The Microsoft Protection Racket
Does Microsoft think it is going to get away with charging real money for any sort of add-on, service, or new product that protects clients against flaws in its own operating system? Does the existence of this not constitute an incredible conflict of interest? Why improve the base code when you can sell "protection"? Is Frank Nitti the new CEO?
So what is actually going on here? I think there were some bottom-line questions that must have been brought up internally. Obviously someone at Microsoft looked at the expense of "patch Tuesday" and asked, "Is there any way we can make some money with all these patches?" The answer was "Yeah, let's stop doing them and sell 'protection' instead." Bravo! And now the company has a new revenue stream.
Microsoft has stayed away from the antivirus, antispyware game for a long time because it knew that there was this inherent conflict of interest unless it gave away such software for free. After all, the exploits utilized by malware are possible because of flaws within the Microsoft code base. There is no incentive to fix the code base if it can make additional money selling "protection."
Microsoft talks about how when it releases Vista, there will be various versions such as Home, Small Business, Enterprise, and so on. Why doesn't the company just bite the bullet and bring out various exploitable versions? Here are some suggestions:
Vista - Won't Boot Edition… $29.95
Vista - Preloaded with Viruses and Spyware Edition… $39.95
Vista - Initially Clean but Use at Your Own Risk Edition… $49.95
Vista - Clean with Firewall and Weekly Protection Update Edition… $200