Remote Virus Cure on Offer

AUCKLAND (08/21/2000) - Wellington, New Zealand-based security specialist Sytec Resources Ltd. will shortly begin selling an outsourced antivirus service.

EDoctor, which will be incorporated in the company's "Sytec secure" suite, is being tested by two organizations, says Sytec managing director Grant Smith.

"One's a large government department that's particularly sensitive to publicity of any sort," Smith says. The other pilot user, a private sector organization, wasn't willing to be named either.

EDoctor is based on antivirus software from Trend Micro. It uses the U.S. company's InterScan suite on the customer's Internet gateway, managed remotely by Sytec.

"The service is a centralized management point linked to the client and then through to Trend Micro's labs," Smith says. Trend Micro identifies and provides signature updates for any viruses intercepted by InterScan.

Sytec signed an eDoctor reseller agreement with the anti-virus software maker last week. Trend Micro's California-based "public education director", David Perry, gave presentations in Auckland and Wellington while in the country for the signing.

Perry, who worked for rival antivirus companies Norton, McAfee and Cybermedia before joining Trend Micro, says the main issue of virus protection is not discovering new threats, but ensuring the basics are in place to stop obvious attacks.

"Detection of new viruses is 1 percent of the problem," Perry says. "The main problems are end users turning off their virus protection and failing to update virus scanners."

With 80 percent of viruses propagated via the Internet, he says it makes sense to intercept them at the gateway. Aside from development of services such as Sytec's, Perry says there's a move toward ISPs offering antivirus protection.

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