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Dodgy McAfee update slaps viral warning on Spotify

Was someone listening to Phil Collins again?

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Security software from McAfee wrongly identified the Spotify application as a virus, following a misfiring update published on Thursday.

McAfee's nannyware repeatedly deleted the online music application, which it wrongly identified as IRCbot-Gen-Z, once the update was applied. Some users reported that they were able to get around the false positive by restoring the file in McAfee's security centre window.

The majority were unable to use this tactic - which generally speaking is a very bad idea anyway - leaving them unable to use Spotify, according to reports on Spotify's user forum and elsewhere.

In a statement, McAfee said it was investigating the reported problems, promising a fix with an updated signature definition file later on Friday.

McAfee has been made aware that some users are experiencing an issue with Spotify. A fix will be provided in today's regular signature file update. McAfee would like to apologise to any customers affected by this issue and reassure them that this is being addressed as a matter of urgency.

The incident is the latest example of anti-virus definition file updates playing Chicken Little with legitimate software application files. At least in this case key system files were not involved and the false alarm merely created confusion and a lack of access to top tunes, instead of unusable systems. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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