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February 12, 2006

Microsoft’s Windows Defender deletes Norton AntiVirus

Posted by David Hunter at 9:36 AM ET.

Ouch! Brian Krebs at the Washington Post reports that the latest update to Microsoft Windows AntiSpyware (soon to be named Windows Defender) is throwing false positives for one of the files in Symantec’s Norton AntiVirus. Users who follow the Defender prompt to delete what they are told is the PWS.Bancos.A Trojan horse program, end up disabling NAV and have a messy task ahead setting things straight.

Microsoft said it is shipping updates that fix this problem, but judging from the growing number of other threads on this in that forum, this is shaping up to be a pretty big issue for companies that have deployed Microsoft’s free anti-spyware product inside their networks. It’s a good idea to keep in mind that Microsoft’s Anti-Spyware product is in beta mode: The company’s product page explicitly says that Microsoft Anti-Spyware should not be deployed in production systems. I’m not apologizing for Redmond in any way; it just seems like too many people ignore warnings about beta products.

True enough, although false positives aren’t exactly unknown on finished products either.



Filed under Coopetition, Defender, Symantec, Technologies

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4 Responses to “Microsoft’s Windows Defender deletes Norton AntiVirus”

  1. Cool Tech Reviews » Windows Defender disables Norton Antivirus Says:

    [...] There are more laughs than one in the news that Microsoft Defender mistakenly classifies Norton AntiVirus as “malware” and offers to let the user delete it. Brian Chin at the Seattle PI: Microsoft yay! Norton nay! [...]

  2. Microsoft News Tracker » Windows Defender Beta 2 now available Says:

    [...] Finally, the problem with Beta 1 disabling Norton Antivirus was also fixed with a new signature update. Filed under Security, Technologies, Beta and CTP, Spyware, Defender Listen to this article   [Permalink] [...]

  3. Roman Says:

    Installing Defender caused enormous trouble with Norton Virusscan. Several LU’s and warnings were noticed. I was not able to restore Norton even after a couple of re-installations. The Norton helpdesk in The Netherlands was bullsh.t!! Thanks Microsoft!

  4. Jeppe Says:

    Thanks Roman – I almost installed Defender and I have a enhanced Norton suite of some kind – but I don´t really trust MS so I looked around and came here – I think I´ll go with my gutfeeling and leave security to others than MS

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