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Is the new MS WGA contributing to the SPAM problem?

By pgm554 ·
A company in Palo Alto (Blue Security) tried to take on spammers by spamming them back.

See:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/05/16/AR2006051601873.html?nav=hcmoduletmv

The spammers used high jacked machines ("bots")
to bring the Blue Security web site to its knees and cry uncle.

Since most of the MS software in the 3rd world is counterfeit, the WGA updates won't allow for the patching of these machines against the installation of malicious software (like bots and zombies).

MS admits that a great number of machines that its removal tool scans were infected with these "bots".

So my point is that WGA is a two edged sword,
yes, it helps MS to combat piracy, but the price that the rest of the world is paying, is one of SPAM,DDOS blackmail and proliferation of virus attacks.

I am of the opinion that most of this is caused by unpatched MS software that now, because of the WGA campaign, will be even harder to combat because of the greed of the company.

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Backwards logic...

"I am of the opinion that most of this is caused by unpatched MS software that now, because of the WGA campaign, will be even harder to combat because of the greed of the company."

You are so right. Microsoft is greedy for expecting to support something that was not paid for.

Under your logic, if someone steals a car with faulty brakes and rear ends me, it is the fault of the car's legal owner for not having the brakes serviced.

How about this instead? If people do not want to pay for an OS, they should use Linux, BSD, Solaris, or one of the other free, open source OS's out there. Not only will they no longer be stealing (say what you will about Microsoft, using software that requires a fee without paying for it is stealing), but they will be using OS's that are less likely to be targeted by hackers and less prone to being vulnerable.

In addition, the WGA requirement is relatively new. Windows users have been the prefered platform of choice by bot farmers for ages now.

Yes, Microsoft should be releasing software of a higher security level than what they currently have on the market. But to expect them to support a stolen product is rediculous. Instead of attacking Microsoft, attack the pirates.

J.Ja

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Two edged sword

by pgm554 In reply to Backwards logic...

Let's be pragmatic, MS will never stop piracy of its products.

Its products, when unpatched, cause major issues for anybody that does business on the net.

This is not a question of morality; it is a question of whether or not their anti piracy (WGA) initiative balances their good VS. the overall good of the net in general.

I say that it does not.

An unpatched MS box is a bad thing for all of us and anything that impedes those boxes from being patched is just adding fuel to the fire.

Remember Blaster, I Love You, Nimda and Code Red?

ALL are issues caused by unpatched MS software.

So when the next big one hits and your ability to do business on the net is impacted, just remember, it is probably an unpatched MS system you?ll have to thank.

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Your logic is still quite backwards

by Justin James Contributor In reply to Two edged sword

"Let's be pragmatic, MS will never stop piracy of its products."

Nonsense. If WGA can detect pirated copies of Windows and disable them, or turn off the Aero interface for pirated copies in Windows, then it would be able to shut off the copy of Windows entirely too.

"This is not a question of morality; it is a question of whether or not their anti piracy (WGA) initiative balances their good VS. the overall good of the net in general."

The "overall good of the net in general?" Is there a color coded meter to measure this, like the DHS' terrorism levels?

Since when is it the responsibility of a company to worry about the overall good of the Internet, or its equivalent (highways, the environment, airports, etc.)? Is it Freightliner's responsibility to design trucks that do not cause pavement to buckle under heavy brake application? Is it Pepsi's responsibility to ensure that the drinkers of their soda recycle the cans? Is it Delta's responsibility to remind me to not graffiti in the bathroom at LaGuardia? No, no, and no. So why are you holding Microsoft responsibile for the "overall good of the net?" Why don't you blast Oracle for their insecure products? Why don't you blast people who download stuff via BitTorrent (over 50% of Internet traffic today)? Or people who do not use caching DNS servers (5% of Internet packets are DNS lookups)? Until the day that governments regulate thes things ("patch your servers or face up to $500 in fines!"), it is not the responsibility of any company (or individual, for that matter) to care about "the overall good of the net."

If "the overall good of the net" not doing so well is Microsoft's fault, does that mean that Microsoft is to be thanks and congratualted when "the overall good of the net" is high?

"An unpatched MS box is a bad thing for all of us and anything that impedes those boxes from being patched is just adding fuel to the fire.

Remember Blaster, I Love You, Nimda and Code Red?

ALL are issues caused by unpatched MS software."

So if Microsoft *has* released a patch for something, and users do not install it, is it still Microsoft's fault? Nimda and Code Red exploited vulnerabilities that were patched BEFORE the attack, and there was no WGA then. Should we fine people for not patching their systems, and hurting "the overall good of the net?"

"So when the next big one hits and your ability to do business on the net is impacted, just remember, it is probably an unpatched MS system you?ll have to thank."

I would have to say that this is an incredibly improbably scenario. If so many Microsoft systems are flooding the network with so much traffic that backbones start shutting down, I am positive that the traffic will be filtered out. Even then, IP traffic is amazingly self healing. There has never been a bug or virus that has shut down the Internet, and most likely there probably never will be.

J.Ja

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Last time I looked...

by pgm554 In reply to Your logic is still quite ...

According to Spamhaus 60 to 70% of all internet traffic is SPAM and only getting worse.

So according to your math, between Bitorrent and what Spamhaus estimates, the internet is running at about 110% capacity?

Don't think so.

And mostly bots (MS products) are responsible for SPAM.

http://news.zdnet.co.uk/internet/security/0,39020375,39167561,00.htm

As for the net being brought to its knees by bots, just using a couple of thousand zombies DDOSing at a top level domain server or router and you can take down large pieces of the net.

It?s been done before and will be done again.

Here's an analogy akin to the WGA patch dilemma.

You have an illegal aliens coming into the country with a treatable, but highly communicable disease.

Suppose the government made it mandatory that, in order to use the free health facilities, you had to provide proof of citizenship (which they have been trying to do).

So that person, who is infected, hesitates seeking treatment for that malady.

That person then spreads the disease to other people, who in turn do the same.

Yes, they are illegal and using something they didn?t pay for, but for the common good of all, we put up with it.

MS has a monopoly on the most of the software used in the world today (still over 90%)., yeah folks are using it illegally ,but for the common good of all ,they need to try and make sure that all of their systems(legal or not) are patched and up to date.

It?s hard enough to get folks with legit copies to stay updated, let alone illegal ones.

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