If Android has recently overtaken Windows as the most popular OS to browse the web, the desktop OS remains the most used OS on PCs and laptops by a large margin. And unfortunately, the popularity of Windows on the desktop means that there are more viruses and malware targeting our beloved platform.
If you use Windows as your daily driver, it is strongly recommended to use Windows Defender or a third-party antivirus to protect your PC. Actually, Windows Defender has become really good, to the point that a Google Chrome engineer recently described it as "the only well behaved AV". It's not often that we see someone from Google saying something nice about Microsoft, (actually, Google exec Prabhakar Raghavan recently said that Windows 10 S was "a validation of the approach we’ve taken”) but the Redmond giant also wants you to know why Windows Defender is a great choice for consumers.
Today, the company published a new white paper, Evolution of malware prevention, that explains how Windows Defender uses next generation technologies to analyze malicious signals. "At Microsoft, we have the luxury of having the efficiency and precision of traditional antivirus and automated, intelligence-based capabilities that use behavioral analysis, heuristics, and machine learning to scale out our human experts," explained the company in a blog post.
According to the company, 97% of malware is discovered locally by consumers, and the remaining 3% can be detected by Microsoft's machine learning-based cloud protection in a way that doesn't impact performance. The company added:
We let our cloud protection system do the heavy lifting. Our cloud protection system is also connected to the Microsoft Intelligent Security Graph (ISG), which is informed by trillions of signals from billions of sources consisting of inputs we receive across our endpoints, consumer services, commercial services and on-premises technologies. All that uniquely positions us to personalize our protection and identify anomalies which often represent new threats.
The Windows Security Protection stack also includes several other features such as Windows Defender Advanced Advanced Threat Protection, which helps enterprise customers to detect and respond to advanced threats on their networks. "These features combined provide a secure and full-featured suite of solutions to help customers achieve the security profile that today’s modern threat landscape and customer demand," explains Microsoft. You can learn more about Microsoft's approach to malware protection in the white paper.