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Email Antivirus

ICSA Labs Virus Prevalence Survey 2001 found that 83% of viruses are transmitted via e-mail. Email borne viruses pose an extreme threat to you or your organization. Internet borne viruses such as "Loveletter" and "Nimda" propagate via email at an alarming rate causing billions of dollars worth of damage. In fact, the Loveletter virus alone cost business $8.75 billion in damages, and analysts all agree that the number of virus attacks is on the increase. Extreme virus attacks call for extreme levels of defense. The only way to stop many of today's viruses is through a well-orchestrated multi-tier antivirus policy, allowing no room for invasion. Email protection is your key weapon in the war against viruses and a vital component in your overall virus defense strategy.

These days, almost everybody has had, or knows someone who has had, a computer virus. These self-replicating programs are generally much more dangerous than a stand-alone malicious program -- they tend to spread super-linearly rather than linearly, and are therefore more likely to become widespread, and to be passed on to someone outside the company.

The threat is also a rapidly changing one. Currently, between 300 and 600 new viruses appear each month, which corresponds to 10 or 20 new viruses per day. Viruses now exist which infect diskettes, program files, Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, Java applications, Access databases, batch scripts, and more.

Clearly, up-to-date anti-virus software is the answer, so that you can prevent viruses (rather than simply detecting them after they infect computers inside the company).

AV-Test.org examined twenty antivirus products on each of the following platforms: MicrosoftWindows 95/98, NT/2000, XP, and ME. Testing included detection of ITW viruses with both the on-access (realtime) and on-demand (manual, requested) scanners and the entire Zoo collection for on-demand scanning. The products tested were: Antivirus Personal Edition (H+BEDV), AVG (Grisoft), AntiVirenKit (GData), AntiVirus eXpert Pro (Softwin, Central Command), Command AntiVirus (Command Software Systems), Dr. Web (Igor Daniloff), eTrust EZ Antivirus (Computer Associates), eTrust InoculateIT (Computer Associates), F-Prot Antivirus for Windows (Frisk), FSAV (F-Secure), Kaspersky AV, formerly known as AVP (Kaspersky Labs), MKS_Vir (Marek Sell), Norman Virus Control (Norman Data Defense), Norton AntiVirus 2002 (Symantec), Panda Antivirus Platinum (Panda Software), PC-cillin (Trend Micro), RAV (GeCad), Sophos Anti-Virus (Sophos), McAfee VirusScan (Network Associates), and VirusScan Corporate (Network Associates). For the purposes of this review, which focuses on home-user versions only, Sophos, VirusScan Corporate, and InoculateIT were removed as each is designed for corporate use. It should be noted that of the three, both Sophos and VirusScan achieved 100% detection of ITW viruses in the testing.

ITW test results

Of the remaining products, those achieving 100% detection of ITW viruses with both the on-access and on-demand scanners were: Command AntiVirus (Command Software Systems), Dr. Web (Igor Daniloff), F-Prot for Windows (Frisk), Norman Virus Control (Norman Data Defense), Norton AntiVirus 2002 (Symantec), and Panda Antivirus Platinum (Panda Software).

Guardster recommends using an antivirus program at all times. We personally use Norton AntiVirus on all of our office computers.

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