Tuesday, January 03, 2006
Don’t Blame Me, I’m Only the Windows User
Windows PCs face ‘huge’ virus threat
By Kevin Allison in San Francisco
Computer security experts were grappling with the threat of a new weakness in Microsoft's Windows operating system that could put hundreds of millions of PCs at risk of infection by spyware or viruses.
That’s from today’s FT.com—the web site of the Financial Times of London.
I know some readers will accuse me of grinding my ax on poor old Microsoft again, just a few days after my final 2005 post stating that the undermining of the Microsoft desktop software monopoly was the biggest news story of the year—but believe me, I didn’t intend to start the new year attacking the Evil Empire.
It's just that stuff, as they say, happens. And it happened over the weekend, when my Microsoft Hotmail inbox started automatically moving emails from my inbox to my trash can.
I am not making that up.
For about half a day I thought the unusually small number—i.e. zero—of emails in my Hotmail inbox merely reflected the fact that not a lot of people were cranking out emails over the weekend.
But then in the course of finishing up year-end business I sent myself an email from a Google Mail account established last year as a back-up to Hotmail.
The email never arrived.
Actually, what I discovered was that it had arrived but was immediately transferred to my trash can—without me doing a thing.
This morning I found 6 emails in my Microsoft inbox, and 26 unread, unseen emails in my Microsoft trash can.
I suppose I should thank Bill Gates for deciding what is really important and what can be discarded without viewing.
I also suppose I should contact Microsoft’s so-called Help Desk and tell them about my new Hotmail problem. But if they are as useless as they were the last time I had a major Hotmail problem (it took me 4 weeks to receive a response to my email requesting help), I would rather spend the time simply moving the rest of my email business to the Google Mail account I established during the last major Hotmail problem.
And if readers still think I am being too tough on Microsoft here, well, check out the following from today’s FT.com article:
Unlike most attacks, which require victims to download or execute a suspect file, the new vulnerability makes it possible for users to infect their computers with spyware or a virus simply by viewing a web page, e-mail or instant message that contains a contaminated image.
I Am Not Making This Up
© 2005 Jeff Matthews
The content contained in this blog represents the opinions of Mr. Matthews. Mr. Matthews also acts as an advisor and clients advised by Mr. Matthews may hold either long or short positions in securities of various companies discussed in the blog based upon Mr. Matthews' recommendations.
Posted by Jeff Matthews at 8:10 AM