Feeds

Symantec fires off false alarm on WoW update

Here be dra... oh, ignore me

Build a business case: developing custom apps

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. ®

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think

More from The Register

next story
14 antivirus apps found to have security problems
Vendors just don't care, says researcher, after finding basic boo-boos in security software
'Things' on the Internet-of-things have 25 vulnerabilities apiece
Leaking sprinklers, overheated thermostats and picked locks all online
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Multipath TCP speeds up the internet so much that security breaks
Black Hat research says proposed protocol will bork network probes, flummox firewalls
Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu
Just slapping a patched OpenSSL on a machine ain't going to cut it, we're told
Microsoft's Euro cloud darkens: US FEDS can dig into foreign servers
They're not emails, they're business records, says court
Plug and PREY: Hackers reprogram USB drives to silently infect PCs
BadUSB instructs gadget chips to inject key-presses, redirect net traffic and more
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
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.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?