A guest post by Brian Jensen from Dell. He talks about Windows 8 security features.
One of the common questions asked any time a new version of a Windows Operating System is released has to do with how secure it is. Typically, each new version incorporates the same security features as the previous one. In addition, new features are often added. Therefore, every new version is, in theory, at least as secure as, or more secure than previous ones.
Generally speaking, most experts in the industry consider Windows 8 to be taking steps forward in the ever present attempt to improve security. Nevertheless, Windows 8 does not introduce anything revolutionary in the area of security. Although it is continually making improvements in the effort to protect users against attackers, Windows 8 was not ever touted as a security release.
Open Standard Data Security (UEFI)
Interestingly, some folks feel that the most significant security feature of Windows 8 is not even a feature that was created by Microsoft. Rather, it is the inclusion of UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface). UEFI is an open standard feature utilized to replace the outdated BIOS commonly found on PC hardware.
Although UEFI has been in existence for some time, systems built for Windows 8 and also Windows Server 2012, are the first systems to include it. The primary distinguishing feature offered by UEFI is that it allows for pre-boot authentication; it only allows software with recognized, valid security certificates to run. This attribute prevents rootkits and other malware that attempt to load at boot from doing so. To get more information on data security, click here.
Windows 8 Security Patches
Some users found it a little disconcerting that Windows 8 was in need of security patches within two weeks of being released. The hard fact of the matter is that no Operating System is completely secure and security patches will continue to be a reality as long as we live in an imperfect world with techno-predators in it. It is actually good that Microsoft continues to be vigilant in fixing vulnerabilities as soon as they arise.
Security Is Not the Differentiating Feature
Those considering purchasing Windows 8 are usually doing so, not so much because of new earth shattering safety features but rather because of other improvements and innovative features like the simple touch gestures, system-wide search, live tiles, settings sync and snap view. These are the types of things that are significantly differentiating Windows 8 from previous versions. Meanwhile, users can rest assured that security is as good as or better than previous versions.
Windows 8 Security Features
Although security is not a differentiating feature of Windows 8, it has already begun to become the most secure Windows OS of all times. This is because several new security features have been added to Windows 8 security list.
Windows 8 comes with an integrated Antivirus called Windows Defender (which also includes Microsoft Security Essentials). The built-in firewall security has become more robust and feature rich. The SmartScreen filter feature can keep away several hackers and other malware from corrupting system files. The next Windows 8 apps (Metro apps) that run in full screen mode are sandboxed. So they can’t threaten the system security in any way. You can read more about Windows 8 security features introduced by Microsoft.
These security features definitely make sure that Windows 8 is more secure than all its previous versions including Windows 7.
Brian Jensen works with Dell. In his spare time he enjoys traveling, cooking and spending time with his family. He has a passion for learning and writing about all things technology. For more information on Dell’s business technology services, click here.