According to Symantec’s annual Internet Security Report, Windows is not only doing well in terms of security, it’s actually doing better than competitors when it comes to the most widely-used operating systems. The information for this report was gathered during the last six months of 2006, and some of the information they were looking at included how many vulnerabilities appeared, and how long on average it took for a patch to be released.
- 39 vulnerabilities discovered
- 12 were high priority or severe
- On average, Microsoft took 21 days to fix them
Red Hat Linux
- 208 vulnerabilities discovered
- 2 considered high priority or severe, 130 were considered medium severity
- On average, it took 58 days to fix them
- 43 vulnerabilities discovered in Mac OS X
- 1 considered high priority or severe
- On average, it took 66 days to fix them
Microsoft is definitely on top of their game when it comes to issuing patches compared to the others, however they also had the most high priority patches to deal with. At the same time, they also had the best turn around for fixing them. Apple had the lowest number of high priority vulnerabilities, but they took the longest out of the three, on average to fix.
Because Microsoft has been a target for years, they’ve had to be aggressive with fixing these issues. Charles King, an analyst with Pund-IT when speaking to Internetnews.com explains that “there have been complaints in the past about Apple’s lack of response to security issues. But as Mac and Linux gain market share, they will have to respond much quicker.”