Of all the major operating systems made for desktop machines, Windows has arguably gained the reputation for being the most vulnerable one.
Windows, of course, commands a large majority of the desktop operating system market and naturally draws a lot more attention, both good and bad.
As for the bad, security firm Avecto reports that Microsoft's Windows has seen a 52 percent increase in the number of reported vulnerabilities in the company's software. This spreads across all of Microsoft's suite of applications such as Internet Explorer, Office, Windows Server and many others.
Much of these vulnerabilities, however, could be mitigated simply by removing access to Windows administrator rights. Blocking off admin rights on Windows (even to the owner of the machine) would better prevent malicious software from infecting a Windows PC in the first place and then further spreading deeper into Windows' system files.
Administrator accounts are common even in consumer and home PCs. They give access to everything on the computer, since naturally owners want complete control of their machines. They don't need it, however, especially with regular employees who only need limited access to the operating system.
A better practice would be for owners and businesses to create non-administrator standard accounts that only allow for lower, limited access privileges to a Windows computer. This means a user would not be able to make any deep level changes to their machine's registry and system files.
Moreover, standard accounts can prevent a user from downloading and installing unauthorized files onto the machine. As a result, any exploits the user may haphazardly come across will only affect whatever limited tasks the user is allowed to perform on the machine.
In Avecto's report, the firm concludes that if Microsoft would have taken the first step of removing user admin rights from the Windows operating system, 86 percent of all security flaws reported in 2015 would have been ineffective, and nearly 99.5 percent of them on Internet Explorer would be unexplainable by hackers.
As they say, it's better to be safe than sorry, so with a preventive measure that can be implemented quite easily, restricting users from administrative rights could be the best form of protection yet from malicious attacks online.
Photo : Brett Morrison | Flickr