Chip Can Stop PC Viruses, But Cost is a Hurdle

Researchers in Japan have developed a microchip that blocks computer viruses before they enter PCs, an advance that could change how security software is used. Chips in routers can stop viruses without slowing down programmes running on computers the way security software does, according to researcher Eiichi Takahashi at the government-funded National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology. But the chips need to be rewritable so they can be updated with online information about new viruses, and that creates a problem, because rewritable chips now can recognise only a few hundred viruses each.

This makes an effective anti-virus chip system prohibitively expensive, while open source software recognises roughly 70,000 viruses, Takahashi said. "To translate the technology into profits, you would need global sales channels to cut prices and make the technology affordable for consumers," Nikko Citigroup analyst Kengo Nagahashi said. The technology poses no threat to security software companies Trend Micro Inc. or Symantec Corp., he said.

News source: CRN / Reuters

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^ very true.

It's effectively not much different from having a hardware firewall and/or AV suite with it.

A 'box' of some description that filters the data before it gets sent to your PC (One in DMZ on in LAN).

Supposed the idea of putting this into a router effectively, is a good thing.

TrendMicro did this a few years ago with there Fated Gatelock X200, which was a Firewall/antivirus unit.

it has limited memory and they no longer sell the units, but IIRC they still offer updates for those who still pay a subsciption to recive firewall and antivirus updates. mine hasnt been updated for a year and still manages to catch the odd infected email that has old viri code attached.

you may find some on ebay for sale if you are intrested in it.

googleGatelock x200 for more info on the device.

such a good idea, and if the router, modem or whatever gets infected (if its even possible) then you just re install windows router or windows modem on it... hahaha

okay what is the point of this thing? A chip that can detect virus but as only the space for a few hundred definition...Why bother, There are filtering box on the market that can do the same thing and more. Okay they don't fit on a chip butwould it not make more sence to just make them afordable to joe sixpack?

Well, if they set up the routers properly, they could spread a bunch of different definitions across all the backbone routers of the web. This would effectively remove the viruses from the internet completely, as more and more get parsed through various different routers. They could also deploy a quick patch to ALL the routers in case a particularly nasty virus comes out, like say red alert. This would significantly slow the spread of the bug. The problem I see though, is that if the viruses don't get to the end users anymore, then the viruses will likely start targeting the routers themselves, possible even getting in from the virus definitions update! If a bunch of backbone routers go down... bad things will happen. Also, it could slow down traffic, parsing through all the data.

Quote - osirisX said @ #2
I'm sure Symantec and McAffee will sue.

yeah i know right!

but i would imagine it would be bypassed sooner or later.