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Microsoft Declares Victory Against Autorun Malware

Microsoft announced this week via a blog post that the company has discovered 1.3 million fewer infections on Windows Vista and Windows XP machines caused by autorun malware. Microsoft reports a 68% drop in infections in just one year.

In case you were wondering, Microsoft decided to disable automatic execution of files via AutoRun or AutoPlay back in February because of malware that has been targeting such methods. A worm called “Conficker” and a worm called “Stuxnet” are two worms that utilize AutoRun to infect machines when a flash drive is plugged in.

According to Microsoft’s Malware Protection Center, there have been 1.3 million fewer infections on Windows Vista and Windows XP machines from February to May. These stats were compared to the three months prior. In fact, for the month of May, there were 59 percent fewer infections on Windows XP and 74 percent fewer on Windows Vista.

Autorun is already locked down in Windows 7, so the stats remained the same.

Overall, the number of infections for the past year have dropped 68%. “Abusing Autorun was only one trick up their [the malware writers’] collective sleeve. However, judging by the numbers in our data, it was a lucrative one,” said Microsoft.

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