New evidence suggests that black hat crackers and other online criminal elements are targeting antivirus software and media players like Apple Computer Inc.'s iTunes, rather than heaping all of their attention onto Microsoft and problems with its software. Whilst there remains a huge amount of cracking which centres on Microsoft products, the SANS institute (who I am an ultra fan of) claims that crackers increasingly exploit flaws in software made by other companies as well.

One reason for this might be that Windows users are now accepting security updates automatically. Obviously, security flaws are found in many operating systems and other software products continuously, with patches more often than not being quickly released. The problem is that, in the past, Microsoft users might neglect to patch. Now that more automatic patching processes are underway, it's likely that crackers are turning their attentions to other software from differing sources.

"Operating systems have gotten better at finding and fixing things and auto-updating, so it's less fertile territory for the hackers," said SANS Chief Executive Alan Paller.