Feeds

Symantec fires off false alarm on WoW update

Here be dra... oh, ignore me

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Updated World of Warcraft denizens are complaining that an anti-virus update published by Symantec over the weekend falsely labelled a component of the game as potentially malign.

Instead of throwing spells or wielding axes, fans of the role-playing game who choose Symantec for their security protection complain that the firms is listing benign scan.dll.new library as an information stealer. Multiple posts on a WoW forum suggest that the problem is far from isolated.

In a statement, Symantec acknowledged the problem and apologised to affected customers.

On May 15, 2010, Symantec issued Rapid Release and Live Update definitions, which erroneously detected a component of the World of Warcraft game as malicious.

As soon as Symantec discovered the misdetection, we immediately began working to correct the problem and on the same day, released updated definitions replacing those that caused the false positive. The updated definitions and the restoration of the scan.dll.new file will remedy any complications Symantec customers experienced as a result of this application-level false positive.

Symantec takes the security and proper functionality of its products very seriously.

We apologize to any customers who were affected by this misdetection and are standing by as necessary to assist customers with this issue as needed.

False positives involving anti-virus have always been a problem with anti-virus products but the frequency of incidents has increased over recent months, as this well researched list from security website Attrition illustrates. Issues with false alerts and security suites are becoming more common despite improvements in system architecture simply because the increased number of malware threats, estimated at 50,000 a day, are forcing suppliers to publish updates far more frequently.

Where the false positive involves applications files, such as the latest Symantec and Warcraft case, temporary inconvenience results. Things get a lot more serious in cases where system files are flagged as potentially malign, a problem that left substantial numbers of corporate PCs running McAfee unusable last month.

Days later a gang of guerilla marketeers turned up at the Infosec show in London wearing hoodies brandishing the slogan "You were only supposed to blow up the bloody viruses" in an Italian Job-themed dig at the security giant over the incident. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
YouTube, Amazon and Yahoo! caught in malvertising mess
Cisco says 'Kyle and Stan' attack is spreading through compromised ad networks
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
Microsoft to patch ASP.NET mess even if you don't
We know what's good for you, because we made the mess says Redmond
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.