Monday, August 4, 2008

I don't use an Antivirus, because I have never been infected...

... said the user while his computer was crippled with malware. His answer didn't make sense, because how would he know that he was (never been) infected if no scanner would alert him?
He asked for my help because his Internet Explorer browser crashed frequently and his computer was crawling. Although he did get popups as well, he didn't really see this as a problem because he had a good popup blocker. O_o
No way malware was causing this (according to him). It has always been like that..... (so you can imagine how long he was infected already...)
And yes, I've found malware from years ago: DollarRevenue crap, EliteMedia, leftovers from the Alcan worm, and a recent Zlob Media variant.

Time to make him aware that his computer really is infected, so the only way to show him the facts is to install an Antivirus....
He was shocked once the scanner started to detect and delete the files. Funny part here was, a HUGE amount of infected files were present in his Limewire shared/complete folder (because of the Alcan Worm, which was luckily already disabled). So it was an extra shock for him since more than 1000 files were already detected and deleted there.
After all, we could clean everything and I'm sure he would never uninstall his Antivirus again. :-)
A shocktherapy is really needed once in a while.

Recently I've been reading many articles, blogposts, discussions about Antivirus Software and Security Suites. Which one is the best and if it's really needed nowadays since a lot of malware can bypass Security software, or scanners don't even detect it.
If I read this, then I'm always wondering what these people actually do online if they are complaining that their Security Software couldn't prevent or detect the infection they are dealing with. Ofcourse you'll get infected if you use 4 different P2P managers and download everything from there. Ofcourse you'll get infected if you visit illegal sites. Ofcourse you'll get infected if you click every link in your mails.
Even with the best Security Software installed, you can get infected if you visit the sources where malware is lurking.
You can even get infected by visiting a (compromised) legit site.
So why blaming your Security software? Also, A LOT of people only install an Antivirus after they got infected... in order to remove the malware... and if it fails to remove the malware, then they complain.

So YES, an Antivirus / Security Software is really needed, not necessarily to remove the malware, but to PREVENT the malware in the first place. It can prevent/detect/delete a lot of malware, but can't prevent all since a lot of new malware is created everyday. After all, it's still better to prevent 80% of the malware than no detection/prevention at all.

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