Symantec Jumps Gun Claiming Antivirus is Dead

Posted on May 14, 2014 by .

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It is no question that the number of PC sales has taken a dip while consumers seek out other devices such as smartphones, tablets and even convertible tablets that convert into laptops. In knowing this, it is really no surprise that Symantec has claimed that Antivirus is dead in the realm of desktop computing.

Symantec’s vice president Brian Dye said to the WallStreet journal that antivirus “is dead.” As Symantec’s revenue still accounts for about 40% from the Antivirus world, this claim raised a lot of eyebrows, and rightfully so. Dye told the WSJ that the company doesn’t consider AV to be “a moneymaker in any way.”

As a support to Symantec’s claim, Bogdan Dumitru, Chief Technology Officer at Bitdefender said, “Relying solely on antivirus is a dead end-and it has been for at least 8 years now.” Those are mighty strong words considering, as a refute, PCMag’s securitywatch blog says, “But that’s like saying that aspirin is dead because it’s not the cure for cancer, AIDS, and all of humanity’s other illnesses.”

It is possible that the WSJ article was more of a “what’s old is new again” behind the scenes view. On the other hand, WSJ could completely be leading every on about the fear of AV being dead as claimed by Symantec, who was thought to be one of the leaders of the AV solutions world.

Security analyst and SecurityWatch contributor Fahmida Rashid called Dye’s comments “an anthill made into a molehill.” In fact, she said that the statement is well in line with what Symantec has already been doing. “Symantec hasn’t said ‘install Norton and you are set for life’ in years, so it’s not backtracking to say that we need other types of security. We need behavioral analysis, we need real-time execution in the sandbox, we need layered analysis, and so on.”

The fear that comes out of Symantec’s claim could be a misleading situation where computer users think that they simply do not need Antivirus or Antimalware software, which is just a bad thought altogether. Computer users will thrive off of Symantec’s claim and think that they are invincible in a world and time where identity theft and malware is running rampart. Symantec could be shooting themselves in the foot and at the same time consumers are being misled. That is just a fact of the matter, AV is not dead and thankfully many companies that product trusted AV solutions realize this and do not drink the Symantec cool aide.

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