Currently Being ModeratedOct 24, 2011 8:37 AM (in response to eww)
I see, so the Mac doesn't have any viruses blah blah blah and everyone is just as smart as you so the recent malware attacks aren't a concern either...
The malware attacks are getting more and more clever in their approach. The latest one modifies a file so the Apple malware updates no longer work. This requires either a system restore or reinstall to fix. But no problem, keep telling everyone that they don't need this stuff because you are so smart and will never fall for these types of attacks.
Kinda irresponsible on your part isn't it?
Currently Being ModeratedOct 24, 2011 10:06 AM (in response to jeff26)
Intego's marketing strategy for VirusBarrier has been to spread scares about malware exploits in the lab that, as Intego well knew but never acknowledged, had never been seen in the wild. Even if Intego has now abandoned that dishonest and reprehensible practice (and I don't know whether it has), Intego and VirusBarrier deserve to be shunned. And VB has been widely reported to monopolize system resources, crippling machines on which it is installed — an even better reason to avoid it. Most if not all other commercial anti-malware has the same system-hogging downside.
There is still no malware that can install itself on a Mac running OS X without the user's assistance, and none that is self-reproducing.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 24, 2011 11:47 AM (in response to jeff26)
Anti-virus software will not do a lot to protect you from recent threats. I have a variant of Flashback in my possession, and have had it for nearly 2 months now, that is still only recognized by 5 out of the 43 AV tools that VirusTotal.com can test with. This despite the fact that I've submitted it to a couple different places. If you rely entirely on AV software, you will be infected, sooner or later. Only education can protect you completely... to that end, see my Mac Malware Guide.
That said, I don't have a problem with Intego. Would I put their software on my system? No. I've seen far too many reports of it causing problems. However, I also don't think they're evil fearmongers trying to scare the Mac-using world into buying their software. All AV companies raise a red flag at threats that are not yet in the wild... if they didn't, the world would be caught with its collective pants down if that threat ever appeared in the wild.
I don't recommend installing Intego's software (based on third-hand reports, not personal experience), but I do highly recommend following their Mac Security Blog. There's a lot of good information there.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 24, 2011 1:31 PM (in response to eww)
Your comments are negative to such an extreme, I would suspect that you work for one of their competitors or are a disgruntled ex-employee. Either way, your negative attitude towards this company is weird.
How do you know what their marketing strategy is? I would also question your use of 'widely reported'. So you have no direct experience with the product?
Lastly, malware by definition is not self-producing, that would make it a virus.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 24, 2011 1:49 PM (in response to jeff26)
Jeff: My negative attitude toward Intego is based on reading their misleading advertisements and many reports from users of these forums (in which I've participated daily since they were created around 1994) about the crippling effect of VB on their machines, which was remedied in all cases simply by uninstalling VB.
I agree with Thomas that it is legitimate for companies in the security industry to warn users about potential (unrealized) vulnerabilities as they are discovered. I don't think it is legitimate to pretend that such potential vulnerabilities are imminent threats, for the purpose of selling software that frequently hobbles the computers of people who buy it. That's what Intego has done for years.
Regarding your paranoid and unfounded suspicions about me, I am not and never have been associated with any company in the computer or software industries and have no substantial investments in any such company, including Apple. I do not work for anyone. I am retired.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 24, 2011 2:21 PM (in response to eww)
OK, I accept that you aren't just an angry ex-employee. Do you think Intego's advertising is any more misleading than any other AV company? I think AV vendors are in a tough space. If they squawk about something they find, they are accused of crying wolf in order to sell more product. If some nasty thing comes out, as it did in March, everyone then flocks to the same AV vendors and demands that they handle the threat. When something nasty is actually found, how do they know if it is 'the' one or just another piece of test junk out of Russia? Kind of hard to be anything more than a bum in spite of the fact that they all spend huge amounts of money researching and analyzing threats. It just seems kind of unfair to have such a negative reaction towards them or any AV vendor. Yes, they are all trying to make money, but it's not like they are selling registry cleaners. Even Apple had to change their position after the March attacks.
I have heard negative performance problems leveled at every AV vendor out there, even the 'free' ones. Is the Intego product really any better or worse?
I'm not actially 'paranoid', just curious when I see comments that seem to imply a more negative position that the situation seems to warrant.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 24, 2011 8:33 PM (in response to jeff26)
The question Gloria asked was specifically about Intego VB, not about any other AV software. I replied about Intego VB, not any other AV software. I have not claimed Intego VB is any worse than any other commercial AV package, and in fact I don't believe it is any worse — all of them that I'm aware of have been credibly reported to burden and impair the machines they run on (unlike ClamXav, which I have, though I almost never use it). Nor have I said Intego's advertising is any worse than any other AV developer's. It may not be — I don't pay any attention to any AV advertising. I did take notice, though, when Intego was roundly castigated in the computer press and in these forums for making misleading claims of providiing protection against menaces that turned out to exist only in the lab. If other companies are doing the same thing, they may be as bad as Intego. That doesn't matter to me because I don't want any AV software, and until I feel a need for some, I'll avoid them all — with a special aversion for Intego, which I know has behaved in a way I don't intend to support. If the day comes when I want AV software, I'll try to buy a package that doesn't cripple my computer from a company that doesn't offend my notion of fair advertising. I hope that combination will be available.
Now I'm done here.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 25, 2011 8:14 AM (in response to eww)
Not to be pedantic here, but the thread intrigues me. I have seen other cases where someone comes out and blasts a particular company on a public forum and it has always struck me as odd that someone could develop what seems to be a personal vendetta against a specific product.
In your post above you state "I did take notice, though, when Intego was roundly castigated in the computer press and in these forums for making misleading claims of providiing protection against menaces that turned out to exist only in the lab."
By making 'misleading claims of providing protection' do you mean they claimed to protect against something that it turns out they didn't, or did they claim to protect against something that never made it into the wild? In the former case, I would agree with you that no company gets a 'pass' if they claim to do something when they actually don't, but in the latter case, are you suggesting that an AV company not put protection in their products for crud they find in their labs until it gets into the wild? That certainly doesn't make any sense, I doubt there is any way to determine what will actually get out into the real world and what won't. Or are you suggesting that they don't talk about a new threat they find until it gets into the wild? Personally I would prefer to know that they have my back, that's what I am paying them to do. Just my perspective though.
As far as whether an AV company should talk about whether they can handle some new threat that has been found, I actually like it when some new Windows or Mac thing is found that my AV can handle it so I don't have to be concerned. Whether it actually makes it to my machine or any machine is less of an issue, I just want to know that it won't affect me. So, not sure I agree with you on the 'only found in the lab' issue.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 25, 2011 9:38 AM (in response to jeff26)
Jeff, I can't believe you don't see any difference between saying "We've discovered vulnerability XYZ in our research labs and designed our software to protect you against it if it ever gets loose," and trumpeting, "XYZ exists, and our software protects you against it!" Neither is a lie, but the second version is a scare tactic. If the distinction is lost on you, I give up.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 26, 2011 5:49 AM (in response to eww)
I see the distinction, but in your example I have to admit it is pretty subtle. I looked at a couple of AV sites and can see examples of what you are talking about, but nothing I would personally consider 'extreme'. To me there are maybe three positions they can take. One is 'OMG this thing we found will destroy you if you don't buy our product'. Second is 'We found this, it does X and Y' and a third might be 'We found this, it does X and Y and by the way our product will find it if necessary and protect you'. The first example seems to be what you are talking about, and I fully agree with you that it is a scare tactic. That said, I cannot find any examples of AV companies doing this. I may not be looking in the right places though.
The second and third examples don't bother me for this reason: At the end of the day if the AV companies can't actually sell their prodiuct, they can't afford to have teams and labs looking for this stuff. Nobody is going to do it for free, the world just isn't that altruistic. The free AV products get their research from the published work of the companies that sell product or they make their money somewhere else and it makes business sense to fund the research. They still want to sell you something. I remember from college economics the theory of TANSTAFL. There Ain't No Such Thing As a Free Lunch.
It's a pretty subjective line you are ta;lking about, it just seems that you have the bar set pretty low. Do you have any examples of the 'sky is falling' messaging?
Currently Being ModeratedOct 26, 2011 9:01 AM (in response to jeff26)
To be honest... just looking at the two sites... ClamXav and Intego... ClamXav seems much less "the sky is falling" going in favor of the "these are the facts" approach. In fact, I've never read the ClamXav home page... but what they say is pretty much exactly what I would tell anyone asking about antivirus software on a Mac. Basically, I would have no problem quoting what ClamXav has on their site. I think quoting what Intego has on there site would come across as being a bit alarmist. I can certainly say if I quoted what is on the Intego site to someone asking about antivirus software for their Mac, I would instantly get tons of people responding. But hey, they're selling a product. I don't find what they say to be nearly as offensive as what some other companies try to do (namely the fake pop-ups telling you that your system is infected and you must download their app to fix it). I also like that ClamXav offers useful best practices suggestions... which is really the best way of avoiding getting nasties on your system.
Back in the days before OS X, the number of viruses which attacked Macintosh users totalled somewhere between about 60 and 80. Today, the number of viruses actively attacking OS X users is none. However, this doesn't mean we should get complacent about checking incoming email attachments or web downloads.
Firstly, there's no guarantee that we Mac users will continue to enjoy the status quo, especially as there is now a small handful of trojans for OS X, but more importantly, the majority of the computing world uses machines running MS Windows, for which an enormous quantity of viruses exist, so we must be vigilant in checking the files we pass on to our friends and colleagues etc.
For example, if you're a wise person and you've turned off MS Office's macro support then you're not going to notice that virus which is hiding inside this month's edition of Extreme Ironing.doc which your friend sent you. If you then forward that document to a less wise person who has not turned off the macro support, then you have most likely just sent him a shiny new Pandora's Box with a sign saying "Open this end"!
Flippancy aside, I'm sure you get the idea: check the file before opening and/or sending it on to someone else. This gives you the opportunity to avoid the file altogether or at least copy and paste any vital information into a new document and send that instead.
Don't forget, if you run VirtualPC or VirtualBox or use any other means to run MS Windows software on your Mac, you can still become infected within that environment and lose valuable data on your Mac. These programs will run almost any Windows application you tell it to - virus or no virus - it doesn't know the difference. Note that ClamXav can only protect you against malware which you download and check on the Mac, so you may still want to install other antivirus software within your Windows environment.
Way back in 2004, I was looking for a low cost solution for scanning emails, documents and downloads for viruses. The open-source ClamAV project seemed to fit the bill and I used it for a few months, but soon tired of using the command line to operate it, so I took it upon myself to develop a graphical front-end in my own spare time. ClamXav was the result.
Since then, numerous features have been requested and implemented, and ClamXav has gone from strength to strength. When ClamXav turned 5 years old in September 2009, I released an new version, ClamXav 2.0, built from the ground up with an entirely new interface. It remained as beta software for about 18 months before finally being unleashed.
I hope you like ClamXav and use it a lot and that it helps keep you and your friends/colleagues virus-free. Although I'm providing ClamXav for free, I am increasingly spending more and more time developing it and would really appreciate if you would consider making a donation please. All donations (no matter how small) are gratefully received and would be a huge incentive to help me work on future versions of ClamXav, but more importantly I rely on donations to pay for my bandwidth costs. Please consider it.
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