't rely on flaws in Windows to sell.

Yeah, sure (1, Redundant)

coffeechica (948145) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949630)

With some luck Vista will block the current spyware, but it's only a matter of time until someone finds their way around it again. It's still Microsoft, for God's sake, when have they managed to secure something for the last time? And once there is spyware leaking through, the anti-spyware companies come in again because you can hardly rely on MS to handle it in a timely fashion, given their track record.

Make something foolproof, and someone will make better idiots. Make something spyware-proof, and someone will program better spyware.

They can't make AntiSpyware compulsary.. (1)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949631)

And if they don't, then the spyware will survive, whether it be as a nifty screensaver or as a game* or a form filling bot or anything else.

If the MD of a large company wants to run something, whos going to stop him?

*Please note to play this game, you must instruct your security system to allow our connections, because we need to email your highscores between your friends!

Free anti-crudware (1)

HermanAB (661181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949639)

Well, even free anti-crudware wasn't able to put paid for anti-crudware companies out of business and why would miscreants suddenly stop writing crudware anyway?

Why stop now, just when I'm hating it?

I'll believe it (1)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949640)

when I see it.

Microsoft has been promising the moon and been delivering old moldy cheese for years. This sounds like a thinly veiled advertisement for MS - is anybody really going to cry that they don't have to run x+1 spyware detectors anymore?

But, MS has been reluctant to close all the holes in their system due to backwards compatibility, I believe? Things like ActiveX, that leave holes open for abuse. How did they get around this?

Of course it's an ad. (2, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949715)

Any "article" that quotes this guy is nothing but marketing:
Every new version of Windows offers some security improvements, but Vista more so, said Rob Enderle, an analyst with the Enderle Group. "Vista, because it was pretty much conceived during the toughest times for Microsoft with regards to malicious software, has the most protection in it compared to any of their platforms," he said.
Every version of Windows has been "conceived during the toughest times for Microsoft with regards to malicious software".

I still remember booting Win3.1 boxes from a floppy to get rid of the boot sector viruses.

Enderle knows nothing of security. Just because someone wrote some code during a rash of exploits does not mean that their code is any more secure.

Re:Of course it's an ad. (1)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949782)

Plus the headline is concluding something much too optimistic from the improvements described in detail by the article itself:

Microsoft is taking a multipronged approach to fight spyware. Unlike XP, Vista will run by default with fewer user privileges. People will have to invoke full, "administrator," privileges to perform tasks such as installing an application.

Also, Internet Explorer 7, included with Vista, will prevent silent installs of malicious code by stopping the browser from writing data anywhere except in a temporary files folder without first seeking permission. Lastly, Windows Defender will clean up any infections that do make it through... .... ....

  "The aftermarket for Windows anti-spyware is going to dry up almost completely," said Yankee Group analyst Andrew Jaquith. "Windows Defender is going to become the default anti-spyware engine, certainly for most consumers that have Vista machines."

Gartner's Pescatore agreed. "Integrating Windows Defender into Windows Vista is sort of the last nail into the standalone anti-spyware coffin," he said.


Yeah, so it's not actually saying spyware will stop for that platform - just that Microsoft is taking over that market i.e. what IE initially did to other browsers.....

Still won't use it except for at work... (1)

CristalShandaLear (762536) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949643)

...and that's because I'll have to.

OK, MS, you've got security licked. Now about this paying my firstborn Windows and then again for Office, licensing, EULA issues and this bit about being forced to register my software and not being able to swap out stuff on my box without calling you guys?

Nah, it's still a pass.

Re:Still won't use it except for at work... (2, Insightful)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949686)

Parent has a good point.. what does it matter what MS does for spyware? The rest of their draconian practices will still ensure that it doesn't stop spyware because people won't use it, no matter how good it is. Upgrading to Vista is not just a software upgrade, for myself and many others, its a hardware upgrade too. EVEN if I did run MS products at home, I still wouldn't get any value from antispyware in Vista LOLOLOL Sounds like more PR spin to make it seem worth the extra hardware costs and giving away your first born to run the new version of MS Windows....

I'll just take my chances with Linux thank you

So this is why the anti-virus people look to Macs (1)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949646)

Not.

While SP2 did a good job of doing the bare minimums (root/admin demotion and forcing firewalling), Microsoft has consistently demonstrated a casual approach to security, despite their claims to the contrary.

Don't short Symantec stock (but perhaps do it to McAfee if they continue to send out virus identifications that include Excel) or any of the rest. People will get email viruses, port 80/surfing bugs, and a myriad of other problems with Vista. It's been already demonstrated that the kernel code delta isn't that huge-- again, despite claims to the contrary that it's a NASA-level budgeted project. NASA continues to drop them in the drink, too.

firewall? (1)

user24 (854467) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949647)

Vista's anti spyware tools will put anti spyware companies out of business just like XP's firewall has put zone labs out of business... hang on...

Sure, just like Windows95 put AntiVirus companies (1)

AftanGustur (7715) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949654)

Just like Windows95 Put AntiVirus companies out of business because Win95 was the end to Viruses. Don't people remember anything anymore ? This is called "marketing"

glad that spam is gone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949658)

FTFA:

"...said John Pescatore, an analyst with Gartner. "We got a handle on spam. It still gets through, but it is such a small percentage now..."

if spyware is going the way of spam, there's no end in sight.

more FTFA:

"...Also, Internet Explorer 7, included with Vista, will prevent silent installs of malicious code by stopping the browser from writing data anywhere except in a temporary files folder..."

that's why wmf didn't affect vista. oh wait, it did. :/

No it can't (1)

sl4shd0rk (755837) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949661)

Not if you don't buy it.
The purchases you make/don't make today, form the options we have tomorrow.

Anti spyware companies will always have a market (1)

t0qer (230538) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949662)

Windows is just a big open target. Even if Vista patches every single hole; xp, 2000, nt40, nt3.51 ME 98 and 95 are still totally open and vulnerable to attack because the products have been end of lifed.

Truth is, a lot of people still use the outdated O/S's. There is tons of excuses why they do, everything from "it runs better" to "I don't want MS peeking in my nono spot" to "my old programs won't run on the new systems"

So these old O/S's will still supply sustainable income for the anti spyware companies because MS will not support them anymore.

Vista will still be a major target for spyware makers though because it will have a large install base. I doubt MS will be able to continuously keep up with the spywares creators.

In theory, it doesn't have to. (2, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949762)

Vista will still be a major target for spyware makers though because it will have a large install base. I doubt MS will be able to continuously keep up with the spywares creators.
In theory, they could just fix the core problem and the spyware would vanish as the old Microsoft OS's were replaced by newer ones.

But, from TFA:
Microsoft is taking a multipronged approach to fight spyware. Unlike XP, Vista will run by default with fewer user privileges. People will have to invoke full, "administrator," privileges to perform tasks such as installing an application.

Also, Internet Explorer 7, included with Vista, will prevent silent installs of malicious code by stopping the browser from writing data anywhere except in a temporary files folder without first seeking permission. Lastly, Windows Defender will clean up any infections that do make it through.

"It is three layers of protection," Wilson said.
Emphasis added. It's that line that tells me that they're not going to fix the core problem.

The "silent installs" in IE are a MAJOR source of spyware infections. But that's just because it is sooooooo easy. The "...without first seeking permission." bit tells me that the "silent installs" will be changed to "click here to continue" installs.

The browser should NEVER write anything, by default, to ANY directory other than TEMP and that should be set to non-execute.

But that would break all the ActiveX controls out there (many of which are used to distribute spyware).

They'd have done better just instituting a white list like NoScript does in FireFox.

Vista will NOT put them out of business (1)

acidrain69 (632468) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949673)

At least not anytime soon, though it will limit some of their market. How many people are still running Win95, 98, ME, and 2000?

Now, maybe Microsoft Defender/Antispyware might do it, since those run on older MS OS's.

I call FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949680)

Every version of windows ever released was hyped as more secure. We all know how that turned out.

Personally, I can't wait for Vista, because once it's released and exploited as much or more than XP or 2000 ever was, it just might cause the critical mass of awareness to finally expose MSFT to the masses for what they really are.

Not Bloody Likely (1)

omegashenron (942375) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949684)

As long as Micro$oft contemplates purchasing companies which produce spyware (Claria), you are going to need another anti-spyware product to remove M$ endorsed Spyware...

Microsoft would make the best antispyware app (1)

sycomonkey (666153) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949692)

Microsoft, first of all, has very intimite details on every possible attack vector to their OS (even if they will never be able to code them closed without completely rewriting the entire OS). They also have statistics, i would assume, from every Billy Bob Computer User calling them to complain about "windows popping up trying to sell me webcams". They are at a distinct advantage here. Of course the other anti-spyware companies are screwed.

Re:Microsoft would make the best antispyware app (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949860)

They are at a distinct advantage here. Of course the other anti-spyware companies are screwed.

Microsoft have one big handicap: belief in their product. This is the real reason why the "many eyes finds bugs" approach of OSS works well. Its not the number of people its the fact that people who have no stake in the product can go out and find the bugs.

It won't happen. (1)

cultrhetor (961872) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949703)

The reason that spyware targets MSWN is that it's where the market is. Vista may help for a while, but once enough people use it, spyware will target it, and eventually the problems will build to the current level. I have no pity for Microsoft: the advantages of being Microsoft far outweigh the negatives; when they start throwing money at something, they know there will always be more.

For now, anyway. If, someday down the line, MS is replaced by another corporate monster, said monster will become the newest target. In any field dominated by code, there will always be people who are willing and able to develop code that exploits some loophole, and every development that closes a loophole will open another.

They will still have a market (1)

surata (958203) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949704)

It has been said that the biggest competiors to Windows XP are ealier versions of windows. That said, I would safely assume that most PC's will continue to run versions of windows that predate Vista. These machines will need constantly updated antivirus and antispyware programs. So why worry?

Expecting perfection when none exists (1)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949705)

Existence of anti-(insert pest name) software company is inevitable. To expect otherwise is to expect perfection where none exists. Certainly Vista will make anti-pest software business environment more ... challenging. But till Microsoft achieve perfection, that market segment is not going away, not by a long shot.

Aha (1)

ikejam (821818) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949731)

This is the time when the business-minded and trechnically competent among us should make a kick ass anti-spyware, distribute it free , well may be with that optional google toolbar, may be even label IE as a security risk and recommend removal, and so on...grab the market.

ok it sounded much easier in my head. anyway to continue.

wait for vista. prove that MS new OS breaks the app, and gives a new alternative bundled. (if the app is any good, MS will probably be kind enough to make a good enough case for that - the breaking the app part)

Sue for the anti-trust crap.

Profit!!!

There aren't that many attack vectors... (1)

WoTG (610710) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949753)

It's not too surprising. For Vista to keep a clean system clean is a much easier task than cleaning up messed up systems of spyware. There are only a handful of places that spyware can insert itself -- the various startup folders, registry keys, services, drivers etc. Vista doesn't have to recognize the individual spyware, it just has to flag suspicious changes that aren't digitally signed by known companies and then provide a good interface for the end user to disable (or renable) them. Somewhat like the "TeaTimer" tool that SpyBot provides (which is great, BTW).

Nah,... (1)

mearzuh (933001) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949761)

Those companies will just find another hole in Windows and another way to make loyal customers pay for their mistake in buying the product in the first place. It's a win-lose situation for the customer, no matter how good Microsoft claims Vista to be.

Forget it (1)

Yaa 101 (664725) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949769)

Not that I care as Linux user, but since when does MS make secure stuff?

I predict the oposite, I think that more than one virus will be propegated the week that Vista comes out.

I think that the security companies will have a booming time with Vista.

MS's business structure and ethics can't allow security to work, ever.

Bad and Good News... (1)

netsharc (195805) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949773)

I can't believe the tone people are taking here against anti-spyware companies. There was a profile of the makers of Spybot S&D here in German TV last week. They started it because they were sick of spyware. These are the people who made the products that are helping a lot of people who got infected because they used sucky MS products. (Linux trolls be quiet, a high percentage of people can't even handle Windows, how would they survive with Linux). But somehow they're being portrayed as evil, money-hungry assholes. They're not Symantec, they're just small companies who I believe still have a lot of honesty in them.

If I were an anti-spyware maker, I'd be doing it because of my hate against spyware at first, and I'd be happy if MS can deliver it's promise with Vista. Afterwards I'd find another line of work, surely there are more interesting things to do (and products to create) than being frustrated at trying to clean up after yet another MS mess-up and Gator's/Claria's/etc's exploitation of it.

Re:Bad and Good News... (1)

Yaa 101 (664725) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949814)

But the fucks that buy your good running anti spyware do not share your feelings...
Most anti virus and spyware companies are businesses where making money is the one and only interest, anti spyware is just a vehicle.

Why do people like you fail to understand these facts of life.
Wake up to the real world where almost nobody likes their job and ony are into it for the money.
People like the makers of Spybot S&D are a very small minority light in our world of darkness.

b.t.w. Us Linux trolls can handle Windows fine, it is exactly the reason why we chose to leave windows behind, crap is crap, it does not matter how you dress crap.
Windows is and stays security hell, mainly because that is the business model of MS to sell leaky crap that allows various U.S.A. spy departments and corps to spy over foreign business.

Re:Bad and Good News... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949843)

> Linux trolls be quiet, a high percentage of people can't even handle Windows, how would they survive with Linux

My mother in law doesn't know how to install Windows or Linux. Yet she is able to use either of these and actually she is currently a Linux user (I installed it.). So please, you be quiet. Linux is not hard to use, it isn't even any harder to install than Windows, often even easier (try making a dual boot to Linux from Windows installation).

Is this some kind of joke? (1)

Hitchcock_Blonde (717330) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949783)

Um, isn't pretty much because of Windows' all-around crappiness that anti-spyware applications are even necessary? So, in typical MS fashion, they will treat the symptoms, not the disease and gain a whole new source of revenue in the process! The really sad part is, clueless Windows users will buy it hook, line and sinker.

What incentive does MS even have to keep the OS secure now that they have an "anti-spyware" service to sell?

Not out of business (1)

logik3x (872368) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949785)

I don't see how this news? Microsoft will package an anti-spyware with Vista... it doesn't mean it's going to be all that great... it's not because IE is included into windows that no one uses alternative browsers... and M$ anti-spyware will not fix any hole but just clean up the shit... the main reason of the spyware problem is the user having to much power and being stupid... not m$

Webroot Software and Sunbelt Software... (4, Insightful)

Aphrika (756248) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949788)

...sorry to be an ignoramus, but who?

As far as I'm concerned, if M$ are closing holes that shouldn't really be there, that's a Good Thing (tm).

I mean, these same spyware companies don't make a mint off other OSes do they, so why should they piggy-back a specific one? Isn't that essentially making money from a weakness? And if the weakness is removed, well... game over I guess, until M$ falls at the next hurdle and people make cash out of it. I mean, Mr. Norton seems to have had it quite easy for a while now...

Wankers feeding Wankers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949798)

I feel so sorry for them... :S and who knows if some of those aren't made so the antispyware can have profit....

About this kind of software competition (3, Interesting)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949799)

As for Windows security, I honestly think there should be exceptions of what Microsoft can bundle or not to maintain a good security. Yes, one can joke all day about security problems requiring tools like these in the first place, but Windows is a common OS, a huge hacker target, and now that this is the situation, I think MS should be allowed to include these kind of tools as an exception to software competition regulations.

I really don't mind if Microsoft would similarly put Windows antivirus companies "out of business" either. Yes, sucks to be them, but security is among the most important aspects of an operating system, and as important to me when I use an OS as basically the GUI itself.

Webroot (1)

teklob (650327) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949817)

I can't see Vista putting Webroot out of business any time soon, as the newly released MSN 9.2 includes a free version of the SpySweeper software.

When Vista SP1 comes out... (1)

MassEnergySpaceTime (957330) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949820)

There are a lot of creative people out there who will probably find new ways to hack Vista and IE7, and even bypass Windows Defender. All of these new hacks will lead to patches and fixes for Vista, IE7 and/or Defender.

I kinda can't wait for Vista SP1, which will inevitably come out, to see if "The spyware threat will definitely shrink or shrivel" actually comes true or not, as well as "It will be under control".

Thank god webroot is going to be hit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949824)

I have had the personal misfortune of being in a situation where I am required, not only to service their SpySweeper brand of products, but to recommend them like the best thing since the transistor to anyone who walks through the doors of the place I work.

SpySweeper is the reason we have to beg people to purchase more RAM with their computers -- the software is the most bloated out of anything I have ever seen, with an enormous skinned window, obnoxious popups, and about 3 or 4 services which it invokes. All told, the software is singularly responsible for about a 20% performance drop in day-to-day activities, on brand new machines.

Not only that, but it routinely misses upwards of 10% of spyware I've noted.

I pray for the day it goes by the wayside.

They can't win can they? (1)

Sathias (884801) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949835)

Its pretty much a given they Microsoft will be hacked on no matter what they do, frankly. I suppose if Bill's charities do the impossible and solve world poverty and hunger, people will be complaining that he has put World Vision out of business... embrace and extend baby!

About friggen' time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14949863)

Spyware should have never existed in the first place. But thanks to Microsoft, we can all enjoy the industries of Spyware and Anti-Spyware.

Well, duh! (2, Informative)

Dracos (107777) | more than 8 years ago | (#14949865)

Microsoft created the need for these companies to exist. The near destruction of that need is a side effect of MS finally learning that security is part of the development process.

But as long as there is Windows, there will be a need for 3rd party Windows security software.

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