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Microsoft fires back after CrowdStrike questions its trustworthiness

Microsoft logo at Ignite
Microsoft logo at Ignite (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • CrowdStrike recently reported that there is a "crisis of trust in legacy IT vendors, such as Microsoft."
  • Microsoft responded, calling CrowdStrike's report "self-serving market research."
  • CrowdStrike and Microsoft compete in the security space and have a longstanding rivalry.

A recent survey commissioned by CrowdStrike looked at trends regarding ransomware breaches and security threats. In addition to insights into the rise of certain types of threats, the report directly criticized Microsoft. In response to these claims, Microsoft called the research "self-serving."

Microsoft and CrowdStrike compete in the security space, in that both companies offer various types of protection and attempt to retain many of the same clients. VentureBeat breaks down a more extensive history of the rivalry between the companies in its coverage of the spat.

CrowdStrike specifically mentioned Microsoft when asking questions to 2,200 senior IT decision-makers and IT security professionals. The previous three surveys of this kind did not mention Microsoft by name. However, a question in the latest survey namedropped Microsoft, asking experts about their view of "legacy" vendors, including Microsoft. In total, 63% of respondents stated that they are "losing trust" in these types of vendors.

"Technology giants such as Microsoft are not immune to this form of cyberattack, and rather they are the gateway onto the network for millions of organizations around the globe," said the report from CrowdStrike. "If they do not hold themselves accountable, then many others could suffer."

Microsoft responded to the report with criticism of its own. "This week we announced the result of a sustained effort to proactively take down nation-state attack infrastructure, protecting both our customers and the wider industry," said Microsoft in a statement to VentureBeat. "We believe this is more valuable to our customers than self-serving market research that attacks other security vendors."

The statement by Microsoft referenced how the company seized control of several websites to disrupt the efforts of the China-based hacking group Nickel.

In the past, Microsoft Corporate Vice President of Communications Frank Shaw explained (opens in new tab) that Microsoft views security as a "team sport."

The survey commissioned by CrowdStrike looked more at legacy vendors due to increasing vulnerabilities, such as the SolarWinds attack. CrowdStrike claimed that there is a "crisis of trust in legacy IT vendors, such as Microsoft."

Sean Endicott
Sean Endicott

Sean Endicott is the news writer for Windows Central. If it runs Windows, is made by Microsoft, or has anything to do with either, he's on it. Sean's been with Windows Central since 2017 and is also our resident app expert. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com.