Security Analyst: Vista Not Safe From Viruses

Friday, 8 Dec 2006 | 8:49 AM ET

It's been a week since Microsoft released it's Vista operating system to businesses--and one security analyst says the system is not safe and actually vulnerable to some major viruses. Ron O'Brien is Senior Security Analyst at Sophos. He appeared on "Squawk Box."

Vista Security Questions
A security test on Vista shows the program is vulnerable to three of the top ten viruses, says Ron O'Brien, Sophos Senior Security Analyst. He discusses the test with CNBC's Becky Quick

O'Brien says that his company ran tests on Vista before it was released. O'Brien says the system was corrupted by three of the top ten viruses that exist. And O'Brien said the viruses were enacted without the user taking any action--but just simply running the system.

CNBC's Becky Quick read a statement from Microsoft--that was a response to O'Brien's findings. They basically said any viruses in Vista were the result of "social engineering." That means that the user would have to take action--like open an email or be directed to a site that has viruses. O'Brien said that's not the case with all viruses

O'Brien did say that no operating system is 100% safe. He said among other safety measures--that businesses should alert Vista users not to open any suspicious emails and that any files should be downloaded only from trusted sites.

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  • Joe Kernen is co-anchor of "Squawk Box," CNBC's signature morning program.

  • Becky Quick is co-anchor of "Squawk Box," CNBC's signature morning program. She's also a columnist for Fortune.

  • Andrew Ross Sorkin is a co-anchor of "Squawk Box," a financial columnist for "The New York Times" and the editor-at-large of NYT's DealBook.