After its release in July 2015, Windows 10 has earned its stripes as being more secure than its predecessors. With the new browser Edge and Windows Defender under its wings, the new Microsoft Operating System (OS) became an instant hit among the Windows connoisseurs.
But beyond the hype there lies a sad truth; nothing is 100% secure in the savage world of internet and over time people have discovered that Windows 10 comes with its own share of security flaws. In this article, we address the security loopholes that cripple the popularity of Windows 10 and offer tips on how to overcome them.
No matter what sophisticated security tools your computer is equipped with, criminals will always be able to make inroads to a network through the weakest security link – the user. Using manipulative tactics to coax users into succumbing to a security breach is the easiest way for hackers and cyber-criminals to make profits. Dubbed as a social engineering method, phishing emails exploit the human vulnerability to spread malware or spy on people’s data.
No technology is above human intelligence, so Windows 10 users can’t really count on their trusty workhorse for anything better. Soon after the release of Windows 10, scammers started circulating emails disguising them as official updates from Microsoft. But as an aware netizen, you should know that Microsoft rarely sends out updates through email, but pushes them through the Windows Updates program. The only way users can curtail well-devised social engineering attempts is by not clicking on dubious email links and attachments.
Double Edged Sword
Granted, Microsoft swanky new browser Edge is way ahead of its ailing predecessor Internet Explorer in terms of performance and security. Yet, Windows power users have raised their eyebrows to the fact that the Edge has Flash and PDF Reader as its built-in plug-ins, both Adobe products known for having a past of being hackers’ delight to exploit. From our recent memory, Adobe Systems in July last year hastily issued patch updates for it’s Flash media player to get rid of two critical zero-day vulnerabilities users found it the program.
Likewise, a report by Secunia software company, Adobe Reader’s versions 10 and 11 were found to have 39 and 40 vulnerabilities and – because the patch updates were so frequent – they left 65% and 18% of PCs prone to new attacks respectively.
Windows Defender is not capable enough (on its own) to fend off all malware attacks that seeps into your system, and especially not the sneaky ones that stealthily transfer from dodgy websites to your PC through drive-by attacks. Microsoft has a self-touted anti-malware product that is dissed by independent lab tests as incompetent. And again, the problem only worsens if you count on using Edge for your internet excursions. On the other hand, Google’s Chrome is pretty adept at blocking drive-by attacks through its malicious website blocking system. But that is just a secondary layer of protection and applies only to Chrome fanatics. What you should be aiming at is to have a powerful anti-malware product to run a crusade against malware threats.
There are many free anti-malware software’s that are as good as the paid ones, and do a wonderful job of combating malware attacks.
One of the good things about Windows Defender is that it replaces out-of-date security products and replaces itself by default to consolidate the security gates. Additionally, it automatically uninstalls outdated programs that can be used as a possible link by viruses to infiltrate a PC. But despite the best of intentions, Windows Defender falls short in performance and can only do so much – as confirmed by the below-average reviews it received in independent lab tests.
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