Re: Security Alert: Some PCs download and install software bythemselves

From: Alex F. Bokov (
Date: Tue Jul 17 2001 - 07:29:17 MDT


On Tue, 17 Jul 2001, Eugene Leitl wrote:

> On Mon, 16 Jul 2001, Harvey Newstrom wrote:
> > Phoenix PCs with Windows 98 will automatically connect to the Internet,
> > download software, and install it on your machine without asking, "for your
> > convenience"!
> 1) old bits
> 2) you *trust* Win98? Or any code from a commercial vendor? Redmond,
> especially?
> 3)

Windows 98 is very secure, because its code is closed and hackers
can't find out about its vulnerabilities. They can't even use the
hacker tactic of posing as developers, because Microsoft *doesn't*
*even* *document* many of the system calls, or documents them so
obscurely that you really have to know what you're doing to understand
it. Microsoft has structured its products such that they can only be
used for a few legitimate purposes by a few legitimate businesses. You
can bet that the software Phoenix PCs install is useful, like a patch
or a new driver or a small advertising banner that helps you, the
customer, save money. Not Back Orifice and PGP like Linux users would
install on your machine if they had the chance.

So hackers have no other recourse than going to public domain software
and trying to convince the rest of you to follow. Just another example
of how software has to be proprietary to be any good. I mean, come on!
Linux software was written by teenage hackers and communists who
wanted to get something for nothing, while Windows was written by
seasoned developers (probably all with MCSEs at the very least) and
state of the art tools like Visual Studio. So which kernel would you
prefer running your mission-critical floppy drive? Leave the code to
the specialists, I say. Thousands of Fortune 500 companies, leading
educational institutions, and the Federal Government can't be wrong.

PS: Who's Redmond? Win98 was written by Bill Gates last time I
checked. Get your facts straight.

- --

SOG BATF terrorism
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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Fri Oct 12 2001 - 14:39:49 MDT