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Black Hat Attendees Most Interested In Windows Vista

Web services are another hot area of interest, according to a survey of 400 conference attendees.
More than half of the attendees of the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas plan to review Microsoft's Windows Vista platform in the next year, a survey released Friday showed.

The survey conducted this week by Applied Research on behalf of security firm Symantec Corp. also found that Web services followed by mobile technologies were expected to generate over time the hottest issues within Web application security. Web services is a term used to describe Web-based applications that dynamically interact using open standards.

The poll of 400 attendees found that 55 percent planned to review Vista in the next year, and 46 percent expected to research operating systems' services and libraries.

The majority, 67 percent, said they were most concerned about the Windows XP platform having vulnerabilities, and least concerned with the Mac OS, which was named by only 12 percent of the respondents. Those numbers, however, were not surprising, given the dominance of the Windows platform in corporations. Most of the Black Hat attendees are IT managers and independent researchers.

From a vulnerability perspective, almost a third of the respondents were most concerned with business systems, such as databases, back-up systems and management software. Next was infrastructure networking technology, followed in order by client applications, such as Microsoft Office and media players; operating systems; and messaging/scripting technologies.

Job and curiosity were the most frequently cited reason for researching an application or technology, and fully 85 percent of the respondents were based in North America.