Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Windows 7 Security Bug Emerges at Worst Time for Microsoft

Don Reisinger writes on eWeek:

In what could be a major issue for Microsoft as it prepares for the release of Windows 7 next month, the company announced that it has found a bug that could hijack PCs running Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008 and Windows 7.

Security researchers found that the issue affects the Windows 7 Release Candidate. However, the company was quick to assert that it has found that the bug won't harm Windows 7 RTM—the version on its way to store shelves.

"An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system," a Microsoft advisory said. "Most attempts to exploit this vulnerability will cause an affected system to stop responding and restart."

Although it's nice to hear that the Windows 7 versions that will be shipping to store shelves won't face this problem, it underlies a major issue that Microsoft might need to face going forward: security issues, no matter the type or potential harm, could severely impact Microsoft's ability to attract consumers and especially the enterprise to the company's new operating system. At this point, a security issue that makes buyers think twice about Windows 7 could be a real hindrance to Microsoft as it tries to rebuild its operating system's standing in the marketplace.

More here.


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