McAfee update chaos sparks user fury

Powered by SC Magazine
 

Enterprises offered hotfix, consumers asked to reinstall.

McAfee customers had internet access severed and were left exposed to malware after the company issued a glitched anti-virus update.

The update affected all Windows McAfee suites and VirusScan products including the latest version of VirusScan Enterprise and McAfee Security Center.

Anti-virus signature updates (DAT 6807, 6808) would disable the anti-virus clients, and in some cases sever internet access.

McAfee overnight issued an enterprise 100Mb Super DAT (Hotfix 793640) and a consumer fix (DAT 6809) for the borked updates which it rated as ‘critical’.

Enterprise customers had to apply the hotfix as a product update through the e-policy orchestrator, while consumers were advised to remove McAfee from affected machines and re-install the product in order for the fix to be applied.

Furious enterprise and business customers posted comments yesterday on the McAfee blog claiming they were left high and dry after thousands of machines within their companies were left exposed by the updates.

“I currently have over 3000 endpoints with this problem - solution ASAP please McAfee,” customer Derosa wrote.

Another customer, Bostjanc, said they had 46 of 152 machines affected. “Soo theoretically if one of those users … gets a virus and spreads out to rest of the 45 computers, what then?"

“Then I'm f***ed as an anti-virus technical support.”

Another user had 70 systems of 2100 affected, including two "high profile" users. 

Meanwhile, some consumers took to McAfee’s Facebook account to vent anger where support officers were assisting with technical support.

The borked update followed one issued by McAfee in April that crashed email services, and another by Microsoft for its anti-virus product that flagged Google as hosting the malicious Blackhole exploit kit.

AusCERT security analyst Jonathan Levine said organisations should test antivirus updates before live deployment.

“Everything should be tested before going live as part of best practice,” Levine said.

But he doubted many organisations would bother with testing.

Some users writing on the SANS Internet Storm Center supported the suggestion, saying the cost of testing may outweigh the resources to fix “the occasional glitch”.

Others had comprehensive testing procedures. One McAfee user ran an 18-hour delayed deployment schedule in their organisation in which an evaluation branch would test DAT files on a group of servers and workstations before releasing it to another branch for staggered deployment the next day.

“This has saved us during the bad DAT times … if there is an issue, we are usually only one or two DAT releases behind but catch up during the day,” they said.

Copyright © SC Magazine, Australia


McAfee update chaos sparks user fury
 
 
 
Top Stories
Soft drinks and SoftLayer: A solution for hard times?
Coca-Cola Amatil's CIO Barry Simpson shares his story of cost-cutting, outsourcing and why his software developers to ride around in delivery trucks.
 
Optus considers breaking net neutrality in Australia
May charge Netflix, OTT providers for premium service.
 
AGL restructure sees CIO depart
Owen Coppage to leave after ten years.
 
 
Sign up to receive iTnews email bulletins
   FOLLOW US...
Latest articles on BIT Latest Articles from BIT
Small business win in a budget with 'fair' savings: Abbott
Apr 17, 2015
Tony Abbott has reaffirmed that the government’s aim is “always to get taxes ...
Xero now includes an inventory function built-in
Mar 26, 2015
Xero has added inventory and other major new features to the latest release of its cloud ...
Apple reveals its new MacBook
Mar 13, 2015
Replacing the MacBook Air as Apple's thinnest laptop, the new MacBook comes packed with features.
Xero has released a new version of its app for the iPad
Mar 6, 2015
iPad-wielding Xero users can now take advantage of a new version of the iOS app for the cloud ...
Microsoft is offering Azure for Disaster Recovery to Australian SMBs
Feb 10, 2015
If you haven't talked to your IT provider about disaster recovery, it might be worth discussing ...
Latest Comments
Polls
Do you support the Government's data retention scheme?

   |   View results
Yes
  11%
 
No
  89%
TOTAL VOTES: 2323

Vote