Microsoft: Of Course Safe Products Are More Important Than Our Profit

A few years ago when Microsoft announced it was “integrating” their Internet Explorer web browser into the operating system itself, many people who knew a bit about computer systems saw immediately the hand of Marketing dominating the actual computer science.

Processes in a computer system are discreet for a very good reason – one should effect another in predefined ways, limiting the scope of error and enhancing capabilities through standardized APIs.

But Microsoft needed to dominate the market further, even though it already was dominant.

Instead of focusing on creating a safer and widely standardized web browser product, they instead chose to blur its distinction from the operating system, making the web browser capable of effecting things at a very low level all by itself – a level that is normally managed by just the operating system, with all of its security features, and checks and balances.

This played nicely into their strategy of defending themselves against monopolistic practices rulings – by blurring the distinction of the web browser from the operating system, they could say that the web browser must remain or the whole computer system is broken. Of course, this perspective is more marketing/legal strategic than scientific.

Now that Mozilla’s Firefox web browser is being used by more and more people – a steadily growing user base – Microsoft has somehow discovered a way to separate Internet Explorer from Windows and still allow the computers to function. They’re planning a release of a new version of Internet Explorer that is separate from the operating system itself to help enchance security.

What a great discovery they have made!

Once again they have allowed their marketing people to dominate the science. They have created a product for people that they knew is globally used, making it vulnerable to theft, fraud and just pure destruction, to satisfy their marketing goals.

Now they say they are interested in security – now that more people are using Firefox.

And their solution is to go back to doing things the way that everyone knows it should be done. How much loss could have been prevented if the science prevailed over marketing?

And even speaking from the selfish business perspective – how much did Microsoft gain by listening to marketing over science in the long run, when their public trust becomes so tainted. Their only saving “grace” is that people are too lazy to change.

They will speak from the “positive”, portraying themselves as a company that cares about security and always has. They will never address their prior actions that demonstrate otherwise. It is the position of underlying corruption and duplicity.

But at least people should soon benefit from having some better security when using their products.

One of many articles:

CRN | Gates: Independent Browser, Free Spyware On Tap As Part Of Security Efforts