(By Info-Tech Analyst James Quin - Printed with permission from Processor magazine www.processor.com)
Before we start, to be fair, the title of this piece could have just as easily been “Is Piracy Responsible For The Spread Of Malware?” because, to be honest, the problem is pirated Windows licenses. Of course, Microsoft isn't directly responsible for the piracy of its software (I say “directly” because the price charged is likely the biggest stimulant to license theft), but the measures the Redmond giant takes to limit piracy sure aren't doing anything to address the spread of malware.
The single most common family of software products in existence today is the Windows suite of operating systems from Microsoft. Though it's difficult to determine the actual number of devices on which the various flavors of Windows exist, they collectively maintain about 90% of the operating system market share. So, when it comes to picking a target, anyone interested in writing malware has an easy choice on their hands. Writing malware for Windows ensures the greatest spread of the code and the greatest likelihood of generating advantageous results. This is why most malware targets Windows, not because the software is inherently less secure.