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New Ad-Aware Offers Behavioral Detection 68

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the and-chastizes-you-accordingly dept.
With the latest release of the popular anti-malware tool Ad-Aware, Lavasoft has added what is being referring to as "Genotype," a heuristic-based behavioral detection engine. In addition to a new (and what appears to be faster) method of detection and elimination, there are a few incremental updates like the simple/advanced toggle and a potentially always-on "gaming mode," which attempts to do real-time filtering while you are playing games, watching videos, or just browsing.
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New Ad-Aware Offers Behavioral Detection

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  • Warning (Score:5, Funny)

    by Romancer (19668) <romancer@de3.141 ... oor.com minus pi> on Monday October 12, 2009 @04:51PM (#29724117) Journal

    Warning, The page you are about to view contains P0rN and a small malware virus, would you like to continue?

    Options:
    Yes give me the Virus
    No Block the P0rN.

  • /uninstall

    No, I don't have AdAware...
  • I'm sorry (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jurily (900488) <jurily@[ ]il.com ['gma' in gap]> on Monday October 12, 2009 @04:58PM (#29724219)

    Malware writers are smart enough to overcome heuristics-based solutions. Just like spammers.

  • by drunken_boxer777 (985820) on Monday October 12, 2009 @05:04PM (#29724299)

    As a trained biologist, I take exception to the failure to analogize properly. A genotype is the genetic description of an organism. This has nothing to do with a system that learns from experience.

    Those who create software: Please, if you are going to use a word from a different field to name or describe your program, try to pick a word that creates some sort of sensible analogy rather than choosing one that sounds cool and is unused. Otherwise, you risk sounding like an idiot.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by gnick (1211984)

      From Wikipedia: [wikipedia.org]

      Inspired by the biological concept and usefulness of genotypes, computer science employs simulated phenotypes in genetic programming and evolutionary algorithms. Such techniques can help evolve mathematical solutions to certain types of otherwise difficult problems.

      I'm not saying that you're wrong, I'm just saying that once it's on Wikipedia you need to fight it there or give up the ship...

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Genetic programming and evolutionary algorithms are both completely distinct from what they're describing here. In those cases, the metaphor is quite appropriate since we're talking about serially encoding an algorithm, and then letting mutations of the encoded algorithm compete subject to a fitness function. Ad-Aware's "Genoytpe" has nothing to do with genetic programming or evolutionary algorithms, and the analogy makes no sense at all.

    • by Interoperable (1651953) on Monday October 12, 2009 @05:20PM (#29724531)

      As a trained physicist I would like to extend that to include not just software developers but also Sci-Fi writers, politicians, the media, the general public and anyone who incorrectly uses the word "exponentially". In fact, people who use the word exponentially incorrectly are exponentially worse.

      • by zMaile (1421715)
        I think you mean "the number of people using the word 'exponentially' is getting exponentially worse"
      • "Phenomenally" sounds so much better, too. It's a wonder anyone uses "exponentially" anymore.
        • But exponentially sounds, well, a lot more mathematical.

          It's one of my pet hates, along with using "open source" to describe things that don't have source code.

          • by hairyfeet (841228)

            Yeah, talk to a PC repairman about the word "virus". According to my customers a virus is...spyware,adware, malware, viruses, trojans, rootkits, backdoors, anything that makes their computers act 'funny", any slowdown on same, and pretty much any problem that doesn't come with smoke rolling out the back. They also think they can get 1000+ "bugs" on their machine and you should be able to use some "magic" tool that fixes it in a hour, oh and you should only charge them $20 for it as well.

            The word virus has

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by melikamp (631205)

        And as a trained mathematician, I would like to extend it to all the people who use the word "normal" to describe anything but a non-trivial group G whose only nontrivial subgroup is G itself. Normal people don't make stupid mistakes like that.

      • by ffflala (793437)

        As a trained physicist I would like to extend that to include not just software developers but also Sci-Fi writers, politicians, the media, the general public and anyone who incorrectly uses the word "exponentially". In fact, people who use the word exponentially incorrectly are exponentially worse.

        I hope it gives you some measure of hope that whenever I am about to extrapolate in casual conversation, I make it a point to distinguish between geometric and exponential growth.

        If things will apparently increase at a merely linear rate, I try instead to change the subject to something more interesting.

        Since I am not a trained physicist, suggestions for further conversational precision are welcome.

  • by Ka D'Argo (857749) on Monday October 12, 2009 @05:14PM (#29724441) Homepage
    I used to love it back in the day, removed all kinds of spywave, simple gui, updated easy enough, you ran it when you wanted, etc

    These days it keeps half a dozen processes running in the background with more to be opened if you do any kind of scan. I realize having real-time protection is a nice feature, having to go in and auto disable all these is a pain. If you're still getting malware on the go, so to speak, from websites, and aren't using a browser than's got security or at least security add-ons (Firefox + Noscript + ABP + Flashblock) then I could understand the need for it.

    Add in an anti virus software that does the same X number of processes in the background plus Ad-Aware thats way more bogged down software than ever. Ad-Aware used to be simple, clean and sleek, now it's just bloated shovelware (how quickly did they move from Version X to SE, to Version X.1?)

    Stick with Spybot, Malwarebytes, HijackThis and a decent backup like Nod32, Avast or AVG, imho.
    • by gnick (1211984) on Monday October 12, 2009 @05:24PM (#29724589) Homepage

      Stick with Spybot, Malwarebytes, HijackThis and a decent backup like Nod32, Avast or AVG, imho.

      But do any of those have "gaming-mode"? That sounds kind of sexy. When you're out on the web and engaging in especially risky behavior that could earn you an infection, you're in "gaming-mode" - Yeah, right.

      "Mom! Don't you know how to knock??? I could have been in gaming mode!"

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      With all the background processes now, I keep programs like ad-aware uninstalled. Then when I want to perform a scan I install it, run the scan, and uninstall it again.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by antdude (79039)

      SuperAntiSpyware [superantispyware.com] and Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware [malwarebytes.org] (thanks to the folks in http://www.dslreports.com/forum/security,1 [dslreports.com] for suggesting these) also don't hog your system like Windows' services. Run, scan, and clean on-demand. :)

      Don't forget Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool (W2K SP4 has it too) with mrt.exe command.

    • by MojoStan (776183)

      Add in an anti virus software that does the same X number of processes in the background plus Ad-Aware thats way more bogged down software than ever. Ad-Aware used to be simple, clean and sleek, now it's just bloated shovelware (how quickly did they move from Version X to SE, to Version X.1?)

      Stick with Spybot, Malwarebytes, HijackThis and a decent backup like Nod32, Avast or AVG, imho.

      Some good recommendations (I'd add Avira AntiVir Personal [free-av.com] to your list), but I think Microsoft Security Essentials [slashdot.org] (released 2 weeks ago) is now worth considering for free, non-bloated virus/malware protection. The initial reviews [arstechnica.com] seem pretty good.

    • And I run Linux. Period. ^^

    • by smoker2 (750216)
      I agree, but the simple fact is, is it any good now ? You don't HAVE to start it on boot, just run it if you need it. Or is that too much work ? I still have version 1.06r1 on my XP box (which never really goes on the net), and it runs fine. Oh dear, my definitions are 673 days old, yet I still have no problems ...
      Maybe because I use linux to browse the net (and everything else). [meta - is this a troll ?]
  • In other news ... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by maxwell demon (590494) on Monday October 12, 2009 @05:20PM (#29724529) Journal

    The reason for the mysterious death of many computer users in the last time has been found. It turned out they all had an anti-malware program running which tried to detect and eliminate malware through analyzing its behaviour. Apparently the software detected dangerous behaviour from the computer users and therefore decided to eliminate them in order to protect the system.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by arkenian (1560563)
      I can't decide whether I find your post or the patent filing in your sig more amusing.
  • Wile E. Coyote will definitely succeed this time...
  • Like almost all fee-based malware products marketed to home users, Adaware now-a-days is just bloatware crap that seems to cause as many problems as it tries to solve. The performance degradation of its background service is almost worse than what some malware causes. Avoid like the plague.

    I advise all my home user customers to never pay for ANY antivirus/antispyware software. None of it prevents anything anymore and isn't worth spending money on. All it's good for anymore is notifying you after the fact
  • by DRAGONWEEZEL (125809) on Monday October 12, 2009 @06:25PM (#29725379) Homepage

    If you have 1 detection on one software suite, how many do you have on any other suite?

    My gues is N +X where N is the number of suites you try and X is any positive integer >1.

    That's why the solution really is this: http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1388939&cid=29619053 [slashdot.org]

  • What's new? (Score:2, Funny)

    by mhajicek (1582795)
    What's new about heuristics?
  • I used to use Ad-aware Pro way back when the newest version was 6.0 (not sure was the newest one is now). However, I eventually had to get rid of it. I found that it was very ineffective at actually removing active Malware. Basically what would happen is that because the Malware is already loaded into memory (sometimes even when in safe mode), ad-aware could not terminate the processes that would in turn free up the files to be deleted. So it told me adware was present but could do nothing more. In additi

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