Antivirus No Longer Offers Meaningful Security Value
By most accounts, legacy AV has existed since 1987. Signature-based scanning of files has been the cornerstone of AV’s ability to detect malicious content ever since. In the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s, signature-based antivirus provided adequate protection for endpoints and servers, given the nature, sophistication and frequency of attacks of that era. However, the effectiveness of this technology has diminished over time as operating systems, networks and applications have evolved. Today, there are simply too many variations of new and unknown threats
for a signature-based approach to identify and block them in a timely fashion.
Legacy AV vendors have been slow to adopt new technologies and continue to rely on outdated methods to bolster the effectiveness of their offerings. Many have begun adding new capabilities, such as machine learning, to their endpoint security products. A deeper look into these additions, however, reveals that many are underdeveloped, disabled by default, or deliver only incremental improvements in malware coverage. Some require multiple products with separate endpoint agents to compensate for the shortcomings of the new additions. In fact, technologies such as digital signatures, virus scanning and heuristic analysis remain at the core of “new” endpoint solutions offered by most legacy AV vendors.
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