Feeds

Malwarebytes declares Windows 'malicious', nukes 1,000s of PCs

Biz boss apologies to the entire world

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

A dodgy software update for virus-killer Malwarebytes disabled thousands of PCs before a fix was issued this week.

Malwarebytes' database version v2013.04.15.12 erroneously flagged core Windows system files as malicious, resulting in unstable - and in some cases unbootable - machines. Windows system files were wrongly identified as Trojan-Downloader-ED.

The firm quickly pulled Monday's update and issued instructions on how to nurse crippled machines back to health. Despite its prompt response within minutes of the problem flaring up, thousands were still affected. Both consumer and enterprise users of Malwarebytes' technology were affected.

Marcin Kleczynski, Malwarebytes' chief exec, apologised for the botched update before later promising improvements in its update process.

From now on, anti-malware updates from Malwarebytes will be tested on a virtual server before they are pushed out into the world, we're told, a move that ought to identify at least more obvious problems.

Malwarebytes is best known for its freebie security scanner software but it branched out last September to target enterprises with a grown-up version of its tech.

False positives involving antivirus signature updates are a perennial problem that have affected nearly every vendors at one time or another. The consequent problems are most bothersome when they misidentify Windows operating system files as potentially malign and quarantine them, as in the latest case involving Malwarebytes. ®

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
NEW, SINISTER web tracking tech fingerprints your computer by making it draw
Have you been on YouPorn lately, perhaps? White House website?
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Black Hat anti-Tor talk smashed by lawyers' wrecking ball
Unmasking hidden users is too hot for Carnegie-Mellon
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
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
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
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.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
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.