Feeds

AVG snaps up behaviour-based threat detection firm

Sana move in uncertain times

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

AVG, the net security firm best known for its free-of-charge anti-virus tool, has bought anti-ID theft software firm Sana Security. Financial terms of the deal, announced Tuesday, were undisclosed.

In a statement, the firms said that Sana’s behavioural threat detection will dovetail with AVG’s signature and heuristic-based technology to offer consumers comprehensive protection against ID theft and other online threats. San's Redwood City, California headquarters also give Czech Republic-based AVG a foothold in the US.

We can but hope the merger of technologies will go more smoothly than happened when AVG plugged LinkScanner, technology it obtained through its acquisition of Exploit Prevention Labs, into its core security software. The incorporation of LinkScanner into AVG version 8.0 last year sparked howls of protests from website administrators. The LinkScanner Search-Shield component scanned every page returned by a search query, using a user agent difficult if not impossible to distinguish from a regular surfer visiting a site using Internet Explorer.

This "traffic-spewing" behaviour threw site visitor statistics, particularly for sites with search engine ranking, while simultaneously increasing bandwidth costs.

AVG responded to criticism by modifying the technology so that it didn't pre-scan every page returned by a search query.

Separately, back in November AVG falsely identified a core Windows components and (days later) Adobe Flash as infected with malware following a succession of dodgy virus definition file updates.

Despite these slip-ups, which hurt its reputation in some quarters, AVG still boasts a user base of 80 million, according to company estimates, a figure that includes consumer users of the free edition of its security software.

New approaches to anti-malware protection, including white-listing of known good application and behaviour-based malware protection, are moving into vogue. AVG hopes to stay well ahead of these trends with the purchase of Sana. Other vendors - most notably Trend Micro, Panda and McAfee - are starting to use cloud computing techniques and the "wisdom of crowds" to deal with the problems created by the increasing rate of malware variant creation. ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
NUDE SNAPS AGENCY: NSA bods love 'showing off your saucy selfies'
Swapping other people's sexts is a fringe benefit, says Snowden
Own a Cisco modem or wireless gateway? It might be owned by someone else, too
Remote code exec in HTTP server hands kit to bad guys
British data cops: We need greater powers and more money
You want data butt kicking, we need bigger boots - ICO
Crooks fling banking Trojan at Japanese smut site fans
Wait - they're doing online banking with an unpatched Windows PC?
NIST told to grow a pair and kick NSA to the curb
Lrn2crypto, oversight panel tells US govt's algorithm bods
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.