Recently, Jason Garms, architect and group program manager in Microsoft’s security unit, gave an interview to Ziff Davis Internet News. In this interview he said that according to usage statistics culled from Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool, more than 20 percent of all infected computers running Windows XP Service Pack 2 were compromised by numerous rootkits and complex parasites, which were using rootkit techniques to conceal their malicious activity and presence in the system. Jason Garms named the most widely spread threats of such kind (FU, WinNT/Ispro, HackDef) and noted that they are often bundled with illegally installed worms, backdoors, remote administration tools, spyware and even adware parasites.
Microsoft’s spokesman once again emphasized a well known, but somehow disregarded fact – users still do not care about their privacy and their systems security. Virus authors and spyware makers still successfully use social engineering techniques that help them to trick a large number of people every day:
The social engineering tactic is working for virus writers. People are still clicking on attachments and links in IM messages and becoming infected. Even with all the education programs, there’s still a large number of customers being tricked everyday.
This latest message from Microsoft’s senior official fully endorses a three-weeks-old post on the 2-Spyware.com blog – Virus authors and spyware makers join forces. People shouldn’t forget that such trends are not temporal, but usually persist for years. Don’t neglect your antivirus and anti-spyware software. Be very careful and aware online. Take care!