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Lumension Examines How To Close The Antivirus Protection GapLumension Examines How To Close The Antivirus Protection Gap

New whitepaper examines and compares the effectiveness of standalone AV versus newer technologies

Dark Reading Staff

May 16, 2012

4 Min Read

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., May 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- As malware and cyber attacks have become more prevalent and sophisticated, corporate budget constraints have put increased pressure on already limited IT resources. These competing forces have resulted in the adoption of policies that meet bare minimum requirements or involve only singular products, such as Antivirus, selected for their low price points. Lumension®, a global leader in endpoint management and security, today announced the publication of a new whitepaper that examines and compares the effectiveness of standalone AV versus newer technologies, including application whitelisting and a layered approach to endpoint security. The conclusion of the paper is that Antivirus solutions alone are an ineffective and costly security model.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120516/DA07591-INFO)

To conduct this comparison, Lumension worked with an independent malware research organization with expertise in malware attack vectors. Over a seven-day period, more than 2,100 individual samples were collected "in the wild" and directed against configured test systems. The malware test set included trojans, backdoors, PUAs, ransomware, viruses, rootkits and worms - all threat vectors that security professionals are now seeing on a regular basis.

In order to compare AV with more extensive defenses, such as whitelisting, a model of the "Average Corporate Endpoint," ACE, was defined. The ACE was chosen to be representative of a business-oriented end-user comput­er in Operating System, installed applications and "average" IT operational and security practices. A Microsoft® Windows 7 Enterprise (64-bit) machine, part of an Active Directory domain, was chosen as the best representative of an average enterprise desktop endpoint. The ACE test system was then loaded with Microsoft Forefront Endpoint Protec­tion 2010 to represent an average third-party AV solution.

The Microsoft Forefront-protected ACE system was then compared against an ACE system running Lumension® Endpoint Management and Security Suite (L.E.M.S.S.), which incorporates application whitelisting, Lumension® Antivirus, Lumension® Application Control and Lumension® Patch Man­agement. Not only did the L.E.M.S.S.-protected system fare significantly better on every account, the failure of the Microsoft Forefront system to repeatedly detect multiple types of malware was even more drastic than anticipated. The results can be seen in the embedded chart, which shows the number of cumulative malware samples missed. A full overview of the results can be found in the whitepaper, Closing the Antivirus Protection Gap, available for free at http://www.lumension.com/Resources/Free-Content/Closing-the-Antivirus-Protection-Gap.aspx?rpLeadsourceID=L2816.

"For years, we've been reiterating the fact that AV by itself is wholly ineffective and this fact continues to ring more true as malware proliferates and grows in complexity daily, said Paul Zimski, Vice President, Solution Marketing, Lumension. "With this whitepaper, we are going beyond simply stating this fact, we are providing proof points in an effort to further convince security professionals that investing in a solution that goes beyond pure AV is critical to the success of their corporate networks in today's increasingly complex and threatening malware landscape."

The whitepaper also examines the dramatic, detrimental impact malware can have on an organization due to loss of private cus­tomer data, corporate intellectual property and reputation. In addition to these dramatic effects, malware can also lead to the loss of employee productivity and increased help desk costs. Because organizations may not always take such costs into account when working to safeguard themselves against malware, Lumension has also developed a True Cost of Malware Calculator to help organi­zations understand these additional costs. The calculator allows for customization of a large number of parameters, which allows a specific model to be developed. This calculator is available for free at http://www.lumension.com/Resources/Value-Calculators/Cost-of-Malware-Calculator.aspx?rpLeadsourceID=L2816.

Tweet This: Just how much of a #FAIL is #AV on its own? Hint: even worse than you may have thought. New study from @_Lumension http://goo.gl/vEbc4

Supporting Resources:

-- Closing the Antivirus Protection Gap Whitepaper -- True Cost of Malware Calculator -- Optimal Security Blog -- Lumension on Twitter -- Lumension on Facebook About Lumension Security, Inc. Lumension Security, Inc., a global leader in endpoint management and security, develops, integrates and markets security software solutions that help businesses protect their vital information and manage critical risk across network and endpoint assets. Lumension enables more than 5,100 customers worldwide to achieve optimal security and IT success by delivering a proven and award-winning solution portfolio that includes Vulnerability Management, Endpoint Protection, Data Protection, Antivirus and Reporting and Compliance offerings. Lumension is known for providing world-class customer support and services 24x7, 365 days a year. Headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, Lumension has operations worldwide, including Virginia, Texas, Utah, Florida, Ireland, Luxembourg, the United Kingdom, Australia and Singapore. Lumension: IT Secured. Success Optimized.(TM) More information can be found at www.lumension.com

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Dark Reading Staff

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