Windows 8
Shown is a Hewlett-Packard computer tablet with Windows 8 software. REUTERS

Windows 8 has improved malware protections, Network World reported Monday.

Many computer users have flocked to Apple’s Macintosh products because it’s a common belief that Macs don’t get viruses.

Microsoft is responding with a Windows 8 that has anti-malware improvements, according to antivirus researchers, so they will be less likely to become infected.

Microsoft is taking a different and probably better approach when it comes to how anti-malware software will run on its newest addition of Windows, Aryeh Goretsky, researcher at antivirus software firm ESET, told Network World.

This new approach by Microsoft is being called "Early Launch Anti-Malware," and essentially means that the first software driver to be loaded into the Windows 8 OS when it’s used will be the driver of the user's anti-malware software.

This is a drastic change, Goretsky explained, because “before, it was no man’s land.” In other words, loading driver software on a user’s machine was random and “a malicious device driver” could get onto the computer first, which might let the malware take precedence over the anti-malware and disable it.

The anti-malware package in Windows 8, called Windows Defender, can be uninstalled, which is something computer suppliers might do if they are in antivirus partnerships with companies like Symantec and McAfee, Goretsky noted.

Even if the program is uninstalled, Windows 8 is still much better than its predecessor because Microsoft now makes it clear how the security software packages have to be removed.

Another addition to Windows 8 is the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface. It needs digitally signed firmware to be used when it is booting up to block rootkit, which enables continued privileged access to a computer.