Following Google's lead, Microsoft has made the SSL/TLS secured http (https://) protocol the default for Hotmail.
In addition, Microsoft has started an attempt to make the users more aware of possible phishing attempts by marking the e-mails they have verified as coming from a legitimate source with a green shield icon.
Spam filtering finally gets personalized. You can now mark senders (who are not necessarily on your contact list) that you don't want to be sent to the junk mail folder.
And perhaps the most innovative feature, if you are away from home and accessing your e-mail from a public workstation (like a cyber-cafe or library) or simply on an unsecured wireless network and want to have the added assurance that your password will not be compromised, you can request a one-time password to be sent to your phone.