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Avecto's Austin added that many users log on the systems with privileged accounts to do their day-to-day work, which greatly increases the exposure in the event that their systems become compromised. "Usually this is because some of the applications they use may require admin-level passwords. We can assign privileges at the application level. By doing it this way, you can greatly enhance the security footing by controlling which applications are getting the admin level privileges."
While the Windows 7 statistics may have spiked, the OS is still substantially more secure than Windows XP, according to the same report.
The result is a passing of the gavel, of sorts. "One of the key metrics of success is when your product starts getting attacked," added ESET's Goretsky. "It means that you have truly arrived."