Antivirus evaluation puts Kaspersky and Symantec on top

Dennis Technology Labs released the results of its latest round of antivirus tests seeking to determine the effectiveness of several commercial anti-malware products, with Kaspersky and Symantec coming out on top.

Dennis Technology Labs ran three basic sets of A/V tests -- one each for enterprise, small business and consumer home office -- looking at the relative strength of several different types of products to protect against threats and block malicious sites. Here's a quick rundown of the results for each of the three tests.

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Enterprise Anti-Virus Protection

The products tested included Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Windows; McAfee VirusScan, HIPS and SiteAdvisor; Microsoft System Center Endpoint Protection; Symantec Endpoint Protection; Trend Micro OfficeScan and Intrusion Defense Firewall. Winner: Symantec Endpoint Protection, scoring maximum points in the test. Kaspersky came in second.

Small Business Anti-Virus Protection

Products tested included Kaspersky Small Office Security; McAfee Security-as-a-Service; Sophos Anti-Virus Business; Symantec.Cloud; Trend Micro Worry-Free Business Security Services. Winner: Kaspersky Small Office Security, though the Dennis Technology Labs report notes "most of the competing products did very well. With the exception of McAfee Security-as-a-Service, they all protected the system 98% of cases or more."

Home Anti-Virus Protection

The products tested included AVG Internet Security 2012; BitDefender Internet Security 2013; ESET Smart Security 5; Kaspersky Internet Security 2012; McAfee Internet Security 2012; Microsoft Security Essentials; Norton Internet Security 2012; Trend Micro Internet Security 2012. Winners: The "most accurate programs," according to the report, were Kaspersky Internet Security 2012 and Symantec Norton Internet Security 2012. BitDefender and ESET's products also did well. The report points out, "nearly every product was compromised at least once. The most effective were compromised just once or not at all, while the least effective (Microsoft Security Essentials) were compromised by 15% of the threats."

Dennis Technology Labs notes that its tests for accuracy, which rely on a scoring system of points, also considers how well products handle both threats and non-malicious software, gauging effectiveness in how well they distinguish threats and legitimate software, not confusing it with attack code.

Ellen Messmer is senior editor at Network World, an IDG publication and website, where she covers news and technology trends related to information security. Twitter: @MessmerE. Email:

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Copyright © 2012 IDG Communications, Inc.

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