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Anti-virus fallacies

Антивирусная неправда

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Speak no words, say no lies

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Friday, July 15, 2016

One company has manufactured a tablet that, according to its developers, can't be infected by viruses.

"If the device is running in read-only mode, nothing can be written to it, and even if a virus gets into the memory, it can’t be recorded to the device", stated Konstantin Kanovsky, the creator of this technology. According to him, because hackers can’t affect the device’s hardware remotely, the device can’t possibly become infected.

Using a switch on the tablet's casing, users can toggle between the two modes of operation, he noted.

As reflected in this news release, the company is claiming that their device is protected from viruses. And they are telling the truth.

A virus is a piece of malicious code that infects files. In order to infect whatever they are targeting, viruses must be able to access that target, and if access is impossible, no infection can occur.

However, viruses are only one type of malware.

Instead of using viruses, criminals can opt for an exploit that will alter the behaviour of a running process. Some malicious programs are completely written in JavaScript; others use VBA — there exist many ways to execute malicious code without writing it to a disk!

Yes, the compromised process will only run until the device is restarted (by the way, when was the last time you restarted your tablet?) or until it is unloaded from the memory, but that may be enough time for hackers to steal your confidential information, request a money transfer in your name, etc.

Hackers are out to make a profit, and infecting a device is only one way for them to achieve their goals.

The claim made in the news release about hackers being unable to affect the device’s hardware remotely is also a dubious one. No one will ever be able to eradicate social engineering techniques; they are always an option for criminals. And, we’ve all read many times about how incredibly resourceful users can be when they are determined to open infected emails. So switching to a protected mode doesn't make a device attacker-proof.

#virus #tablet

The Anti-virus Times recommends

The ability to play with words is truly an invaluable gift. But, facts are facts!

And that’s a good thing, especially if they protect you by preventing viruses from writing their code to a disk on your device. That’s enough isn’t it? :)


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