Support for XP might be ending, but the world is not
Security outfit F-Secure has published its Threat Report for the second half of 2013, which provides a detailed look at the threat landscape as well as trends in malware. It also contains some advice for Windows XP users who aren't planning to upgrade to a newer OS once support ends on April 8, 2014. Whether the decision to stick with XP is based on contractual obligations or other reasons, F-Secure says "all is not lost" for businesses and users who ride it out.
Security vendor F-Secure is ringing in the holiday season with a limited time Internet Security PC Lifetime Edition offer. Up through January 31, 2014, you can snag an F-Secure Internet Security PC Lifetime Edition license for $80, which remains valid for the life of your PC or 7 years, whichever comes first. Even better, F-Secure has an exclusive offer for Maximum PC readers -- two licenses for the price of one!
A free online scanner just got faster and lighter.
Security outfit F-Secure says it completely rebuilt its Online Scanner tool to run faster, lighter, and more capable than before. One of the biggest additions to the revamped scanner is that it now hunts for rootkits, those nasty bits of code that burrow deep down and sometimes boot before the operating sytem, making them extremely difficult to detect and remove. F-Secure also focused on downsizing the tool's footprint, which now checks in at 5MB.
Mobile malware on the Android platform is on the rise.
Remember Symbian? Few people actually care about the mobile platform these days, and that's evidenced by the reduction of mobile malware aimed at Symbian, which dropped from 29 percent in 2011 to 19 percent in 2012, according F-Secure's latest Mobile Threat Report (PDF). Android, on the other hand, is more popular than it's ever been, and as a result, 79 percent of all mobile malware is targeted at Google's open source OS.
Malware writers figured out long ago that infection rates go up when you target current trends. Potential victims who aren't particularly computer savvy tend to let their guard down when an email arrives related to current events, and with the London Olympics less than two months away, malware writers are getting a head start by sending out malicious Olympic themed emails.
The Java browser plugin is notorious for being wildly popular among malware authors. The ubiquity of Java is not the only reason for this. Rather, the problem seems to lie more in the fact that a sizable chunk of its installed base consists of outdated versions, something that is often attributed to low awareness among users about Java itself and the threat posed by Java vulnerabilities. But according to F-Secure’s Mikko Hypponen, the only thing users need to know about Java is that they don’t need it. Hit the jump for more.
This the time of year when everyone starts compiling lists of the best and worst holiday gift ideas, what with Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the holiday shopping season all on the horizon. Security firm F-Secure put together its own list, but rather than swing one or the other, the protective folks at F-Secure meshed them all into a single "Top Ten Most 'Dangerous' Holiday Gifts for Cyber Monday 2011."
F-Secure caught lightning in a bottle, poured it into its scan engine, and then built a security suite around it. When we say this scanner’s fast, we mean buckle up, hold on to the seat of your pants, and hope you don’t get whiplash. F-Secure’s scanner sped through our test bed in just three minutes and 18 seconds the first time around, which is nearly twice as fast as the next-quickest AV suite and more nimble than the second, optimized scans of 60 percent of the other apps in this roundup. During a second scan, F-Secure zipped through our files in a mere 45 seconds.