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McAfee update exterminates Excel

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    McAfee update exterminates Excel

    For a brief period on Friday, McAfee's security tools killed more than viruses.

    An error in McAfee's virus definition file released Friday morning caused the company's consumer and enterprise antivirus products to flag Microsoft's Excel, as well as other applications on users' PCs, as a virus called W95/CTX, Joe Telafici, director of operations at McAfee's Avert labs, told CNET News.com.
    "At about 1 p.m. PST we started getting reports that people were seeing an unusual number of W95/CTX infections in their environment," Telafici said. "Files that we did identify would probably be deleted or quarantined, depending on your settings."

    When a file gets quarantined, it's renamed and moved to a different folder. McAfee's antivirus software detected Excel.exe and Graph.exe, two Microsoft Office components, as well as other software, including AdobeUpdateManager.exe, an application installed alongside Adobe products that deals with software updates, Telafici said.
    About 100 customers, individuals as well as corporations, reported the problem, Telafici said. McAfee, the world's second largest antivirus software vendor, rushed to fix the mistake. Consumers were automatically reverted to the older definition files at about 2:30 p.m. and an update was pushed to corporate users an hour later, he said.
    The issue affected only desktop antivirus software, not McAfee's network-level products that scan e-mail, Telafici said. Also, the incorrect detection occurred only if the user ran a manual virus scan or during a scheduled scan, not during idle time or background scanning, for example, he said.

    Such problems with security software are called false positives and they happen occasionally. McAfee typically has to do an emergency release of a virus definition file once every three months because of a false positive issue, Telafici said. "This is our once for the quarter I think," he said.
    However, this time around it was a particularly big goof, because the company faulted Excel, Telafici admitted. "Usually, it is either custom applications or applications that did not exist at the time we wrote the signature file," he said.
    McAfee has been able to pinpoint the cause of the problem and hopes it can avoid it in the future, Telafici said.
    The problem occurred with virus definition file 4715, which was released at about 10:45 a.m. on Friday as part of McAfee's daily update cycle. The repaired, emergency-definition file 4716 was pushed out at about 3:30 p.m.
    CNet
    McAfee
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    #2
    Re: McAfee update exterminates Excel

    McAfee is not alone in making false-positive. If you can remember last year, Microsoft's AntiSpyware software indicated Norton Anti-virus as being malicious software.
    {o,o}
    |)__)
    -"-"-

    O RLY?

    Comment


      #3
      Re: McAfee update exterminates Excel

      sweet - atlast someone flagged excel
      "The sky is my dome and the earth is my prayer mat"
      - - -
      "Verily the ink of a scholar is more holy than the blood of a martyr"

      Comment


        #4
        Re: McAfee update exterminates Excel

        I hate these aggressive AV softwares. Symantec wouldn't let me keep my Cain&Abel on my computer, I'm just so upset.
        An Android a day keeps the Apple away!

        Comment


          #5
          Re: McAfee update exterminates Excel

          ^^
          Try l0phtCrack also called LC5 it was acquired by Symantec itself.
          You can also try John the Ripper.

          Comment


            #6
            Re: McAfee update exterminates Excel

            C&A is not just for password cracking. There's tons of other things I need that for. I do have the others but they don't do the trick.
            An Android a day keeps the Apple away!

            Comment


              #7
              Re: McAfee update exterminates Excel

              Originally posted by itsme01
              sweet - atlast someone flagged excel
              I have always prefered Quattro so I am all good
              hmhmmm....
              Life is straight as a jalebi, sweet yet...Twisted!

              Comment


                #8
                Re: McAfee update exterminates Excel

                mcafee, norton, panda are just bollocks. Best I have had to doate is Nod32 -fast, small and updates usually more than once a day.

                Mcafee v4 was good since then it's become blotted and to much like norton with determining the best cause of action itself, along with heirstics which dont work.

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