Pirated Windows versions have always been vulnerable when it comes to security. A recent report published by Heise Online confirms that hundreds of thousands of computers continue to be threatened by tons of malware.
A particular vulnerability that has been codenamed EternalBlue is to be blamed for this misfortune. The malware risk especially affects computers which use pirated Windows versions. This gap in security has its traces back in the legacies of US secret service NSA. Even after several years, many systems continue to be vulnerable. For more than three years, US intelligence was using it for performing hidden attacks on all kinds of targets. The agency finally had to leak the vulnerability to Microsoft due to the danger of hacking by a famous hacker group, Shadow Brokers. Microsoft then consequently had to abandon a patch day for the very first time in the company’s history for filling in the gap as quickly as possible.
However, systems that are well-maintained are no longer threatened by this risk as Microsoft had provided appropriate patches for Windows versions even outside of the regular update support cycle.
According to a published report by Avira, more than three hundred thousand computers remain vulnerable to unpatched variants of SMB1 interface, and these are only the reported figures. The real figures are much higher than this. In spite of the Trojans and malicious codes being removed continuously by anti-virus programs, vulnerable systems are constantly infected. The infection cycle remains unending as there is no corresponding Windows update as yet. Also, removing the infection is difficult as malicious programs constantly fill up surrounding networks with new traffic while searching for new victims.
It is normally unlikely that pirated Windows versions receive any official system updates, however it is recommended that the systems affected should shut down the SMB1 protocol without any further delay. A blog at Microsoft clearly states that SMB1 is not safe at all. More details on how to implement this technique can be found on this Microsoft page.