Windows 8 Security Enhancements

Posted: October 22, 2013 in Articles
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Windows 8 SecurityWhenever someone talks about the latest advancements when it comes to software in the technology industry, most people want to know what kind of security the software has to offer. It is not surprising why; every day, the wide range of already existing security threats continues to evolve to penetrate newer, safer systems.

Microsoft is well aware of this fact as well, which is why the company has sought out to enhance its security software with its latest operating system. Because security features should be taken into account with any good review, keep these security improvements and how you can be protected from exploits and other vulnerabilities in mind when evaluating Windows 8 as a whole.

No Antivirus Required

In most cases, the first thing that people do when they get a new computer is install a new antivirus program to protect against threats from the Internet. However, this is not actually required when it comes to Windows 8; this is because the operating system has its own built-in program already prepared to protect its users. This program is called Windows Defender and uses the design from Microsoft Security Essentials.

If you were to install a new antivirus program on your Windows 8 computer, it would automatically cause Windows Defender to silence and disable itself, which means you’re still free to work with a familiar program. However, keep in mind that no other software developer will know Windows 8 quite as deeply as Microsoft does; in the same line of thinking, Microsoft is the company that should best know how to protect its own software.

Modern Access Control

With Windows 8.1, Microsoft has focused much of its attention on what IT departments can use in order to restrict users who are permitted to physically access a device. This version of Windows offers first-class biometrics, which can be as simple as a swipe or as complex as a full-on fingerprint demand, as well as trustworthy devices and multifactor authentication for personal devices.

Protection of Sensitive Data

Businesses are capable of keeping a close eye on their data through the use of remote data removal and pervasive encryption even when an employee transfers it to a personal device. With this technology, businesses can wipe data from personal devices for their own protection without affecting the personal data in any way.

Earlier Anti-Malware Protection

In most cases, antivirus programs start working when the operating system is finally up and running. With Windows 8, however, the software begins right from the boot screen, scanning the drives and fighting against rootkits. Windows Defender already has this feature, though there are other antivirus programs that also are working to add this to their code.

SmartScreen

Those who have stuck with the Windows operating system for the last few years will recognize the name SmartScreen as a filter within Internet Explorer. Recently, Microsoft has adapted the same filer to the operating system level. This means that it is possible to reap the benefits of SmartScreen to scan downloaded executable files through Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or any other Web browser.

When double-clicking the executable file, the signature will be sent to Microsoft’s servers where it will be analysed and have any issues reported. If the file has malware, then Windows will refuse to run the file.

These are just some of the many different security enhancements that Windows 8 brings its users to help protect against the prominent threat on the World Wide Web. With so many online threats available, you’ll need all the help you can get to protect your computer.

Article written by George Hayes, a security consultant and manager of IT support business Your IT Department in the UK.

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