Feeds

Automatic graylisting of unwanted software

Maximum security, minimal effort

High performance access to file storage

As network perimeters become ever more porous, and endpoint security becomes even more critical, companies today are struggling with the problem of unwanted software - whether it's new, unknown, and potentially malicious software, or simply known but non-business applications.

Now, a new approach to endpoint security known as automatic graylisting is enabling IT professionals to regain control over spyware, malware, and other unwanted and unapproved applications with real-time, network-wide visibility and control - for maximum security with minimal effort.

The problem of unwanted software

Unwanted software represents a root cause of a wide variety of IT problems that involve not just time, but money. For example, Microsoft estimates that spyware causes one third of system crashesand according to the Business Software Alliance, unlicensed software can result in settlements in excess of $100,000.

Unwanted software includes worms, viruses, spyware, vulnerable applications, unlicensed software, and unsanctioned applications, and it can arrive on corporate networks in many ways. The scope of the problem ranges from mobile users connecting to infected networks to end users unknowingly infesting their office desktops with spyware. As well, end users can knowingly download non-sanctioned applications such as peer-to-peer file-sharing, instant messaging, mp3 applications, and others.

SANS has reported that the number of vulnerabilities in 2005 is going up, not down: "Despite increasing public and corporate awareness about cybersecurity, the number of computer vulnerabilities in the second quarter of 2005 increased 10.8 per cent compared with the first quarter, according to a new survey from the SANS Institute, which develops data and research on information security. In all, SANS discovered 422 new vulnerabilities, up from 381 in the first quarter."

To complicate matters further, spyware producers continue to make the legal case that their software is neither malicious nor illegal. While unwanted software encompasses a variety of applications that have different implications and characteristics, today's solutions typically focus on narrow aspects of the problem. Thus, different tools have evolved to solve a subset of the problem. For example, most current security products attempt to detect only malicious applications of certain types and new malicious software is discovered each day. In fact, Sophos recently identified 1,233 new viruses in September 2005 alone. Unfortunately, this approach has caused a proliferation of agents on systems that increase complexity and administrative effort.

High performance access to file storage

Next page: Today's solutions

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts
Bloke behind the cockup says not enough people are helping crucial crypto project
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
Heartbleed exploit, inoculation, both released
File under 'this is going to hurt you more than it hurts me'
Experian subsidiary faces MEGA-PROBE for 'selling consumer data to fraudster'
US attorneys general roll up sleeves, snap on gloves
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.