Month after month, our Real-World Protection Tests show an increase in ransomware prevalence. For people following the security industry, this is no surprise, since many security vendors (e.g. Adaware and Avast) have been predicting this.
Proactive protection against the WannaCry ransomware (not the exploit)
The WannaCry ransomware has been a major news story over the last few days. It has infected hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide (mostly in Russia), including some well-known companies and institutions. All the programs in our public Main Test Series now detect the WannaCry malware samples by means of signatures, but we decided to find out which of these programs would have blocked the malware sample (not the exploit) proactively, i.e. before the the outbreak started and the malware samples became known.
Introducing AV-Comparatives’ Malware Protection Test
The Malware Protection Test is an enhancement of the File Detection Test which we performed in previous years. It assesses a security program’s ability to protect a system against infection by malicious files; what is unique about this test is that in addition to checking detection in scans, it additionally assesses each program’s last line of defence. Any samples that have not been detected e.g. on-access are executed on the test system, with Internet/cloud access available, to allow features such as behavioural protection to come into play.
Sample quality for the Malware Protection Test
The test set for Malware Protection Test consisted of about 38,000 samples. As we only use samples that have been analysed by our own in-house automated sandboxes, the quality of our sets is very high. Unlike some other testers, we only use malware in our tests, and do not include PUAs or other controversial software. What is malicious and what is “potentially unwanted” is sometimes debatable. We welcome feedback from vendors; however, the decision as to whether something can or cannot be classified as malware is ultimately up to us, even if our decisions may sometimes be regarded as imperfect.
Certificate authorities issue SSL certificates to fraudsters
In just one month, certificate authorities have issued hundreds of SSL certificates for deceptive domain names used in phishing attacks. SSL certificates lend an additional air of authenticity to phishing sites, causing the victims’ browsers to display a padlock icon to indicate a secure connection.
Safe Harbor agreement ruled invalid by top EU court
The European Union’s highest court has today ruled against the transatlantic Safe Harbor agreement which had allowed companies to transfer European citizens’ personal data to the US. The decision, made by the European Court of Justice (ECJ), will affect thousands of companies which had been transfering a wide range of information under an agreement that allowed them to circumvent Europe’s much stricter privacy rules.
10Y Participation Awards
At VB2015 we handed out the 10-Year Participation Awards to Avast, AVG, Avira, Bitdefender, ESET, F-Secure, Kaspersky Lab and McAfee.
Read more here (PDF).
URL Competition @VB2015
For the second time, we ran an URL competition during the Virus Bulletin conference 2015. We plan to host a URL competition every year.
Conference delegates received a code to register for the competition.
26 Malware Hunters (from 14 different companies) joined the competition and submitted in total 238 URLs during the conference. Most of the submissions were 404, PUA, exploits that did not work on the target system or clean URLs/files. Continue reading…
Anti-malware Vendor Market Share Report by OPSWAT
OPSWAT analyzed the market share of 64 anti-malware vendors for their August 2015 report, and the top three anti-malware vendors in their data are Avast at 16.3% market share, Microsoft at 15.7% [without counting Windows Defender] and Malwarebytes at 14.5%. These numbers reflect only those installations where Real-Time Protection is enabled.