Purchased a new computer recently? Did it come with all of these wonderful little applications from software developers that have a vested interest in you using their product? From power management software to PDF printing, from disk burning to photo management, no matter who the vendor is they all have these crappy little applications as part of the install.
More importantly they are all part of the recovery process and are integrated into the recovery package. From a convenience perspective it is great. You have all of these little applications that enhance your user experience.
From a cybercrime and cyber security viewpoint they are a ticking time bomb. Most of these applications have been rushed into production. Most of these applications have been written without the thought security and most of these applications have no update or critical patch management system in place.
The biggest problem is that the cyber criminals, the hackers know about this and the applications are targeted by them to access your business and home computers.
When a computer is installed by a professional, an MSP or an IT manager, then all you have installed is the basic operating system and the applications that you need to do the job. These installed machines are usually faster, more stable and more secure than the ones you buy from a retail shop. These images (standard operating environments- SOE) are created and rolled out to a business network to reduce maintenance costs and increase security.
They may buy a computer from a retail shop, but before it becomes a production computer it is rebuilt without the crap that slows them down.
Roger Smith is the CEO of R & I ICT Consulting Services, Amazon #1 selling author on Cybercrime, author of the Digital Security Toolbox and author of the SME Digital Security Framework. He is a Speaker, Author, Teacher and educator on cybercrime and how to protect yourself from the digital world.