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Testing and Accountability

AMTSO (the Anti-Malware Testing Standards Organization) is a coalition of security professionals, including many antivirus product vendors, product testing organizations and publishers, and some interested individuals. Given the highly technical nature of its activities, it is inevitable that the organization owes some of its authority to the expertise of the security specialists within its ranks, but that doesn’t make it a vendor lobby group.

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Norton Utilities Premier – New!

Sad but true: that new computer isn’t going to last forever and, especially if you’re not careful, neither will all its precious data.  Over time, once-zippy computers can start to lag, getting bogged down with unnecessary programs, too many temporary files, broken registry keys and all sorts of other digital gunk.  What’s more, hard drive failure, theft and natural disasters can wipe out your precious files in an instant – music collections, treasured photos and financial documents that could be lost forever. 

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SONAR 3: A new level of behavioral security in Norton 2011

This year we have some innovative changes that build upon the successful, effective, and efficient SONAR 2 behavioral security engine. For those who are not familiar with SONAR technology, here is a link to an article that describes it. With SONAR 2, we have a proven track record of being able to convict malware and secure Norton users from malware designed to evade most other security features.

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What’s new in Norton Internet Security 2011

The new Norton AntiVirus 2011 and Norton Internet Security 2011 beta products include several new and improved features which I'm going to detail here.

Security Features


Reputation Scan

In our 2009 products, we introduced Norton Insight which dramatically improved performance by not scanning known good files.

In 2010 products, we went one step further by using reputation data to mark files as good, bad or unknown.

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Norton SafeWeb - increasing online comfort and confidence

(view in My Videos)

Sometimes you need a bodyguard, sometimes you need an advisor


 
Most often, users are concerned about dangerous, active threats against their computer.


If malware is detected on the PC, users generally prefer that it is simply and quietly blocked. Similarly, when users are online, they expect to be protected from pages that contain malicious content or that are part of phishing scams.

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The Latest in the Threat Landscape - Web Based Attacks: February 2009

As we talk to consumer and enterprise customers, we are finding many don’t understand the risks of the Internet today, why their computers have been compromised or how the threat landscape has really changed.  The fact that just visiting your favorite Web site can either lead to malware silently being installed on your computer WITHOUT ever clicking on anything, or being plagued by misleading applications, such as fake antivirus software, seems to be a surprise to many users and IT managers.

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Apple Announces the iPad

As I write this--about 15 minutes before Apple's "Newest Creation" event is set to begin--I feel, if the hype is to be believed, that I am writing this on a piece of papyrus, musing on the concept of the printing press.  I think it is fair to say that this morning's presentation is the most anticipated technology announcment in Apple's history, if not of all time…and we are not even sure if Apple's actually going to announce it!

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Anybody need PC help?

It seems like having a computer equates to having PC problems.  We've all been there.  You are sitting at your desk and your computer's speed is crawling while you are trying to get something done.  Very frustrating.  It's not clear what the problem is exactly, but it is clear that your computer isn't running as fast as it use to.  You think maybe it's all of the music and photos you've downloaded?  Or maybe it's just the fact that your computer is a couple of years old? 

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Macworld 2009

As Alec Baldwin remarked in State and Main, "Well, that happened." Pretty much sums up this year's MacWorld Expo, which ended this week in San Francisco.  As I have done for several years (my first ad was in 1985), I made the annual pilgrimage to Moscone Center to meet up with my fellow Mac-heads, eager to see what was happening with Apple and other software and hardware makers and just enjoy what the world might be like if

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Yo Joe!

It’s G.I. Joe week here at Norton, and to celebrate the upcoming movie [www.norton.com/gijoe], we want to give you stuff! Okay, maybe we’re going to make you work for it. Just a little, though.

Here’s the deal: follow us on Twitter (@nortononline) this week. The first 50 new people to follow us after this message is posted will receive (2) free Fandango movie passes. Just for showing up. Really, it’s that easy.

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Norton Internet Security 2010 Beta

Norton Internet Security 2010 Beta

Welcome to the Norton Internet Security 2010 and Norton AntiVirus 2010 Public Beta!


We’re really excited about his year’s version of Norton Internet Security 2010 and Norton AntiVirus 2010. We’ve made significant improvements to our existing features, as well as added a few new ones. We’ve also included support for Windows 7, the new upcoming version of Microsoft’s popular operating system.

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TwitViewer.net - Or How Something That Sounds Too Good to Be True Usually Is

The message might have come in early yesterday on your Twitter feed, "Want to know whos stalking you on twitter!?: http://twitviewer.net/" You might have clicked the link to visit the website. It all happened so fast, the fabulous offer (heck yeah, I want to know who the last 200 people are to look at my Twitter profile!) and the large scale distribution of the "tweet".
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Live from WWDC 2009

Symantec's Mac product manager, Mike Romo is attending the Apple WW Developer Conference in San Francisco this week and shares some thoughts from this morning's keynote address in this video...Message Edited by Sondra_Magness on 06-08-2009 05:41 PM
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Cloud AntiVirus Forecast: Foggy, with a Chance of Irrelevance

We’ve been hearing a lot about cloud computing lately. Seems like just about anything you can tuck away into the clouds gets better, or so the story goes, since it allows everyone to access it from anywhere and harness the power of humongous databases full of useful information, among other benefits. Sure enough, the recent RSA conference had its fair share of hype on cloud computing and it has been mentioned to do everything from change security as we know it to solving the imminent swine flu pandemic.

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Symantec Comments on PIFTS.exe

 Symantec released a diagnostic patch "PIFTS.exe" targeting Norton Internet Security and Norton Antivirus 2006 & 2007 users on March 9, 2009. This patch was released for approximately 3 hours (4:30 - 7:40 PM March 9, 2009 Pacific Time). In a case of human error, the patch was released by Symantec "unsigned", which caused the firewall user prompt for this file to access the Internet. The firewall alert for the patch caused understandable concern for users and began to be reported back to Symantec. Releasing a patch unsigned is an extremely rare occurrence that does not
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Are game accounts getting stolen? Really?

How crazy is it that cybercriminals are designing malware to steal log-ins for our online game accounts? Are they really that valuable? I can understand wanting to steal my credit card or bank account number. I can understand wanting to steal my identity so they can open new credit accounts in my name and stick me with the bill.

 

But, my game account? Really?

 

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One MILLION websites compromised

In the old days, practicing “safe Internet” meant staying in the good online neighborhoods so you didn’t get infected. Today, almost any website you visit could be a landmine leading you to having your system compromised.  We all remember the quote from Austin Powers where Dr. Evil says “One MILLION dollars”. Now imagine a techie version of Dr. Evil, let’s call him “Dr. Drive-by” saying in that same tone “One MILLION websites compromised”. Drive-by download outbreaks can be measured in how many occurrences a particular domain name occurs in Google searches.

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Head in the Clouds


I've been doing a lot of thinking about Cloud Computing lately.  This was sparked, in large part, by Symantec's internal engineering conference, Cutting Edge, as well as a number of things I've been reading.  Cloud Computing is shaping up to be one of the "next big things" that we are all going to be hearing a lot about over the next couple of years.  In fact,
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Norton Insight: A solution to performance improvement without sacrificing security

Hello, my name is Kunal Karandikar and I am a Manager on Symantec’s Consumer Products Engineering team. My colleagues and I are excited about Norton Insight, a brand new feature to the 2009 Norton product line. There have been a lot of questions about how it works and what it does. In fact, there have been a few articles published recently that have compared Norton Insight with other technologies which we think are actually somewhat different, and believe do not really match up well to our new feature.

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Twitter Users Attacked by Phishing Efforts

Email, cell phones, Facebook and now Twitter all have something in common: they are being used by fraudsters for phishing attacks. If you are a Twitter subscriber you should be aware of these recent phishing efforts and how to protect yourself. You may even have received a warning from Twitter in the past few days.

Here's the short and sweet (if I were really good at Twittering, I'd write this entry in 140 character segments but I'll spare you in the interest of getting you the facts):

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Pwned: The John4356783 Story

A year ago we reached out to the gamer community at DreamHack in Sweden to find out what they wanted from their anti virus software and more specifically what they didn’t want. Their biggest request was for anti virus that didn’t use up precious PC resources.  They also asked for security software that wouldn’t interrupt them when they were gaming. Some of them even asked for anti virus that would automatically change its mode of operation to accommodate them appropriately when they were gaming versus when they were surfing.

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The Shoemaker’s Children

You remember the Shoemaker’s lesson, don’t you?  It’s always the shoemaker’s children go barefoot. And so it was that after thirty years of writing about PCs and wagging my finger at those who tempted fate by not backing up regularly, I did it myself.  The entire episode has made me feel a little addle-brained, a lot chagrined, and like a cautionary tale.

 

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The Norton Pulse Updates Feature

The Norton Pulse Updates Feature

 

Summary

It’s a simple truth: The faster virus definitions are received, the better the protection is for the computer. Norton 2009 has added a new technology, called Norton Pulse Updates, which downloads new virus definitions almost as soon as they are created, without sacrificing reliability or performance.

 

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Are you Naked? Exploits from the latest Microsoft Vulnerability seen in the wild

Are you Naked?  Exploits from the latest Microsoft Vulnerability seen in the wild

Which is worse, being seen naked running down the street or having a vulnerable computer leaving you exposed to attacks from drive-by downloads?   It is probably a matter of opinion (or local laws.)  Unfortunately, I think people are more concerned about being seen naked than whether they have a computer that is vulnerable.   Don’t get caught being exposed by having a vulnerable system!

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Zero-Impact Meets Zero-Gravity

This past weekend I was joined by an international group of journalists and bloggers for a Zero-Gravity flight to “blast off” the launch of the Norton 2009 security products. This 18-person “band of brothers” boarded the G-Force One in Las Vegas, prepared to float, flip and fly the way orbiting astronauts do. One word describes the experience - awesome. But most people want to know, what in the world does a Zero-G flight have to do with security software?

 

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Introducing Norton Labs

Today, the Norton team is excited to introduce Norton Labs, an online community where users can download new security technologies and share input directly with developers-- ultimately helping to shape our future products and features. 

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Welcome to the Norton Protection Blog

This Blog is dedicated to you - as a past, present or future user of our products.  A large team of our product managers, engineering, testers and designers will regularly be posting directly to this blog.  Each of us care passionately about security, and share the responsibility to design, develop and test the solutions that protect our customers. 

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Who are you on the Web?

The Boston Globe had an article recently on how difficult it is to be anonymous in the internet age.  Reading the article compelled me to perform my every-once-in-a-while "googling" of myself.  What I found was pretty interesting.

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Summer fun: beaches, bbq's...iPhone apps?

So, this is a bit of a deviation from our standard security-focused articles, but given how you can't go 15 minutes without hearing about the iPhone 3G, I think it's appropriate to bring it up.  I have an original iPhone (4GB!) and was able to successfully download the new iPhone software before the mad rush and figured I would share some observations after a full week or so of using the software.

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