It is another sad day for the Microsoft OneCare Antivirus program as news begins to trickle in of it placing 14th out of the 17 programs that were tested. This time around AV-Comparitives was the site doing the tests where their focus was more on heuristics.
They used a type of testing called Retrospective which is just about the best type of testing available for ranking antivirus software. It puts the heuristic engine to the test by using an old version of the antivirus software’s database against some of the most recent viruses. For example, I would use an antivirus application that was last updated May 15th, but I would only scan for viruses that were created after May 15th so that the software knows nothing about the existence of the viruses.
AV-Comparitives broke the results up into a few categories based upon how well they did in the tests. The more viruses that it caught, without falsely identifying a file (referred to as a false positive), the higher the category it received.
A summary of the rankings are below, with the best being at the top and the worst being at the bottom. Over 20,000 viruses were tested, and the percentage that each correctly caught are in the parenthesis.
- NOD32 (68%)
- Not Classified
These results are a little different than what we previously saw when the applications were tested against known viruses, especially since Kaspersky was on top before. I definitely like these results better since they are using real-life viruses that are not known to the antivirus application, therefore giving it a true test.
I expected NOD32 to come out on top because of its advanced heuristic scanning capabilities. It correctly identified 14,038 viruses (out of 20,522), and just 2 were false positives (identified as a virus, but not really one). In my eyes that is astounding, because it is an antivirus program that does its job well without falsely making you think that your computer has a virus on it.
I’m still sticking with Avast! which also appears to have done well on the test. It is a free anti-virus application and is one that performs decent on both the heuristic testing and the "known viruses" testing. The thought of purchasing a NOD32 license has never looked so appetizing though.
Source: Computer World
Thanks to the CoryC for the tip!