Hackers Change Focus from Operating Systems to Software Applications

hacked-computer-june081Since the dawn of computers, people have been worried about the viruses and hackers. Now there are companies specifically dedicated to preventing these hackers and viruses from affecting our computers. One report however, says that they aren’t doing nearly enough. SANS Institute states that the cybersecurity community is facing an epidemic of unpatched software especially with applications like Adobe, Flash, Java, and Microsoft.

The report found that exploitable bugs in those applications are often unpatched for long periods of time.

Technology Officer Wolfgang Kandek says “This is something that can easily be fixed if users have the focus and the tools, but they’re simply not aware of it.”

A big part of the problem comes from cyber criminals shifting their focus from operating systems to applications. Those application bugs are neglected for twice as long on average as those in operating systems themselves. “We’ve learned that operating systems need to be updated regularly,” Kandek says. “We need to bring that same kind of visibility and conscientiousness to applications.”

These little bugs in the applications can be used to make innocent websites into malware, effectively sharing hazards for the average PC user. They can also be used in spoof e-mails that have attachments like word files and PDF’s that will invisibly install the spyware onto your computer. Neither of the two problems can be fixed easily, and more than two-thirds of the world’s Web sites are vulnerable to sabotage techniques. But both use vulnerabilities in users’ software to install the malicious software that steals information or hijacks their computers.

As long as hackers focus on individual software applications, it is still a major threat to businesses all around the world. To combat this, companies need to refocus their energies and put more money into covering specific applications.

(Via Forbes)

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