07-23-2008 12:53 AM - edited 07-23-2008 01:07 AM
I've been in your situation myself. I had a client with a heap of PC's and he seemed desparate to do anything other than pay out one sheckle on internet / AV protect. A friend of a friend told him that "... and you can get perfectly good free AV / NIS security from ..."
Yep and the tooth fairy will grant your every wish.
It is a commercial decision. There are a large number of alternative on the market - competitive market, what do you do?
I was dull enough to pay for and test most of the alternatives.
NIS2008 blew the others off the PC. It's not just protection but stability, compatability, support, and capacity to meet the emerging threats. Symantec has all of those bases covered in pretty logos. If people want free AV or firewalls ... cool. They deserve what happens to them - many of these are backdoors to their systems written by criminal.
Cyber crime? It's enormously cost effective. A criminal with a gun can rob a few people and stands a reasonable chance of being caught. An accountant can steal more in one night than a career criminal can in their lifetime. A cyber criminal ... no limits. Risk of capture ... way on the deck. Payoff to risk ... sickeningly high.
It's IT war ... not sure its ever one we can 'win'. Prolonged stalemate ... yeah, maybe.
My decision was wholly based on results / performance and features ... I knew what I wanted and why I wanted it, your clients might not. Money was a factor but anyone who quibles over a few bucks to make certain they are protected earns the Darwin Award - dull, eventual extinction. It's like going to war with clubs rather than guns because the clubs were on sale. It happens ...
I am seeing proof of a disturbing trend. Criminal hackers are hijacking sites (obtained through google searches on AV / security) . They distract you with something - a warning perhaps. While you sort that out they are going through your system to find vulnerabile points (open ports etc) All attempted to install files (intruders / loggers / hacking tools). Many came from Russia ... they shed IP's too rapidly to catch and they are very good at what they do. BTW - most people freeze if a screen warning pops up saying "Press here your PC is under attack ... stop virus xxx". They do anything and they install the payload. They do nothing and another payload is quietly looking for a way in ... it works almost all the time especially on kids, non technical peopleand older adults. The bad guys do it because it works.
NIS2008 was better on this occasion - not a criticsm. The criminals always try to disable their strongest threat - NAVPRO and NIS2008 are their primary threats based on the effort they go to disable them.
Now, if you clients use older less capable products then they are OK to the extent they don't use the internet and no-one connects to any network or uses a USB key or CD or floppy. Apart from those caveats ... they should keep their money in their wallets.
If they are successfully attacked then so long as they are very lucky, the worst that might happen is their infrastucture will be used by criminals for kiddy porn servers or spam servers. If they are not so lucky - commercial secrets will be public knowledge and their accounts will be emptied ... over time.
How long is a piece of string? The imagination is limitless.
I almost went dark side ... and yes, I had fun taking over someone's PC and making their Cd open and close or making their browser go onto a porn site while I was sitting at home watching them in real time. That was a while ago ... technology moves rapidly.
All hackers use a mix of behavioural techniques and technical tricks to do a few things: get your PC, get your money, make money, steal commercial secrets, plant incrimating information and cause nuisances by altering / deleting files.
If I had want to ... I could have planted kiddy porn onto a person's PC and they would be in jail. Someone wanted to pay me to destry their business competitor ... it's a rough place at times.
NIS2008 costs a pittance - seriously. We all place value on our time. On one episode where I was protected, I saved at least 15 hours of my own time because NIS2008 stopped the bad people. That was worth about $3,000 to me at the time ... yep, they need to upgrade. It's IT evolution - adapt or perish.
Are we their yet <g>
Good luck ... some people may not like to face reality so ...