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Unbeknowst to you, your computer could be a double agent, committing cybercrime as part of a internet-connected botnet. Over 2.2 million American PCs are part of some botnet, according to Microsoft.  (Source: Ubisoft)
U.S. leads the world in botnet virus infection rates

According to a new 240-page security report from Microsoft dubbed the Security Intelligence Report, America is among the most infected countries in the world when it comes to botnets.  The report uses information collected in the first half of 2010 via the Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool.

Over 2.2 million PCs in the U.S. are infected with a virus that makes them part of one of the internet's massive botnets.  The term "botnet" refers to a group of connected computers that can be used for ill purposes such as spamming, distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, and mass credit card fraud.

Brazil came in second place for most infected computers, with 550,000 botnet-infected PCs.  Per computer population, though South Korea had the highest rate (though its total number of infected machines is lower than that of the U.S. or Brazil).  In South Korea 14.6 out of 1,000 PCs are in a botnet, versus 5.2 computers out of 1,000 in the U.S.

Cliff Evans, head of security and identity at Microsoft UK, comments to 
BBC News, "Most people have this idea of a virus and how it used to announce itself.  Few people know about botnets."

Fewer people perhaps know about Microsoft's Malicious Software Removal Tool (MRT).  MRT has been is a free tool Microsoft includes with Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7.  First released in 2005, the tool is easy to run -- just go to "Start", type "run" in the search bar, and then type "mrt" (case insensitive) in the resulting popup.  The tool will then activate and be ready to scan your computer and remove many common types of malware.

Perhaps if everyone learns how to use the MRT, America can escape earning the dubious distinction of being the world's biggest botnet participant in 2011.  Given the general public's ignorance of security, that seems unlikely, though.

Despite the difficulty in getting the public to practice proper security, Microsoft is taking steps to try to win the war against botnet masters on its own.  The company recently seized control over 276 internet domains that were being used by botnet owners.  And it has beefed up the securityof its most recent operating system, Windows 7, making it harder to infect new PCs.

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RE: Windows, the hole filled waste of an OS.
By omnicronx on 10/14/2010 2:34:04 PM , Rating: 2
Same with SuSE, you can add more repos to support more hardware like webcams. And SuSE has built in 3D support for most Intel and AMD graphics cards.
I don't disagree that Suse does the same thing, I disagree with your statements of it being even close to as comprehensive as Windows 7.

(In fact I would disagree that it had more support than previous Windows OS's, Device manufacturers make drivers for Windows, they generally do not for unix based OS's.)

Windows is much easier to use out of box for much more hardware that any version of nix. That is clearly evident.

Nothing wrong with nix (Have been a long time user myself), but lets not kid ourselves here..

RE: Windows, the hole filled waste of an OS.
By sprockkets on 10/14/2010 4:16:39 PM , Rating: 2
Well, either the distro has the driver, or it doesn't. But since it is much more updated than any version of windows, it is better.

Win7 won't support my Dell 700m 855gm Intel video. No driver is made for it. Hacking in the Vista driver fails to work. Dumb, but there it is.

SuSE? Full 3D support out of the box.

Sometimes older hardware gets depreciated while usually Linux keeps it.

By SoCalBoomer on 10/14/2010 6:04:28 PM , Rating: 2
It's not that Win7 won't support your old display, but rather that Intel will not write drivers for it. . .

Everyone blames Microsoft for driver support when they don't write drivers, hardware manufacturers do and Intel is notorious for only supporting those chipsets they actually want to support. . .

"We shipped it on Saturday. Then on Sunday, we rested." -- Steve Jobs on the iPad launch

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