Microsoft Corp. will face more than 40 vulnerabilities in Windows Vista next year, as the operating system climbs past the 10% market-share milestone and malware authors really start to find flaws, a McAfee Inc. analyst said today.
"Most of the current malware has ignored Vista," said Craig Schmugar, a threat researcher at McAfee's Avert Lab -- but that's not because the operating system has been frustratingly secure. In fact, Schmugar argued, Vista has been a worthwhile target in the first year of its release.
"These people make their living writing malware or attacking users," he said. "They're driven by financial motivation, and only when market share has an impact will they really work on Vista."
At some point in 2008, Vista will own a tenth of the desktop operating system market, Schmugar predicted. The milestone should mark the beginning of concerted efforts by attackers to root out vulnerabilities in the newer operating system. "Although the huge market share that XP has means [attackers] will still be profitable there for years to come, Vista at 10% will put it on their radar," he said.