Windows 7 Infection Rate Lower Than Windows XP

A newer Windows is a safer Windows, as Microsoft proved with its internal security findings comparing its three most recent versions of its OS family.

Windows XP SP2 suffered a quarterly infection rate of 19.3 computers per thousand. SP3 improved things to 15.9 per thousand.

Windows Vista improved upon those numbers significantly. Windows Vista SP1 had 9.8 infections per thousand, while SP2 hit 7.5. The 64-bit versions of the OS did even better at 6.6 and 5.3, respectively.

Windows 7 was the best of all with the 32-bit version having only a 3.8 infection rate, and the 64-bit improving to 2.5 per thousand.

Microsoft offered a couple reasons why the 64-bit versions were a bit more hardy against infection:

“One reason may be that 64-bit versions of Windows still appeal to a more technically savvy audience than their 32-bit counterparts,” says Microsoft. “Kernel Patch Protection (KPP), a feature of 64-bit versions of Windows that protects the kernel from unauthorized modification, may also contribute to the discrepancy by preventing certain types of malware from operating.”

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  • warezme
    “One reason may be that 64-bit versions of Windows still appeal to a more technically savvy audience than their 32-bit counterparts,”

    Perhaps initially this was true but with the cost of RAM dropping so low most new computers are being stuffed with more and more RAM requiring OEM's to use 64bit OS version to access the full use from factory. The end user doesn't really know the difference since the majority of programs by now have been ported to 64bit and no longer a hassle.
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  • Anonymous
    Funny, nearly half of the Virus removal jobs I do are on Windows 7, mostly Drive By scareware antivirus problems that require user intervention to install

    ( OMG MY machine is infected by a bazillion different viruses, windows 7 antivirus 2011 says so, better click here to scan and remove....what how much $59.99 to purchase full protection, umm why can I not get to any website...where has my Paid for McAfee GONE!)

    I don't complain, keeps me in a job!
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  • rantoc
    Shame it is no way to determine when the user was at fault, even soo 0,25% infection rate of the 64bit win7 isn't that bad. Judging by the numbers MS have managed to protect it's users well!
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