Millions of computer are not running up-to-date antivirus, says Microsoft

In its latest Microsoft Security Intelligence Report (SIR), Volume 14, released recently, Microsoft has found that millions of computer are not running up-to-date antivirus. In terms of percentage, Microsoft found that almost 25% of the computers did not have an updated antivirus protection installed on their Windows computers.

Without adequate security protection, computers are 5.5 times more likely to be infected with malware, says Microsoft, so it is imperative that Windows users install a good antivirus software and make sure that it is updated frequently.

The report touched upon the two big online threats being faced by computer users:

  1. Malicious email attachments from almost 3 million computers in the fourth quarter of 2012 was detected and removed by Microsoft
  2. Keygen, a threat family commonly bundled with malware, was detected almost 7 million times in the fourth quarter of 2012.

Many people do not bother to even check if their antivirus is installed, active or update. There are a number of reasons that 2.5 out of 10 computers are unprotected. The trial period may have expired, or the software is out of date, but it still continues to be installed. Or maybe the security software was disabled by malware. And then there are those few who still do not realize the importance of Antivirus and so do not even install it.

Check out this Infographic released by Microsoft:

Click to see full image

Microsoft releases the SIR twice a year to inform the public about the most prevalent global threats. The report analyzes the threat landscape of exploits, vulnerabilities, and malware using data from Internet services and over 600 million computers worldwide. You can download the report by clicking here.

Anand Khanse is the Admin of, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. He enjoys following and reporting Microsoft news and developments in the world of Personal Computing & Social Media.


  1. Barry Etheridge

    Might help if MS stopped definition updates for Security Essentials being optional (and therefore not automatically notified to users) then, mightn’t it?

  2. Orv Williams

    Nothing surprising there… in my personal experience troubleshooting PCs I noticed long ago that the average PC user ignores updates and simply clicks nag notifications out of the way if and when they appear.
    System updates are usually far behind, AV updates are behind, and their browsers are usually clogged with toolbars because they never bother to read installation screens closely and prevent them from being installed. Of course publishers know this, and that is why so many toolbars and such are piggybacked on installation software with the default set to INSTALL.

  3. Orv Williams

    The only caveat to the article is that silent mode isn’t truly silent… the Essentials windows opens and remains on the desktop until you close it. But that is a trivial annoyance.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

8 + 4 =