10.10.10

EU Concerns Highlight Need to Remove Windows From the Network

Posted in Europe, Microsoft, Security, Vista, Vista 7, Windows at 1:38 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Flag of Europe

Summary: With Stuxnet running rampant and security issues at Microsoft reaching an all-time high, employees of the company attempt to distract from the fact that Windows — not “sick” PCs — is the cause

ACCORDING TO this report, “EU calls Stuxnet ‘paradigm shift’” and there is need for change.

While official U.S. response has been comparatively mild, the European Union’s cybersecurity agency says Stuxnet represents a “paradigm shift” in critical infrastructure threats and that current defense philosophies need to be reconsidered.

In a statement released yesterday, Udo Helmbrecht, the executive director of ENISA (European Network and Information Security Agency), said that as a “new class and dimension of malware,” Stuxnet represents a “paradigm shift.”

“The attackers have invested a substantial amount of time and money to build such a complex attack tool,” he said. “The fact that perpetrators activated such an attack tool can be considered as the ‘first strike,’ i.e. one of the first organized, well prepared attacks against major industrial resources. This has tremendous effect on how to protect national” infrastructure in the future.

CNET’s Elinor Mills no longer 'forgets' to mention Windows and “let’s hope the[y] draw the right conclusion about Windows” was Glyn Moody’s response to the above.

Stuxnet has become somewhat of a blessing to GNU/Linux because it helps more and more people see the serious ramifications of Windows use. Stuxnet is very much alive and there is no solution to it yet. We wrote about the subject in:

  1. Ralph Langner Says Windows Malware Possibly Designed to Derail Iran’s Nuclear Programme
  2. Windows Viruses Can be Politically Motivated Sometimes
  3. Who Needs Windows Back Doors When It’s So Insecure?
  4. Windows Insecurity Becomes a Political Issue
  5. Windows, Stuxnet, and Public Stoning
  6. Stuxnet Grows Beyond Siemens-Windows Infections
  7. Has BP Already Abandoned Windows?
  8. Reports: Apple to Charge for (Security) Updates
  9. Windows Viruses Can be Politically Motivated Sometimes
  10. New Flaw in Windows Facilitates More DDOS Attacks
  11. Siemens is Bad for Industry, Partly Due to Microsoft
  12. Microsoft Security Issues in The British Press, Vista and Vista 7 No Panacea
  13. Microsoft’s Negligence in Patching (Worst Amongst All Companies) to Blame for Stuxnet
  14. Microsoft Software: a Darwin Test for Incompetence
  15. Bad September for Microsoft Security, Symantec Buyout Rumours
  16. Microsoft Claims Credit for Failing in Security
  17. Many Windows Servers Being Abandoned; Minnesota Goes the Opposite Direction by Giving Microsoft Its Data
  18. Windows Users Still Under Attack From Stuxnet, Halo, and Zeus

“Stuxnet Used in Black Hat SEO Campaigns” says Ziff Davis which also has this new slideshow-type article about Stuxnet.

That link that you click on for information about the Stuxnet worm might be leading you to a malicious site.

It’s the dark side of search engine optimization; attackers boosting the search engine rankings of malicious sites so they can lure visitors with the promise of interesting news. In this case, it’s the Stuxnet worm that is being used as bait.

Stuxnet has been a regular presence in security articles since it was discovered this summer. The worm was designed to target industrial control systems, and its complexity has made it a source of interest for security researchers and IT admins alike.

As expected, Microsoft is trying to distract from Windows as the source of this problem. In fact, it tries to take advantage of this fiasco and portray itself as a rescuer. As we showed some days ago, Microsoft steps up as the so-called ‘solution’ to the problem which Microsoft itself helped create and the old nonsense from Charney (he started this in [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9]) has washed the Web, leading to responses like Marco’s “Computer health certificates for surfing the Internet? Are you serious?”

First of all, he has managed to turn a problem that today, in large part, is caused by defects in his company’s products in something that any freedom-loving government would really love to fix for you. This is genius at work. Because presenting (1) virus-ridden computers as “sick PCs”, that is as a “public health” issue that should be fixed by “legal frameworks” that define and enforce “trusted computers systems” is just a way to mutilate computers so they can’t do anymore what you want, but only what somebody else likes. In other words, this proposal could give governments a reason to fix Microsoft problems with their (as in “yours”) money because it also does something else they want. Not to mention that movie and music corporations would surely insist to add “no copy” mechanisms to the “health” checklist.

Secondly, Mr Charney comes and proposes this… just seven months after an equally absurd and offending solution to the same problem, that is taxing ALL citizens to fix Microsoft’s security problems. I am speechless, really.

John Gilmore says: “I’d recommend merely ignoring his ideas til they sink like a stone. But it looks like Intel and Microsoft are actively sneaking up on the free Internet and the free 10% of the computer market by building in these techniques and seeking partnerships with governments, ISPs, telcos, oligopolists, etc to force their use. So some sort of active opposition seems appropriate.”

Here is what SJVN wrote about it:

My friend Richi Jennings is fond of the idea that users with malware-infected PCs should be cut off from the Internet. To this, I say not just “Yes,” but “Hell yes.” And, as he pointed out, other people are getting behind this idea of helping to clean up the litter of spam, malware, and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks that junks up the Internet highway.

Comcast, as Jennings pointed out, will be letting malware-infected users know that they’ve got garbage on their hard disk, but not keeping them off the net. Darn it.

If this was implemented, up to about half of the world’s computer users would get disconnected. It’s really that serious. Despite Microsoft’s many promises for the best part of a decade, things are not improving. Microsoft does not reveal just how many holes exist in its software (there is silent patching which Microsoft keeps hidden), but this month it claims to be breaking the record:

i. Microsoft Plans Biggest Patch Tuesday Security Update Ever

Microsoft is poised to break its record for the most Patch Tuesday security bulletins ever for the second time in 2010.

On Oct. 12, the company is set to release 16 security bulletins to cover a total of 49 vulnerabilities in Windows, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Office and the .NET framework. In August, the company set a new record with 14 bulletins. That update fixed 34 security holes across a number of products.

ii. MS planning Patch Tuesday whopper: 16 bulletins, 49 vulnerabilities

This month’s batch of security patches from Microsoft will be a record-breaking one: 16 bulletins addressing a whopping 49 security vulnerabilities.

Windows XP may no longer be sold, but this Swiss cheese of an operating system is here to cause trouble for several more years:

Although Windows XP will no longer be for sale this doesn’t mean that existing users will be left high and dry. Microsoft has said that it will provide support for Windows XP until April 2014. Windows Vista support will also end in April 2014.

Notice what Microsoft is doing with Vista. Support gets cut on the same date, despite the releases being almost 6 years apart. What does that tell people who were foolish enough to fall for Microsoft’s hype and bet on Vista? It’s also a potential lesson about Vista 7. A reasonable upgrade route is to GNU/Linux and Ubuntu 10.10 will be released very shortly.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. End-to-End Encryption and Facebook Cannot Coexist

    Projects that promise us privacy but take money (and sometimes staff) from Facebook and Google are sending or beaming the wrong signal



  2. Twitter is Hiding Techrights and Partly Shadowbans Yours Truly

    Based on many systematic (and reproducible) tests, Twitter has taken up yet another notch its covert censorship regime, which optimises — based on some vague criteria — what people can see and cannot see



  3. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, January 27, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, January 27, 2021



  4. Links 28/1/2021: Stable Kernels and Sudo Bugfixes

    Links for the day



  5. Showing Solidarity With FSFE Survivors

    What does justice look like?



  6. IBM is Throwing Away Red Hat's 'de Facto Standard' Status in Servers, Wrongly Assuming People Can't (or Won't) Go Elsewhere

    This new video is over half an hour long and it’s a discussion of IBM’s self-harming (shot-in-the-foot) move, which it already seems to regret



  7. Why 6 Screens and 6 Virtual Desktops

    An explanation of how I use computers and how I distribute tasks (across screens and across virtual desktops)



  8. Red Hat Developer Network Promoting Microsoft's Proprietary Software, Sometimes by Mass-Mailing People

    Red Hat is doing a disservice to people who subscribe to E-mail newsletters; those people are almost never into Microsoft's proprietary software, which they want to get away from



  9. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 26, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 26, 2021



  10. Links 26/1/2021: Mozilla Firefox 85.0, Tails 4.15, Zentyal Server 7.0, GNOME 40 Alpha

    Links for the day



  11. Instead of Making Access to COVID-19 Solutions Easier Bill Gates Has Made It Harder (Patent Profits)

    Counterproductively — and at a great cost to human civilisation — Bill Gates has once again put profits and monopoly ahead of global goals such as collective health



  12. We Need More Documents Leaked to Know Intel (From the) Inside

    We invite more leaks from the belly of the beast "chipzilla", seeing that it is becoming a drone of Microsoft again, yearning for the "Wintel" days instead of moving on to a world dominated by GNU/Linux and Free/libre software



  13. Why GNU/Linux Users (and the Public at Large) Should Support Leaking/Whistleblowing Sites (Including Wikileaks)

    To demonstrate the value of "scientific journalism" (a term apparently coined by Wikileaks) we take a look at Red Hat's response to embarrassing leaks (demonstrating what a scam their certification and examination programmes really are)



  14. EPO President António Campinos is Still Not Listening, According to Internal EPO Documents

    Increasingly arrogant and unaccountable management of Europe's second-largest institution (EPO) has left staff disillusioned but still defiant; there's clearly unsuitable or unfit-for-purpose management at the EPO, self-selecting based on nepotism/loyalty so as to cover up abuses



  15. Why You Should Give Falkon (the Web Browser) a Chance on GNU/Linux, BSD, or Windows

    In this crazy new world where advertisers are the real customers and Web users ("audiences") have been reduced to mere products we need a browser that isn't controlled by a company; try Falkon



  16. Kluwer Patent Spin and Distortion of Facts (Regarding UPC and More)

    Kluwer Patent Blog disgraces the firm that puts its name on it; instead of sticking to facts they're distorting the facts and the sole/principal goal is to manipulate/mislead the public and public servants



  17. Links 26/1/2021: 4MLinux 35.1, GParted 1.2, Gnuastro 0.14

    Links for the day



  18. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 25, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, January 25, 2021



  19. It's Wrong to Assume Red Hat Competes With Microsoft

    The community ought to stop pretending that one monopoly seeks to replace another despite close partnerships (some would say "collusion") between the two



  20. EPO Staff Representation Complains That EPO Management Exploits Pandemic and 'House Arrests' to Overwork Staff, Lower Quality

    The EPO keeps breaking its promises to workers; not only are key employees seeing their net salary cut (inflation factored in) but pensioners too are being robbed and in the meantime the total time spent on work is increasing



  21. Fake News is Not a 'Wing' Thing

    The two-party corporate-led system (and media) would have us obsess/bicker about accuracy of news based on some binary/dual system of blind loyalty rather than underlying facts and priorities



  22. Links 25/1/2021: Huawei on GNU/Linux, NuTyX 20.12.1, Whisker Menu 2.5.3, Lutris 0.5.8.3, Linux 5.11 RC5

    Links for the day



  23. Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt (FUD) in ZDNet is the Norm

    ZDNet continues to emit lots of garbage 'journalism', in effect Microsoft PR and what's known as "black PR" for Linux; just like Bleeping Computer, which ZDNet hired this writer from, there's no adherence to facts, just smears and innuendo



  24. Truth Tellers Aren't an Enemy of Free Software

    There's a perpetual attack on people who speak out against actors and corporations in positions of great power, however subtle and indirect those attacks may seem on the surface (they don't wish to be held accountable for defaming activists)



  25. The Linux Foundation, With Over 124 Million Dollars in Annual Revenue, is in Trouble Because of the Pandemic, So It's Trying to Reinvent Itself as Training and Certifications Outfit

    With mountains of cash and a Public Relations (PR) or marketing business model the so-called 'Linux' Foundation became reliant on travel, lodging, booths and speeches on sale; COVID-19 is a great risk to that business model



  26. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 24, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, January 24, 2021



  27. Our Move Further Away From the World Wide Web, the Browser Monopolies, HTTP, and HTML

    The World Wide Web (WWW) is going down a bad path and a clearly regressive direction; the solution isn't going 'retro' but exploring more sophisticated systems which are robust to censorship (localised or globalised) and downtime (related to censorship) while reducing surveillance by leveraging encryption at the endpoints



  28. Important Issues Not Entertained in the Community, Especially Critics of the Status Quo

    here's corporate infiltration inside communities (for oligarchy hunts volunteer, unpaid labour) and those who speak about that as a threat to our cause and objectives are painted as misguided outcasts who must be ignored



  29. Internet Origins of the Mob

    Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock



  30. When Proprietary Software Users Dictate the Freedom-Leaning Communities

    Fedora doesn't care about software freedom and its steward (or parent company) is sometimes imposing proprietary software on staff; they've quit caring


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts