In a “fake Interview” Symantec’s Stefan Wesche (original article) shot against free antivirus solutions like Aviras AntiVir Personal – FREE Antivirus. Symantec claims that a functionally reduced free version doesn’t offer enough protection, especially compared to products where you have to spend plenty of bucks for. We see this different, of course. In our oppinion, Avira AntiVir Personal – FREE Antivirus is a second protection layer around companies: Malware doesn’t make its way into the company network e.g. on USB-Sticks, Digicams or MP3-Players anymore.
In the interview Wesche states that users need to be protected by a world wide network of researchers and specialists as well as plenty of sensors (like honeypots) that monitor the moves of the crime scene on the internet – just like Avira has. He approves that a free antivirus solution offers a basic protection. We state nothing more and nothing less. Of course for special features and more comfort users need to pay, but Avira helps making the internet a safer place by preventing over 50 million PCs of users of Avira AntiVir Personal from getting infected by and with malware out there.
Symantec doesn’t offer anything like this, and of course also not for free. They try to discredit our honest efforts, and to push people into buying their products.
If you look at all of the recent tests of major PC magazines you’ll find that Aviras detection performance is some significant percent points better than that of other companies products (see for example the signature-based detection of millions of samples of the recent PC Welt-Test); Also we’re always very close to 100 percent, usually over 99 percent. Our reaction time upon new threats is also great. Avira has no noticeable performance impact while offering such good detection rates. Just ask your friends out there which use Symantec about their computer performance.
This publicity stunt from Symantec wasn’t their best idea. Nearly everyone saw through that.