Evil Competitor MicroSoft

Open topic | December 15th, 2007 | 2 Comments

For those (are there any really?) that don’t know what MS stands for let me tell you that it is Microsoft. I am a fan of microsoft, apart linux what I always use is microsoft products and I am actually under a machine with Windows OS.

Windows as one of the most used operating systems has loads of softwares already pre-installed and applications, and their latest first Microsoft AntiSpyware Beta1 is the latest first antispyware software they released re-branded, and on this AntiSpyware software they did used some of their evil roots to compete the competition for one of their other products, Internet Explorer (aka IE).

Internet Explorers main competitor is FireFox, browser produced by Mozilla. What saves Internet Explorer and being able to compete with FireFox is the fact that it comes as your default browser when you install Windows in your computer or you buy a computer with Windows operating system, just a few of users do really prefer using Internet Explorer over FireFox or Opera and the rest are just too lazy to install a new browser or are not even aware that there exists other browser than Internet Explorer.


For the month of November most visitors of SEO Optimization (to be precise, 67.33%) used FireFox and 27.58% of users used Internet Explorer, the rest used Opera, Safari, Camino and even 0.06% used Netscape (yes, there is someone still using Netscape). These stats makes me believe that mainly visitors of this blog are webmasters, which all cool. But on sites that are not tech related and have nothing to do with technical stuff, what browsers do their users use? On my other Entertainment site, I notice the next stats: 81.60% of users use Internet explorer and 16.65% used FireFox. Stats which clearly speak that FireFox is beating Internet Explorer among webmasters and those that really know something more about safety and care about faster browsing experience, which FireFox has.

Where is the Evil Competitor?

The evil competitor appears once again on their AntiSpyware software, the Microsoft AntiSpyware. The AntiSpyware produced by Microsoft labels FireFox as alternative browser which may be vulnerable to a lack of security updates and is leveled under High Threat Level.

Microsoft AntiSpyware Lables FireFox and Vulnerable alternative browser

Can you read the description and the advice? In case you can’t click on the image for a bigger preview, or lets make it even easier for the lazy folks and write it down.

Description: Mozilla FireFox is an alternative browser which may be vulnerable to a lack of security updates and may perform operations differently than the default browser.
Advice: This is a very high risk threat and should be removed immediately as to prevent harm to your computer or your privacy.

This warning can be taken really seriously from non tech related people that have just installed firefox and haven’t really as of yet experienced the safer and faster browsing with this lovely browser produced by Mozilla, after all it is labeled under high threat level. The fact is that FireFox is 5-10 times more safer than Internet Explorer, FireFox updates its version every time a new bug has been found out and it being kept up to date through their notice.

The truth

IE (Internet Explorer) has way much more security vulnerabilities than what FireFox is, maybe because the malware writers target Internet Explorer as it is one of the most used browsers as of yet or simply because FireFox is more willing to update their browser and keep it secure with new patches.

FireFox beats Internet Explorer in many other points such as the faster browsing, once you experience FireFox you will visibly notice that browsing with FireFox is way much faster than why Internet Explorer. Mozilla FireFox has as well a way much cleaner appearance and simplicity to be used and modified, and the numerous addons you can use make things even more simple with FireFox as for normal users as well as for webmasters.

After highlighting this points I have to also highlight that I like the Microsoft sense of humor used on their AntiSpyware software as well as their evil way of treating with the competitors. What are your thoughts on this evil marketing way?

Update: Special thanks to Nelson the Help Desk Geek for highlighting some important parts.

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2 Responses to “Evil Competitor MicroSoft”
  1. Nelson says:

    In mid-December 2004, Microsoft purchased existing antispyware technology from Giant Software and rebranded it Microsoft AntiSpyware beta 1 to release it to the public in January 6th 2005. This is the version you are showing on your example.

    In 2006, Microsoft released Beta 2 and it changed the name from Anti-spyware Beta 1 to Windows Defender Beta 2, compatible with Windows XP as an optional download, but is fully integrated and part of Windows Vista.

    I tested Beta 1 when it came out, and despite the high spyware catch efficiency, it had many issues, including the issue of taking valid genuine system files as threats, this caused many systems to become unstable because people deleted files that are actually needed for the system to operate. I believe this is not intentional from Microsoft, but was some type of definition problems they were having. Is not surprise Firefox shows up here as evil jejejjeje

    I agree with you Firefox being better than IE, even though in windows vista Microsoft has taken care of many vulnerabilities that made IE the bum in the browser arena, one of them being, Internet Explorer up to windows XP was fully integrated in Windows Shell, that means, Internet Explorer had access to anything on windows, which made it really easy to anyone to take control on your system, using another stupid technology that Microsoft introduced named “ActiveX Controls” that has been changed on windows Vista for good.

    If you are using Windows XP or an older Windows Version, I recommend you download Firefox for Better browsing Experience, Is faster, secure, and Easy to use. If you are using Windows Vista, you pick.

    Nice post by the way.

  2. For one or another reason, I was hoping to grab your attention and explain this more in-depth Nelson 😉

    All that explains that the evil way to compete a direct concurrence was not actually that evil, but rather lack of quality in the anti-spyware software.

    Its always good to have a real geek reading your blog, isn’t it? 😉