CUPERTINO, Calif. - April 2, 2001 - Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC) today announced that more than three million users around the world have turned to its free service,Symantec Security Check, to identify and address vulnerabilities in their PCs and Macintosh systems. Symantec Security Check helps consumers understand Internet threats by analyzing computers for potential security risks from hackers, viruses, and privacy threats and recommends ways to secure those risks. As evidenced by the overwhelming popularity of Symantec Security Check, the free service is rapidly gaining global recognition as an effective tool for enabling consumers to stay a step ahead of the potential security risks associated with Internet computing.
"We are pleased that millions of users across the globe are utilizing our comprehensive service to reduce the risks associated with Internet computing today," said Steve Cullen, senior vice president of Symantec's Consumer Products Division. "By offering Symantec Security Check free to every PC and Macintosh user, Symantec is clearly demonstrating its solid commitment to making online safety a reality."
To access Symantec Security Check, users simply go to www.symantec.com/securitycheck; links to the service are also available in various trade publications throughout the world. After running the scan, users can view results immediately. They can then print a detailed report of the results and/or compare their results with those of other users. Symantec Security Check runs a variety of tests, including a network vulnerability scan and a NetBIOS availability scan to assess hacker vulnerability; an anti-virus software check, anti-virus definition check, and active Trojan application scan to assess virus susceptibility; and a browser information check that provides instructions, if necessary, on how to safeguard privacy. For each test, Symantec Security Check provides a detailed and concise description as well as comprehensive scan results and a recommended solution.
"This is an extraordinary service," said Joe Bourne, an engineer for a leading network hardware manufacturer. "I ran Symantec Security Check [from my home PC]. Two minutes later, I had a detailed report on the vulnerabilities of my system. I thought I had locked my machine pretty well, but Symantec Security Check found seven security holes. What really impressed me was that they didn't just suggest that I buy more products to address those problems. Instead, Symantec provided detailed instructions for configuring my machine to close the holesÑwithout buying a single thing. The information is reliable, the service is fast, and, incredibly, it's all free."
After using Symantec Security Check, users have the option to permit the web site to include their results with those of other users. According to the site, which maintains a running log of results as they are submitted, privacy is the most common vulnerability that users face today. Eighty-one percent of the users who submitted results were found to be at risk of exposing their browsing history and releasing this information to web servers. Forty-six percent of users were found to be susceptible to viruses because they lacked anti-virus software or used outdated anti-virus software. Network vulnerability scan results indicated that 37 percent of users had one or more ports visible to others on the Internet, thereby enabling malicious hackers to target their computers. In addition, 35 percent of users were exposing information to Internet hackers through their NetBIOS ports. To address these and other concerns, Symantec Security Check provides straightforward, effective instructions.
Symantec, a world leader in Internet security technology, provides a broad range of content and network security solutions to individuals and enterprises. The company is a leading provider of virus protection, vulnerability assessment, intrusion prevention, Internet content and e-mail filtering, remote management technologies and security services to enterprises around the world. Symantec's Norton brand of consumer security products leads the market in worldwide retail sales and industry awards. Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., Symantec has worldwide operations in 36 countries. For more information, please visit our Web site at www.symantec.com.
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENT: This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements regarding future technology and products, that involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to differ materially from results expressed or implied by this press release. Such risk factors include, among others: the risk that the Symantec and AXENT businesses will not be integrated successfully; the costs related to the merger; the difficulty of developing and marketing products that compete effectively with others, new security threats, and other economic, business, competitive and/or regulatory factors affecting Symantec's business generally. Actual results may differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements in this press release. Additional information concerning these and other risk factors is contained in the Risk Factors sections of the Company's previously filed Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended March 30, 2000.