Norton Internet (Useless) Security

My uncle came today with his laptop – he said that he suspect it’s infected with some kind of virus.
Took a quick look, and found Norton Internet Security. I instantly got the hunch that this will take some time to take care of.

Indeed… took me about 4 hours to fully clean the laptop. The laptop was in a very bad condition; it was infected with about 130+ viruses. Norton Internet Security however didn’t give a single warning. Everything is okie-dokie, according to it. Totally useless junk.

The Internet connection was hosed too. Looking around, found on asus.com website that this is caused by doing a system restore. Yes, the virus is messing around with XP’s system restore feature, and while doing it managed to cripple the modem too.
So I downloaded the 10 MB modem driver (no small feat here with Indonesian’s puny internet access), uninstall the modem, and reinstall it again.
Voila – working Internet connection.

Back to Norton Internet Security – I’ve decided to call this piece of junk “NOrton internet Useless SEcurity” (NO-USE).
I uninstalled it completely, then installed AVG anti virus and ZoneAlarm firewall. All free, and all works MUCH better than NO-USE. Shame on you, Symantec – and you call yourself a security company ?

A few years ago I got NO-USE for free from my bank (Barclays) when they first introduced their online banking facility. It was a trash back then – it destroyed my Windows installation so thoroughly, I had to do a clean reinstall.
It has managed to do a bit better now, I didn’t have to reinstall this laptop. However, letting viruses slip past its firewall, and then failed to spot 130+ viruses in the laptop ?
It still sucks, big time.

Stay away from it. You’ll thank me for that.

Addendum:
Here’s another reason why it sucks. Unbelievable.

4 thoughts on “Norton Internet (Useless) Security

  1. Strange points detected here :

    1. “The laptop was in a very bad condition; it was infected with about 130+ viruses. Norton Internet Security however didn’t give a single warning. Everything is okie-dokie, according to it.”
    Then how do you manage that the laptop is infected with 130+ viruses if the Norton said OK, nothing?

    2. “while doing it managed to cripple the modem too.” So, the use never had any mean to connect Internet. I bet he never download any update for antivirus also, right? Then any antivirus or IDS software will as good as the latest update it got. No update, do not expect it to run properly.

    3. “AVG anti virus and ZoneAlarm firewall. All free, and all works MUCH better than NO-USE”. OF course, they are newly updated since you downloaded it just now. BTW, is the user having update contract with Symantec, is it legit software or pirated one?

    4. “However, letting viruses slip past its firewall”. Firewall is not designed to handle virus intrusion, dude.

    I am not being paid by Symantec to do this defence, but looking the way you put your reasoning, I am too itchy for not commenting with above lines.
    As an IT professional, you should give a better analysis, do not insult your own intelligence 😀

  2. For Comment #1 :

    Let’s get things straight…

    1. Ever thought that the 130+ viruses found was found on the laptop using AVG…?

    2. The modem was disabled AFTER he (this blog author) ran System Restore. You do know what that means, right?

    3. Well, I had the same Norton Internet Security installed. It’s legit, and updated regularly. It came bundled w/ the purchase of my VAIO. After a few months, I uninstalled it, and installed avast! instead. NIS is like a monolith; it’s heavy, and it’s just there sitting doing nothing.

    4. What is your concept on a ‘virus’? If a worm is also a virus then you should know that there are worms/viruses that propagate through networks. A firewall should, at least, block unknown/supicious incoming/outgoing connection(s).

    Anyway, it might be that the user just clicked ‘Yes’ or ‘Allow’ everytime NIS asked whether to allow or block a connection. *rolls eyes*

  3. #1 –

    1. by installing AVG (http://www.grisoft.com) instead 🙂

    2. according to the user, he connected to the Internet ONCE, together with the vendor (who installed NO-USE). Apparently, this was enough for the virus to get in, and wreak havoc with the laptop.

    3. NO-USE should be able to update itself, IF it’s able to block the viruses. However, it failed to block the viruses, so then the viruses crippled the modem. Thus disabling NO-USE from updating itself.
    About the license – no idea, but he bought it in Singapore, so I assume it’s legit.

    4. There are viruses nowadays who spread around via Internet, directly connecting to Windows’ open ports to spread itself to another victim.
    A good firewall is supposed to be able to block this. But of course, we’re talking about NO-USE here 🙂

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