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Anti-Virus Is Dead (But Still Makes Money) Says Symantec

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the look-for-antivirus-with-the-rms-serial-of-approval dept.

Security 254

judgecorp (778838) writes "Symantec says anti-virus is dead but the company — the world's largest IT security firm — still makes 40 percent of its revenue there. AV now lets through around 55 percent of attacks, the company's senior vice president of information security told the Wall Street Journal. Meanwhile, other security firms including FireEye, RedSocks and Imperva are casting doubt on AV, suggesting a focus on data loss prevention might be better."

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No explanation for why though? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46928735)

"AV now lets through around 55 percent of attacks" What happened? What's the big game changer from the 95% detections of just a few years ago?

Re:No explanation for why though? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46928785)

Because marketing is more effective than a quality product.

Re:No explanation for why though? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929497)

AV is Dead!!! LONG LIVE AV!!!

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

ComputersKai (3499237) | about 7 months ago | (#46929545)

John McAfee actually said something like that himself...

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

wisnoskij (1206448) | about 7 months ago | (#46930007)

Because AV's business model is only helped by more computers swimming in viruses.

Re:No explanation for why though? (4, Insightful)

Xicor (2738029) | about 7 months ago | (#46928807)

they dont update the virus signatures anymore, because ppl who use symantec antivirus dont have any clue wtf they are doing. it is kindof like going to a steak restaurant and ordering your steak well done. the restaurant has lower quality meat for those people because it is cheaper and they cant tell the difference.

Re:No explanation for why though? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929585)

I like my steak well done. (What's the opposite? Badly done, of course.) What I don't like is shit for brain foodie snobs that think they look like they know what they're talking about if they just follow along with the herd.

Re:No explanation for why though? (2)

Xicor (2738029) | about 7 months ago | (#46929849)

... well done vs rare. not well done vs badly done.

really... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929997)

I bet some geniouses do think well done is done well. But where do you go to order something and they ask you, "would you like a cup of our crapiest water?" or likewise. Would you like the engine cap fully tightened? How about only half-filled brake light fluid...

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 7 months ago | (#46929619)

Ignorance or preference? I assume those who order it well done have tried medium and didn't like it. Maybe they don't really like it at all, if you go to s sushi restaurant they usually have something for kids, people with allergies and others who got dragged into a sushi place. If they're happy, the restaurant is happy then I don't really care if a chef's heart breaks by turning a juicy steak into leather.

Re:No explanation for why though? (4, Insightful)

Xicor (2738029) | about 7 months ago | (#46929869)

yes, but when you can cut costs and not have any issues, a lot of places will do it. theres no point in spending 20$ on a prime steak if the person eating it cant tell the difference between a shoe and a steak.

Re:No explanation for why though? (5, Interesting)

AthanasiusKircher (1333179) | about 7 months ago | (#46930905)

yes, but when you can cut costs and not have any issues, a lot of places will do it.

I'd like to see reliable evidence of this. I've heard this crap ever since Anthony Bourdain included it in some rant in one of his books about people who liked meat cooked more than medium-rare. Perhaps he was known to serve crappy food to those people, but I'd be really interested to know how widespread the practice is.

Because if you search around on some cooking forums, you'll see other actual chefs chime in and say they do NOT do this. Actual chefs will tell you that they tend to have thinner cuts available for people who like well-done, so as not to delay the entire order while cooking one steak longer. (If they don't have this, they'll generally offer to butterfly the cut.) But actually serving people crappier meat? Not so much that I've heard, outside of Tony's confessions of being a jerk.

theres no point in spending 20$ on a prime steak if the person eating it cant tell the difference between a shoe and a steak.

"Prime" ratings refer to marbling, not necessarily quality of taste. So, if you pay more for "prime," you're paying for more fat. That fat won't disappear completely if the steak is cooked well done: in fact, more of it will often soften, because temperatures about 130 F (temp for medium-rare) allow faster break-down of a lot of fat. Case in point: taste a low-quality fatty cut cooked fast on a hot grill (often lots of gristle) vs. similar meat from the same part of the cow cooked to a much higher temperature longer as a pot roast... all that fat will be melt-in-your-mouth tender. A well-done steak, done properly, can be somewhere in between.

For the record, I generally order my steaks medium rare, and I agree that that maximizes certain aspects (particularly juiciness and tenderness).

But for those who like well-done, they often get extra browning flavors from the Maillard reaction and caramelization, and the extra fat break-down can do good things for the fat (though making the muscle tougher). If the steak is heated slowly before grilling or finished in the oven at a very low temperature, it can also be quite juicy (contrary to popular belief). Cooking a steak well-done that tastes good is also an art, and probably even more finicky that cooking one medium-rare.

Anyhow, sorry, but if you are actually able to tell a prime-grade steak at medium-rare, you should also be able to tell one at well-done. If you can't, you probably don't know as much about steaks as you think you do. Different people like different things, but that doesn't excuse insulting them or serving them crappier food.

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | about 7 months ago | (#46930951)

My mother-in-law always orders her steak medium but wants there to be no pink visible inside. We always correct her order to well-done immediately after she orders because she returns any steak with pink visible because like many people with red meat, she doesn't understand the difference between 'not cooked' and 'still pink'.

Re:No explanation for why though? (5, Insightful)

manu144x (3377615) | about 7 months ago | (#46928823)

One answer could be because now threats are mostly targeted at the biggest weakness: humans. Phishing, scams, and all that are much more profitable and incredibly hard to detect programmatically. Legit websites are hacked daily and injected phishing sites and then removed fast.

They all rely pretty much on human stupidity and ignorance, and that is very hard to stop...

Re:No explanation for why though? (4, Interesting)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 7 months ago | (#46929069)

Bingo. Back when automated worms were the biggest threat we faced, programmatic tools were very effective. Likewise when viruses needed to be passed manually from user to user via infected files, AV could do a lot to stop it. Meanwhile, trojans weren't too effective, since software was still being distributed via physical media, so people were distrustful of downloadable executables. Nowadays though? Users are enticed to install trojans on their computers, which is now a perfectly normal thing to do, since that's the simplest vector most of the time, unaware that what they are doing is harmful.

As the saying goes, you can't fix stupid.

Even so, I rather like OS X's current way of combatting trojans, which gives the user three options in the System Preferences: allow anything to run, only run stuff from registered developers, and only run stuff from the Mac App Store. Doing so leaves the control in the user's hands, but allows them to choose the level of protection against executables coming from illegitimate sources that they want. The middle option in particular is a nice one (and used to be the default, though the Mac App Store one may be the default now...not sure), since it's rare that I encounter a legitimate Mac developer who isn't registered, meaning that the warnings about software from unregistered sources are exceedingly rare. Warnings that are rare are exactly the sort of thing we want, since it makes them stand out more and means that users are less likely to become blind to them.

Quick aside: I'm not suggesting anything about the relative worths of the various platforms, nor am I suggesting this feature is unique to OS X (e.g. I know Microsoft has dabbled with registered developer security features in the past). I'm merely citing a feature I think manages to nail a nice middle-ground between providing warnings without rendering users blind to them, while still leaving folks like us with the ability to install whatever the hell we want.

Re:No explanation for why though? (4, Insightful)

mlts (1038732) | about 7 months ago | (#46929405)

One of the biggest infection vector these days are holes in Web browsers or add-ons. I don't see worms and viruses a common threat these days. It is mainly something from a website or even worse, an ad server. By using adblock, noScript (or the "click to play" functionality in Chrome), and SpywareBlaster's black list, this has kept my machines clean where the AV program is mainly for scanning a download (and even then, for small downloads, VirusTotal does the job better.)

IMHO, an AV maker should take a page from that book and start blocking URLs and bad sites. Some ad company allowing malware to get posted through their server? Block it by IP and/or URL.

So far, this has done a good enough job for protection. I mainly browse the Web in a VM, and when I take the VM offline and scan the disks with a decent AV program, the scans turn out clean.

This doesn't mean AV is useless. Not using it is similar to leaving the key in the ignition when running into a gas station. However, it would be nice if AV programs could build in functionality similar to AdBlock and block not just by IP, but by URL.

Re:No explanation for why though? (4, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 7 months ago | (#46929441)

This is similar to the reason that I think the iPad is what most users really want/need. Techies complain about the walled garden, and how that limits what they can do with the hardware. But that's exactly what end users want. They want to be able to install and use software without thinking about all the bad consequences that could come of it.

Imagine going to a store and buying a toaster. Some toasters would be cheap, but would sometimes catch on fire and burn your house down. Some toasters would be cheap but listen in and record all the conversations going on in your kitchen. Some toasters would be more expensive and actually just toast the bread, without any ill effects. Sure it's the customer's choice which one they buy, and you can tell them to read reviews and be careful, but that's really not a good situation to put the customer in. The customer should have reasonable expectations that the product is safe and isn't trying to be malicious. But when installing software, it's very hard to verify that an unknown program is actually safe or not.

Re:No explanation for why though? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930073)

This. iPads or Windows RT both fit this usage case.

Re:No explanation for why though? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930401)

This is similar to the reason that I think the iPad is what most users really want/need. Techies complain about the walled garden, and how that limits what they can do with the hardware. But that's exactly what end users want. They want to be able to install and use software without thinking about all the bad consequences that could come of it.

That explains why Android is so popular. Oh, right, it's not "Techies" who complain about the wall garden. It's "consumers" who buy into a device "that [doesn't] limit* what they can do with the hardware" and hence has more developers and games/apps--and it's also cheaper. So, perhaps most users need a walled garden for their own protection. But most people want an open garden. Just like how most people want the right to own a gun, but more people are liable to shoot themselves or someone else in a bad way than any sort of useful way. So, yea, that's still not a good reason for inane gun laws (basic training makes sense...and that's about it; but if you think it's hard to get that passed for guns...).

Imagine going to a store and buying a toaster. Some toasters would be cheap, but would sometimes catch on fire and burn your house down. Some toasters would be cheap but listen in and record all the conversations going on in your kitchen. Some toasters would be more expensive and actually just toast the bread, without any ill effects. Sure it's the customer's choice which one they buy, and you can tell them to read reviews and be careful, but that's really not a good situation to put the customer in. The customer should have reasonable expectations that the product is safe and isn't trying to be malicious. But when installing software, it's very hard to verify that an unknown program is actually safe or not.

Yea, because there's government regulation on if you sell a toaster that catches on fire because so many people got sick of houses burning down. Well, perhaps the same thing will happen with software. Is that a good thing? Because I can't imagine enough people choosing a walled garden any more than it was enough to buy a "reliable" brand--which may just be the logo on a 3rd party created--toaster. Of course it'd likely help if said "reliable" brand wasn't needlessly marked up. Really, if Apple gave a fuck about it, they'd cut the price of their iPads drastically--they could still have higher end models, but their lower end models would be just above "toaster spontaneously combusts". But, then, they're in it for the money and the walled garden is more about their control than it is to benefit the user.

Regardless, what users "need" and what they "want" are just way too subjective. Although the whole "listen in and record all conversations going on in your kitchen"? Yea, which manufacturer can you really trust won't do that?

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

ComputersKai (3499237) | about 7 months ago | (#46929625)

Well, often legitimate downloads are sometimes laced with "optional" ad-ware that naive users end up installing, often through some sort of "express installation". Antivirus software may have heuristics and digital signature databases of viruses, but they can't safeguard against human choice and imprudence.

Re: No explanation for why though? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46928841)

Because less attacks are in the form of viruses that AV can automatically detect.

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

Tridus (79566) | about 7 months ago | (#46928859)

Attacks are more sophisticated now, lists of bad things that we've seen before aren't adequate to stop a serious attacker.

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

Rhymoid (3568547) | about 7 months ago | (#46928981)

Perhaps it has always been 55% (or lower). How did they come up with 95%? Perhaps they missed a lot of infections back then, because they didn't know what to look for, and they do know now.

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929607)

Malware writer have figure out how to turn off Symantec. In my company, I knew the PC was infected when the Symantec LiveUpdate is dead. When there are more than 1 million Windows virus, 95% detection rate means thousands of viruses will get through. The problem is that the AV use old technology and haven't figure out better way to detect viruses. For example, how difficult is it to figure out that the exe files that are trigger by registry to run inside Windows Recycle Bin are viruses ? I have manually deleted these viruses because Symantec ignore them. The Windows Registry is a single point of failure. When I installed software to protect Windows Registry, the malware infection in my company reduces. I also created Windows Script to disable autorun and autoplay in every PC. Symantec also update their virus definition files later than other vendors. Usually, I need to remove the malware with another vendor AV months before Symantec AV can detect the viruses.

Maybe that their AV sucks? (5, Informative)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | about 7 months ago | (#46929783)

Good anti-virus still has high detection rates. AV Comparitives puts most virus scanners above 90% detection in their March real world protection test. The better ones are in the 98%+ range. http://www.av-comparatives.org... [av-comparatives.org]

Of course Symantec isn't on that list... perhaps there's a reason :).

Re:Maybe that their AV sucks? (3, Informative)

cellocgw (617879) | about 7 months ago | (#46929937)

There are statistics and then there are useful statistics. If an AV product is capable of catching 95% of all the viruses ever written, you should
A) use it
B) be really worried because you don't know what good it's actually doing.

Remember, 99% (a made-up stat) of all malware is no longer used at all because it's either blocked by every tool in existence or doesn't do something actually useful, like bringing cash to the distributor of said malware.
What matters is what percentage of currently active (and dangerous) malware the AV tool can catch, and further, whether the types of malware it can't catch pose a danger to your personal types of computer usage. As a contrived example, all Flash-based malware is irrelevant if you never visit any Flash-enabled web page (and don't run Flash modules locally either).

Re:Maybe that their AV sucks? (1)

asavage (548758) | about 7 months ago | (#46930413)

I remember when Microsoft first came out with their antivirus it seemed to test quite well compared to other antivirus software. Now it comes with windows 8 it seems to have fallen off the chart which makes sense as any virus writer should make sure it works against a default windows 8 install.

Re:No explanation for why though? (2)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 months ago | (#46930135)

THEIR AV maybe.

Yeah, I believe that without a doubt. I'd have guessed more, to be honest, though.

Re:No explanation for why though? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930141)

we now have a lot of very bad APT rootkits making nests in firmware, pci cards, bios, etc. the whole situation is a mess and no anti malware scanners create/compare checksums of valid firmware in the cloud, nothing scans firmware like graphics cards for example.

until the AV industry steps up and begins to verify/scan every piece of hardware capable of being pwned, it's a lost cause.

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 7 months ago | (#46930145)

Security is a cat-and-mouse game; where the attacker knows everything about the anti-virus. The virus writers can test before releasing their software to make sure Symantec doesn't detect it, so Symantec can never win.

The question is whether they were really getting a 95% rate, or if they were gaming the numbers

Re:No explanation for why though? (3, Insightful)

Bacon Bits (926911) | about 7 months ago | (#46930483)

Viruses used to be targeted at impacting systems. Destroying data. Disabling operations. They were focused on taking your computer down. It was very obvious when you had a virus because your computer was obviously broken. There was no way for a virus creator to make money.

Viruses today are used to steal information, steal resources (network, CPU, etc.), or open access. To function, they require your computer to be on, fully functional, and connected to the Internet. It's trivial to make money with a botnet, meaning viruses are now funded by major criminal business enterprises.

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

TomGreenhaw (929233) | about 7 months ago | (#46930575)

Because some of these companies have discovered that they can sell products that don't work and still make a boatload of money. Declaring AV dead as an excuse to avoid investment in security threat mitigation technology and still sell the product that doesn't work is basically fraud as far as I'm concerned.

We have switched to Sophos which seems to be doing the job. I'd be very interested in hearing opinions of which AV products aren't dead.

Re:No explanation for why though? (1)

chuckugly (2030942) | about 7 months ago | (#46930611)

Symantec, McAfee, etc really never said this AFAICT, it's people promoting other malware solutions and/or being disingenuous by saying that PC AV won't stop non-PC malware such as embedded and mobile devices get. Well no kidding. Clickbait.

Re:No explanation for why though? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930817)

It was always that low, the 95% number of just a marketing gimmick.

Snakeoil (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46928769)

They learned they can sell multiple product lines that do nothing.

It's just marketspeek (2)

timeOday (582209) | about 7 months ago | (#46928771)

Sure they want to sell you something in addition to "anti-virus" software with a fresh new name. But host-based security software isn't going away.

To easy to make new viruses (1)

jfdavis668 (1414919) | about 7 months ago | (#46928791)

It has become so easy to make a virus, that creators abandon old virus methods before anti-virus companies even find out that they existed. Unless they come up with new ways to predict the attacks, they will never keep up.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (-1)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 7 months ago | (#46929085)

How about just ditching windows? The prevalence of viruses and their propagation through windows systems is entirely at the feet of MS and their security. They still install the base user as administrator.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (3, Informative)

afidel (530433) | about 7 months ago | (#46929297)

I guess you haven't used a Windows computer since Vista? Users are NOT administrator by default, heck even the domain account Administrator isn't an admin by default, you have to perform an action which requires elevated permissions and then you get a UAC dialog which is required to actually have an Administrator token. This is not at all unlike how SU works *NIX.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929365)

Except, uh, Windows users are so used to seeing 'Program Helly Kitty Screen Saver wants to: Access Hard Disk' (or whatever fscking meaningless message Windows puts up) that they automatically click 'OK'.

Any time I see a sudo password request in Linux when I'm not running some admin software, I would know it can't be valid, whereas just starting some Steam games brings up that retarded box on Windows.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929529)

How would IdiotUser123 clicking Okay to UAC... be any different than IdiotUser123 entering password for SU Request from HelloKitty.scr?

The only reason is the bar to entry for Linux is higher so it's less likely to entertain idiots. An idiot there would be just as dangerous as an idiot in Windows or Mac.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 months ago | (#46930321)

The main difference is that even IdiotUser123 would know that a screen saver usually doesn't ask for elevated privileges. Unlike Windows, administrator privileges are usually ONLY asked for if you want to mess with the internal workings of the system. Not to install user space stuff.

How would IdiotUser123 know that? That's what using the system would teach him. Using Windows, he has learned that EVERY time he tries to install something that UAC dialog will come and he has learned that he HAS to click yes or it won't work. Using Linux, he would not get such a request for user space programs, so seeing the request for root privileges would be something that strikes him as odd, he usually doesn't get to see that, he only knows that from installing new hardware and drivers for it. Actually, it's even likely he doesn't because those occasions are rare enough that he lets his friend who knows a thing about computers do it for him. And if said friend has more than a brain cell to spare, IdiotUser123 won't even know the root password for that very reason, because all the cases where he'd need it, he'll have to go to his friend anyway.

Well you nailed that one. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930393)

The only reason is the bar to entry for Linux is higher so it's less likely to entertain idiots. An idiot there would be just as dangerous as an idiot in Windows or Mac.

BOOM. Wish I had mod points!

Yeah, an experienced professional welder with a plasma arc in his shop is not as dangerous as some random guy waving one around on the street.

You could argue, though, that since Apple and Microsoft are purposefly marketing to less educated and skillful users, their systems should be required to be more highly engineered for safety. We do require airbags and dual-circuit master cylinders in cars, for example, even though a expert driver in a superbly maintained vehicle will rarely need them.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929923)

Not only that - I know many people who simply turn off UAC because they get annoyed by the elevation dialogs.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (1)

Scutter (18425) | about 7 months ago | (#46929765)

Users are not administrators by default, but so much poorly-written software out there requires local admin rights to run (let alone install) that it's virtually unavoidable.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (2)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 7 months ago | (#46930077)

Which was my point. Until Microsoft forces ISV's to not use admin accounts and to run software and installs as the user this problem will not go away. This is complicated by the fact that with non-admin accounts you have no right access to program files and will need admin rights to install. Every time that dialog comes up makes it more likely people will simply click the dialog to make it go away, this is the key lesson Microsoft still hasn't learned. That elevated dialog is nothing like the SU in Linux because it's used to do things other than alter major system parameters or files..

As a user on Linux I can install software from my user account, I can run that software, delete it and do any of a million things with that software, the only reason I would need SU is to install for more than my user account, or to alter system parameters. No such privilege separation exists in Windows outside hacks like "portable apps" whose functionality should be part of windows. Even with the dramatically turned down UAC Windows still has broken privileges.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (0)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 months ago | (#46930245)

The problem is that you need elevated privileges for every crap you try to poop out in Windows. "You moved the mouse, please hit yes to allow that".

Every single piece of user space program I tried to install lately expected administrative privileges from me. And the problem here is that there is only "all or nothing", either you deny EVERYTHING or you let the program do ANYTHING it wants. There's no sensible in between, there is also no way to tell just WHY that program wants the privileges. A program trying to write into the "program files" folder that is read-only for the normal account, that makes sense. Writing into the "user space" area of the registry, makes sense. But I can only allow this if I also permit the program to mess with system files. Where is the sense in that?

The whole security mess of UAC is some show security, security theater at its finest. Blame shifting, actually, because "it was not Windows that is insecure, see, the user clicked YES, HE is at fault, it's not Windows". BULLSHIT! The system doesn't give the user even remotely any chance to make a sensible decision. Worse, the user only learns from the whole bull that his software only works if he clicks yes, when he clicks no it simply refuses to work. That's what this bullshit teaches people.

It does not improve security for the user. It only improves security for MS because now they can blame the user for their system's shortcomings.

Re:To easy to make new viruses (1)

Salafrance Underhill (2947653) | about 7 months ago | (#46930311)

I had a friend attempt to disable UAC on my laptop, once. He left with a flea in his ear.

Makes sense (3, Insightful)

American AC in Paris (230456) | about 7 months ago | (#46928851)

When the back door was made of cloth and paper, there wasn't much sense in trying to fool the user guarding the front gate. Now that we've locked that down with a steel door and a proper deadbolt, it's a lot easier to try to sneak past the guard--and it's a lot harder to upgrade a guard than it is to upgrade a door.

I think we're entering a period where forensics and an effective legal apparatus are going to become the primary means of defense.

Re:Makes sense (4, Interesting)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 7 months ago | (#46929015)

I noticed my idiot bother-in-laws computer was sitting on a wide open wifi connection, no password, no encryption. Then I looked and the computer had no antivirus, UAC, the Firewall, everything was disabled. I pointed all this out to him and he said "I don't get viruses anymore." So I ran a standard on-line anti-virus product and he had hundreds of infections. I doubt he's done anything with it at all.

The authors of viruses make a profit off your infection by either displaying ads to you, or using your computer to host data or attacks. If they make what they are doing too obvious, you're going to do something about it. So it's in their best interest to make sure you don't notice it. Why fix something that's not bothering you? My brother-in-law has no idea the risks he's taking and likely thinks I'm dumb for bothering him with it. I suspect the majority of the people feel the same way.

Does the nature of the business hold it back (3, Insightful)

Eravnrekaree (467752) | about 7 months ago | (#46928917)

Part of the problem may be the closed source nature of AV itself. I have always wondered if the closed source AV vendors are basically reinventing the wheel and needlessly wasting resources on finding viruses that have already been found by other companies, and that maybe there should be a central virus database that all of the companies would contribute to instead. The model of each company having to independantly find viruses is inefficient and leads to much slower progress on eliminating them. It is wasted time and effort reinventing the wheel, and as well it actually worsens things for users because things do not work as well as they could.

Does anyone here have a recommendation for the best AV software?

What about ClamAV? Is this as good as the closed source AV products?

Re:Does the nature of the business hold it back (1)

erikina (1112587) | about 7 months ago | (#46929035)

I use Avast for AV and Bitcoin Vigil for IDS. Both are free and work well together (although, Avast does noticeably lag my computer -- but less so than competitors)

Re:Does the nature of the business hold it back (2)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | about 7 months ago | (#46929067)

>> Does anyone here have a recommendation for the best AV software?

The built-in Windows AV on modern OS's works OK. (We don't have any machines except test machines older than Windows 7.) I guess I haven't even thought about Symantec or McAfee for the past few years.

>> What about ClamAV? Is this as good as the closed source AV products?

IMHO, it's slower and not as thorough. I wouldn't use it on Windows.

Re:Does the nature of the business hold it back (4, Insightful)

Arker (91948) | about 7 months ago | (#46929327)

The problem is deeper than that. It goes back decades to the very idea of a scanner vs other methods of security. Scanners are good 'solutions' if you dont really want to solve the problem but rather want to profit from it. They are reactive, they require constant updates (which justifies continuing payments) and will absolutely never do more than partially ameliorate the problem. Scanners only find old threats and it's a very old game to just switch bytes around until the scanner says you are clean.

A system actually designed for security would instead focus on behavior and abilities, and look more like SELinux than a traditional virus scanner. It wouldnt care if a program was exceeding its authority because it's a virus or because it's damaged or just because it's poorly programmed - it would prevent it from doing damage regardless.

This is far from impossible, but as an industry we turned away from that road several decades ago, because it's slower, more expensive, and harder to develop for. First to market seems to trump well designed every time. :(

Re:Does the nature of the business hold it back (1)

jbmartin6 (1232050) | about 7 months ago | (#46929565)

You are absolutely correct, this drives me nuts. An illustration from the corporate end user perspective: it is almost impossible to get any information from any AV vendor about WHY a certain signature was triggered. Given the prevalence of false positives with the latest heuristic and reputation-based detections, this information can be absolutely vital to making the correct decisions. But the best you can usually get is 'it is a trojan' or some other vague crap. They seem to view their signatures as some sort of secret sauce that must never be revealed.

Re:Does the nature of the business hold it back (2)

CAIMLAS (41445) | about 7 months ago | (#46929579)

ESET is by far the best I've had the opportunity to use.

Yeah, it's actually worth paying for: it's unobtrusive where it needs to be and I've not seen anything sneak by. The big things that break other AV doesn't hurt ESET. I make it a pre-requirement for anyone who wants my help on their Windows, and so far... no "I've got a virus" type requests. :)

Re:Does the nature of the business hold it back (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929689)

When I was buying AV for a small company ESET is what I used too and was always happy. I still use their online scanner once in a while, just to check, but for home use I just use MSE.

The numbers don't add up. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46928941)

In the article, Redsocks makes the claim that between January and March, the detection rate for something (their own software? Symantec's?) was between 64 and 73 percent. How does this add up to letting through 55% of attacks? Honestly, this sounds more like people waking up and realizing that Norton is badly-coded bloatware, and are uninstalling it and not buying it.

Makes Sense (1)

erikina (1112587) | about 7 months ago | (#46928945)

Sounds about right. I've had at least 3 viruses that have circumvented Norton -- but caught by Bitcoin Vigil (a honey pot based approached to catching malware). I guess it's a combination of outdated signatures, and novel attacks and Antivirus needing to limit its false positives

Re:Makes Sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929313)

The fuck are you doing that causes you to get 3 viruses? Wonder how many you got that were blocked...

Re:Makes Sense (2)

erikina (1112587) | about 7 months ago | (#46929395)

I work in the security field, so I experimentally run hundreds of programs :)

Maybe their piece of crap software (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 7 months ago | (#46928955)

I think they're only talking about their own software. In the last quarter's test at AV-Test, Avast (which is free) detected 100% of known samples and 98% of unknown virus samples. I never figured out how they obtained over 100 "unknown" samples of malware without reporting it to antivirus companies but I think it was an ongoing zero day, detect them as they're released type of thing.

Re:Maybe their piece of crap software (1)

erikina (1112587) | about 7 months ago | (#46929003)

They could just freeze a version for a couple of weeks -- and test it with the new samples. However, I'd be a lot more interested in seeing a ROC curve -- it's pretty easy to have 100% TP if your FP is high ;D

Re:Maybe their piece of crap software (1)

fnj (64210) | about 7 months ago | (#46929125)

I'd be a lot more interested in seeing a Republic of China curve
it's pretty easy to have 100% Tissue Paper if your First Post is high

Boy, you really cleared the whole thing up for me.

Re:Maybe their piece of crap software (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 7 months ago | (#46929161)

No no no, it's: However, I'd be a lot more interested in seeing a Raviolis over Cheddar curve -- it's pretty easy to have 100% Thermal Pasta if your Fried Peanut is high.

Re:Maybe their piece of crap software (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929471)

FYI: TP = True Positive FP = False Positive And ROC curve is a way of graphically showing it. He means if you identify 100% of programs as viruses, you will have excellent "detection rate". So it's important to see how many you get wrong

are you kidding me? (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 7 months ago | (#46928977)

"...are casting doubt on AV, suggesting a focus on data loss prevention might be better"
Oh yes, prevent your data from being deleted or Cryptolocker-ed while you're a spam-sending robot with all your credit card numbers and login passwords being recorded by a rootkit. Great strategy.

Re:are you kidding me? (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 7 months ago | (#46929543)

Data loss prevention is like loss prevention in retail. Its not lost, its stolen. What you're referring to with credit cards and logins ... thats what they are talking about stopping.

Most AV is malware (5, Interesting)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about 7 months ago | (#46929001)

Of all the problems that my relatives have called upon me to fix on their machines AV might be the number one complaint. They buy a machine from some big box store (against my recommendation) and the AV becomes more and more threatening as to the dire situation their machine is in and how only a subscription to their product will solve the problem.

Then to make it worse the AV infests the machine like a spreading cancer. The browsers work funny, the startup is longer, the thing periodically pigs out on the internet. But it might be the popups that are the worst. We have all see the public jumbotron/Kiosk with a big AV popup front and center.

Personally I blame AV bloatware for being one of the downfalls of the PC industry. People were buying their shiny new machines hoping that all their problems would go away and poof their new machine is effectively just as crappy as their old machine with these incomprehensible popups and threats.

My only happiness in this situation is that the AV products haven't managed to get much traction in the mobile device industry.

The key thing to keep in mind is that when you buy a basic PC from a manufacturer that they don't make much if any profit from the machine. It is the kickbacks they get from the crap AV, crap game, and crap music services that come as trialware. So if the AV industry has a business model based upon fooling people, kickbacks, and annoying people; then they can't die too soon.

The horrible thing is that some products like NOD32 were awesome and didn't play those MBA games.

Re:Most AV is malware (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929231)

Canadian delusions should be tht title here

Your arg looked great in 1st par
2nd sours as "you must replace blocked content with something" Even SQUID does such, and so it seems more the bofh sissy- ad ought be more proactive in fine tuning the graphic or lack of graphic displayed, dare I ask if you have any blacklists at all? Im thinking no, which means you really don't care. Don't leave your fsckin mom with a hosts file, deliver an appliance tuned. See now? Even bo bo the clown can plug in the yard (MOWER/ORICK/ZOOMBA) temperature sensor. Oh what's that it's SUNNY today with 800 - 1200 MPH wind gusts and 1400-1600 degrees -- either a nuke has gone off and mom is dust, or your her little fsckin dog chewed up the wires again.

For HARDWARE? I blame mobile devices not AV bloatware. Firefox OS 2013 -- Australis foobar worid tour 2014
So shut up and go buy one of those used dell 960's.. if ya momma has a TV show!

and get pale moon. Reinstall Everything. Piece by piece.

Or. Rollback your clone. that's right you don't have a clone hardware. nevermind.

AV products haven't managed to get much traction in the mobile device industry.
(I almost lost a keyb)

they don't make much if any profit from the machine
abject nonsense! if they didn't there would be NO MORE.

I know life's tough right now. But god damn get it together
AV is great if you want to identify your VIRUS COLLECTIONS
right?

so not sure where your going with this.

Re:Most AV is malware (2)

CAIMLAS (41445) | about 7 months ago | (#46929613)

What do you mean, "were" awesome? NOD32 is still the best game in town. Not sure what you mean by "didn't play those MBA games"...

Re:Most AV is malware (1)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about 7 months ago | (#46930059)

I can't say much about them as I haven't used them in years. My "were" was more my own subjective were. I don't hear much about them but I have never heard anyone in my circle ever complain about them.

Re:Most AV is malware (1)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about 7 months ago | (#46930199)

Sorry for the two replies. But by MBA games I find that many MBA schools teach the wrong half of Game Theory. It seems that most people who leave with an MBA find some metric of success and then beat it to death. Sales are an easy metric and often a good one. But in this case I think that they pushed sales so hard that people began to hate the entire PC experience, let alone the AV experience.

AVG is a good example. Basically you can instal the free version but if you click on the wrong thing( as probably intended) you end up installing a 30 day full trial which then royally amps up the hard sell.

It seems that the original business model of the free AV service was that the home user could get away with basic features for free and would either upgrade for a price. Or would learn to love their AV and then would want it in the enterprise where it was not free at all. But nope, I can see some MBA twat saying something like, "We must monetize these non-performing customers." This probably even worked well for the next few years as not only did they fool those customers into paying but they also would have been able to ride the laurels of their previously good reviews. But in the end the reviews would have long been turning against them and now their very future is in peril.

But I am willing to bet where NOD32 never took the low road that their sales are probably tracking right along with PC sales. But as for the game theory part. I am a firm believer that the abuse that most people suffered at the hands of bloatware is one of the present factors in the plummeting PC sales. I also think that it is a factor for people paying such massive premiums for Apple machines. No default bloatware (unless you include iTunes and iCloud which do piss me off with their in your face crap). But my Apple has never threatened me once.

You could throw in Linux as an option but I am not sure there is a single big box store that will sell you a Linux only machine and in all likelihood they will have found a bloatware version of Linux.

Re:Most AV is malware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929737)

Yup. I couldn't understand how people fell for those cheesy blinking red "YOUR ANTIVIRUS IS OUT OF DATE" messages until I saw Norton AV trial edition on a new computer doing the exact same thing when it expired. The major AV companies have resorted to scare tactics to drum up business.

Re:Most AV is malware (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 7 months ago | (#46930425)

It's my theory that any OS that is secure enough not to get malware is secure enough to not allow AV software.

A user shouldn't be able to install software that scans every other file arriving on the computer, and alters or deletes executable files. If they are allowed to, then they will install every item of malware presented to them.

As illustration I give you iOS. An AV scanner is not technically possible (from anyone other than Apple). 2013 malware threats: zero.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/go... [forbes.com]

Re:Most AV is malware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930861)

But there was malware anyway. It posted to facebook.

Re:Most AV is malware (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 months ago | (#46930441)

I agree completely with the "trial" ware on "new" computers. Personally, I think the first thing to be done when getting such a computer is cleaning out the HD and reinstall the system. That's the only way you can be certain that this pest is gone.

Aside of that, I can't really agree with the sentiment that antivirus is useless. For most people it does serve a very valuable purpose, if, and only if, it is actually antivirus software and doesn't try to be every- and anything from AV to firewall to content filter to popup blocker to spam killer to some internet child-proof lock...

Do one thing. But do it right.

Irresponsible? (2)

unixcorn (120825) | about 7 months ago | (#46929019)

My fear is that some neophyte will read this and believe he doesn't need an anti-virus application anymore because they don't work. While AV applications are not my favorite thing to spend money on, they do have their place for less-then-savvy users who may be surfing or downloading from areas that may not be safe.

Re:Irresponsible? (1)

fnj (64210) | about 7 months ago | (#46929169)

My fear is that some neophyte will read this and believe he doesn't need an anti-virus application anymore because they don't work.

Funny, my take-away was a little different - that AV is no goddam good for nothing.

Re:Irresponsible? (2)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 months ago | (#46930453)

You're listening to Symantec talking about antivirus and security, you're aware of that?

I stop virus etc. BEFORE you get them... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929105)

APK Hosts File Engine 9.0++ 32/64-bit:

http://start64.com/index.php?o... [start64.com]

(Details of hosts' benefits enumerated in link)

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---

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B. ) Hosts add reliability vs. downed or redirected DNS + secure vs. known malicious domains too -> http://tech.slashdot.org/comme... [slashdot.org] w/ less added "moving parts" complexity + room 4 breakdown,

C. ) Hosts files yield more speed (blocks ads & hardcodes fav sites - faster than remote DNS), security (vs. malicious domains serving mal-content + block spam/phish), reliability (vs. downed or Kaminsky redirect vulnerable DNS, 99% = unpatched vs. it & worst @ ISP level + weak vs FastFlux + DynDNS botnets), & anonymity (vs. dns request logs + DNSBL's).

---

Hosts do more w/ less (1 file) @ a faster level (ring 0) vs redundant browser addons (slowing up slower ring 3 browsers) via filtering 4 the IP stack (coded in C, loads w/ OS, & 1st net resolver queried w\ 45++ yrs.of optimization).

* Addons are more complex + slowup browsers in message passing (use a few concurrently - you'll see) - Addons slowdown SLOWER usermode browsers layering on MORE: I work w/ what you have in kernelmode, via hosts ( A tightly integrated PART of the IP stack itself )

APK

P.S.=> Currently adding 2 features to it:

1.) 'Shearing away' trackers you CAN'T see, via code techniques that emulate a netstat -ano albeit on an automated timer to do so, as I did here on slashdot (much like how "PEERBLOCK" operates, but, not using ADDED COMPLEXITY laying in a filtering driver, but instead, using the native Windows firewall, creating rulesets for that much too)

AND

2.) Making it FASTER on its slowest part (Convert & Filter) by breaking the file into 100 parts (which process FASTER already than doing the single large intake I do currently) by August!

... apk

Re:I stop virus etc. BEFORE you get them... apk (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930083)

Your detractors have 0 vs your points on hosts. Only unjustifiable minusmods to try hide your post. They clearly can't disprove your points validly.

AV dead? Symantec's certainly is (5, Insightful)

argStyopa (232550) | about 7 months ago | (#46929183)

I wouldn't use a Symantec product if it was an extinguisher and I was on fire.

Nobody even vaguely familiar with PC support over the last 20 years can possibly fail to be acquainted with what was (is?) the most complicated, agonizing, and laborious process that was removing a Symantec/Norton antivirus "product" from a computer.
Seriously, with a newer machine, just re-installing the OS was far quicker, easier, and less likely to leave you with later issues.

As an AV product, it was not terribly successful in most neutral tests I saw.

If you didn't uninstall it, it was a resource hog, bringing even powerful machines to their proverbial knees when scanning. If you were foolish enough to install the 'suite' of security applications, it would involve literally dozens of services installed obscurely across your system. Removing it was very much like (or worse than) trying to get rid of some of the most tenacious malware I've ever encountered.

Truly, the 'cure' in this case was nearly worse than the disease. They *owned* the PC security market in the early days...why do you think its competitors have been so widely successful?

Re:AV dead? Symantec's certainly is (2)

BitZtream (692029) | about 7 months ago | (#46929561)

In Soviet Russia, McAfee sets you on fire!

Re:AV dead? Symantec's certainly is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930535)

I wouldn't use a Symantec product if it was an extinguisher and I was on fire.

Nobody even vaguely familiar with PC support over the last 20 years can possibly fail to be acquainted with what was (is?) the most complicated, agonizing, and laborious process that was removing a Symantec/Norton antivirus "product" from a computer.
Seriously, with a newer machine, just re-installing the OS was far quicker, easier, and less likely to leave you with later issues.

As an AV product, it was not terribly successful in most neutral tests I saw.

If you didn't uninstall it, it was a resource hog, bringing even powerful machines to their proverbial knees when scanning. If you were foolish enough to install the 'suite' of security applications, it would involve literally dozens of services installed obscurely across your system. Removing it was very much like (or worse than) trying to get rid of some of the most tenacious malware I've ever encountered.

Truly, the 'cure' in this case was nearly worse than the disease. They *owned* the PC security market in the early days...why do you think its competitors have been so widely successful?

You obviously have no experience with these products in at least the last five years. Yes, there was a time they earned a bad reputation, but the current versions are easily uninstalled and are much lighter on resources. In fact, for many users (not the typical Slashdot user), modern AV (incl Symantec AV) can actually increase felt computer performance due to scheduled background maintenance tasks (defrag, for example). Still, like all software, AV products do consume resources and can have a noticeable performance hit, especially on marginal hardware to start with.

Social Engineering. (1)

steeleyeball (1890884) | about 7 months ago | (#46929247)

No amount of Virus protection can prevent Stupidity.

Re:Social Engineering. (3, Insightful)

Notabadguy (961343) | about 7 months ago | (#46929591)

I have a T-Shirt that I got from jinx.com that basically says that.

Front: Social Engineering Expert:
Back: Because there is no patch for human stupidity

Let's see... who has a DLP solution... (1)

mistaryte (2446492) | about 7 months ago | (#46929319)

oh wait, Symantec does!

It was dead at least 5 years ago? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929355)

Or whenever AV apps turned from something that protected your Windows machine from malware into scareware that slowed down the OS more than a virus.

You f4il 1t (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929479)

they're gone Came learn what mis7akes conversation and DOG THAT IT IS. IT

Knew this (0)

koan (80826) | about 7 months ago | (#46929547)

In the last 5 years the only hits I ever got with McAfee or Kaspersky were for legit files (heuristic fumbling in the dark) or the EICAR file.

I use Virtualbox VM's (and a different OS than the host, the more obscure the better) to do all my web surfing and routinely delete then replace the pristine VM, the important stuff (banking, whatnot) gets done on the host and that's all that I do on the host.
No rootkits, "virus", or malware in 5 years (that I can detect of course).

At first it was a hassle, but now I have it polished down to "slim mode" and no expansion on the one bar that shows on the host.

To sum up, anti-virus is essentially worthless for me, as is any "malware" detection app because they have never had a hit.

This isn't news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929649)

I can't believe anyone in the industry hasn't already realized that AV is kind of like the police: they don't really prevent crime, but are there to investigate crime after the fact. For the last 10 years at least, it has been my experience, that none of the really stealthy and dangerous viruses are ever detected by AV. It's good at catching the "script kiddie" sort of stuff, but ineffective at finding anything really dangerous, until it's too late. I don't own any Windows machines any longer, but if I did, I wouldn't even bother with installing AV. All it does is slow down your system. The best AV tool is your brain.

Norton AV used to be a leader but no more (2)

Virtucon (127420) | about 7 months ago | (#46929663)

It's now crapware, sorry but Symantec should now be thoroughly flogged in public for turning a once great, working, AV product into a piece of shit. I can't say much about the other vendors in the AV space, well I can for a few and I don't really trust any of them right now because they all miss shit and have lousy customer support.

Yuo 7ail 1t (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929785)

Parts of you are stupid. to the people playing can YOUR REPLIE?S RATHER

'Attacks' (2)

clickclickdrone (964164) | about 7 months ago | (#46929833)

I suspect the key to the 55% number is the word 'attacks' i.e. not viruses, worms etc but using OS holes and other such exploits.

The problem is.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929897)

that all AV software like this is reactive. Once the malware is out in the wild, it needs to get reported and analyzed and then added to the database. But the people who write the malware use every trick they can think of to evade the detection heuristics.

Don't get me wrong - I am not arguing that one ought not use AV at all, but that AV by itself doesn't provide you with the level of protection that many people might assume that they have.

I stop virus etc. BEFORE you get 'em (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46929985)

APK Hosts File Engine 9.0++ 32/64-bit:

http://start64.com/index.php?o... [start64.com]

(Details of hosts' benefits enumerated in link)

Summary:

---

A. ) Hosts do more than AdBlock ("souled-out" 2 Google/Crippled by default) + Ghostery (Advertiser owned) - "Fox guards henhouse", or Request Policy -> http://yro.slashdot.org/commen... [slashdot.org]

B. ) Hosts add reliability vs. downed or redirected DNS + secure vs. known malicious domains too -> http://tech.slashdot.org/comme... [slashdot.org] w/ less added "moving parts" complexity + room 4 breakdown,

C. ) Hosts files yield more speed (blocks ads & hardcodes fav sites - faster than remote DNS), security (vs. malicious domains serving mal-content + block spam/phish), reliability (vs. downed or Kaminsky redirect vulnerable DNS, 99% = unpatched vs. it & worst @ ISP level + weak vs FastFlux + DynDNS botnets), & anonymity (vs. dns request logs + DNSBL's).

---

Hosts do more w/ less (1 file) @ a faster level (ring 0) vs redundant browser addons (slowing up slower ring 3 browsers) via filtering 4 the IP stack (coded in C, loads w/ OS, & 1st net resolver queried w\ 45++ yrs.of optimization).

* Addons are more complex + slowup browsers in message passing (use a few concurrently - you'll see) - Addons slowdown SLOWER usermode browsers layering on MORE: I work w/ what you have in kernelmode, via hosts ( A tightly integrated PART of the IP stack itself )

APK

P.S.=> Currently adding 2 features to it:

1.) 'Shearing away' trackers you CAN'T see, via code techniques that emulate a netstat -ano albeit on an automated timer to do so, as I did here on slashdot (much like how "PEERBLOCK" operates, but, not using ADDED COMPLEXITY laying in a filtering driver, but instead, using the native Windows firewall, creating rulesets for that much too)

AND

2.) Making it FASTER on its slowest part (Convert & Filter) by breaking the file into 100 parts (which process FASTER already than doing the single large intake I do currently) by August!

... apk

Re:I stop virus etc. BEFORE you get 'em (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930857)

Your detractors have = 0 vs your points on hosts. Only unjustifiable minusmods to try hide your post. They clearly can't disprove your points validly.

Paradigm Shift. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930719)

Malware constitutes the following:
[Injection Method] + [Exploit] + [Persistence or Self-Removal Configuration] + [Payload]

You can jumble around solutions to create a virus.

AV companies have to figure out both signature based and heuristic detection methods as they can't just MD5 and ban files. Malware writers can build files that defy algorithmic description; that self-jumble every time they are copied.

Most viruses can emulate user activities sufficiently that antivirus cannot stop them.

E.G. Cryptolocker. Users have rights to use windows cryptographic processes to encrypt files.

Thus the focus has gone straight to controlling user activities and user data securely. Assume the user is a criminal, what can they do, what can I do to stop them?

Assume the end user will get hijacked; what can they do? Compartmentalize them and their job so the damage done is minimal. E.G. Publishing every application via Citrix Remote applications and setting the interface with the OS on some of them so you cannot copy specific fields in forms. E.G. Websense.

Assume multiple end users will get compromised, Log every attack so each attack becomes a one-trick-pony. E.G. Most Firewalls and their monitoring features.

Assume the end user will take off with their files; encrypt them and setup a system by which the keys are kept locally. E.G. Microsoft RMS or "Next Gen" Firewalls.

This is a big shift in paradigm for security and for Sarbox organizations where compliance objectives trump everything else. It's also a fantastic way to completely decimate an organization, because you limit the ability of organic growth to fudge over incompetent management.

For your Ma' and Pa' business, things have stayed business as usual. And really, there's a whole new set of skills and features big enterprises are expecting out of IT that they will not be able to find in the field or in current certification paths.

I stop virus etc. BEFORE you can get 'em (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46930847)

APK Hosts File Engine 9.0++ 32/64-bit:

http://start64.com/index.php?o... [start64.com]

(Details of hosts' benefits enumerated in link)

Summary:

---

A. ) Hosts do more than AdBlock ("souled-out" 2 Google/Crippled by default) + Ghostery (Advertiser owned) - "Fox guards henhouse", or Request Policy -> http://yro.slashdot.org/commen... [slashdot.org]

B. ) Hosts add reliability vs. downed or redirected DNS + secure vs. known malicious domains too -> http://tech.slashdot.org/comme... [slashdot.org] w/ less added "moving parts" complexity + room 4 breakdown,

C. ) Hosts files yield more speed (blocks ads & hardcodes fav sites - faster than remote DNS), security (vs. malicious domains serving mal-content + block spam/phish), reliability (vs. downed or Kaminsky redirect vulnerable DNS, 99% = unpatched vs. it & worst @ ISP level + weak vs FastFlux + DynDNS botnets), & anonymity (vs. dns request logs + DNSBL's).

---

Hosts do more w/ less (1 file) @ a faster level (ring 0) vs redundant browser addons (slowing up slower ring 3 browsers) via filtering 4 the IP stack (coded in C, loads w/ OS, & 1st net resolver queried w\ 45++ yrs.of optimization).

* Addons are more complex + slowup browsers in message passing (use a few concurrently - you'll see) - Addons slowdown SLOWER usermode browsers layering on MORE: I work w/ what you have in kernelmode, via hosts ( A tightly integrated PART of the IP stack itself )

APK

P.S.=> Currently adding 2 features to it:

1.) 'Shearing away' trackers you CAN'T see, via code techniques that emulate a netstat -ano albeit on an automated timer to do so, as I did here on slashdot (much like how "PEERBLOCK" operates, but, not using ADDED COMPLEXITY laying in a filtering driver, but instead, using the native Windows firewall, creating rulesets for that much too)

AND

2.) Making it FASTER on its slowest part (Convert & Filter) by breaking the file into 100 parts (which process FASTER already than doing the single large intake I do currently) by August!

... apk

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