Malware - It's worse than you think (Excerpt from 12Bytes.org)

UPDATE: Since writing this article i have finally dropped Windows and moved to Linux-based operating systems which are inherently more secure in some ways (not all). I humbly suggest you consider doing the same.

Malware - It's worse than you think (Excerpt from 12Bytes.org)

UPDATE: Since writing this article i have finally dropped Windows and moved to Linux-based operating systems which are inherently more secure in some ways (not all). I humbly suggest you consider doing the same.

My view on the subject of anti-malware/security suite software may be quite different than that of most casual computer users. I think that one of the primary keys to securing your system is a lack of stupidity rather than anti-virus software, and that relying on such products for protection is tantamount to relying on guard rails to keep your car on the road.

Fact number one: The primary method vendors of anti-virus software employ to protect against malware is by way of virus signatures, also known as 'definitions'. In order to develop a signature for a piece of malicious code, generally the vendor must be aware of its existence and since black-hat malware authors or those identifying 0-day vulnerabilities often sell their code or findings to major corporations, governments and other black-hats, they are obviously going to try to protect their secret as long as possible. This means that an exploit may exist undetected in the wild for hours, days, weeks or even years.

Fact number two: There are many viruses and software exploits that were never, are not currently, and may never be detected by any widely available, general anti-malware product. In fact, it is rather trivial to write a piece of malware that most popular anti-malware products will happily report as being 'clean'.

Fact number three: No single product can possibly protect your system against all threats, much less malware which is tailored for a specific target. On the other hand it simply is not feasible, or even possible in some cases, to run multiple anti-virus products simultaneously.

Fact number four: Everyone with an internet connection has very likely been infected with malware. If you think you are an exception, then i would posit that you simply never knew your system was/is compromised.

Fact number five: The good ol' days of malware are gone. While it was often humorous to read about or even experience your mouse cursor moving and combine that with the fact that you weren't the one moving it, much of the malware being distributed today is orders of magnitude more sophisticated. Today's malware is often designed to be as stealthy, efficient and resource friendly as possible so that it can remain completely undetected. With many millions of dollars to be earned in the malware market, the stakes are extremely high.

I'm not suggesting you throw your hands up in utter defeat, trash your anti-virus software and commence to having digi-sex without a digi-condom, but i want to make it clear that relying primarily upon anti-virus software to protect you against malware threats is a road laden with land mines, regardless of how many products you use, what they cost, what they scored on the latest Virus Bulletin test, or what bells and whistles the vendor claims it has. If there was just one, affordable anti-virus product that protected against even the majority of the threats, there wouldn't be heaps of malicious hackers getting paid to write malware any longer, yet malware is more prevalent today than ever before and more people are running anti-malware software today than ever before. What does that tell you about the overall effectiveness of the anti-virus industry? And it gets worse.

See full article at https://12bytes.org/articles/tech/malware-its-worse-than-you-think (reposted with permission)