Symantec Earns Unprecedented 35th Consecutive VB100 Award

Symantec Corporation has earned an unprecedented 35th consecutive VB100 Award from Virus Bulletin. Symantec was one of only two vendors to receive a perfect detection score for all the December 2007 tests, while many security companies outright failed them. The core technology that was tested powers both Symantec’s Norton product line for consumers and enterprise products. Symantec has earned 41 VB100 Awards since 1998. To earn the VB100 designation, a product must detect—both on demand and on access, and in its default settings—all malware known to be “in the wild” at the time of the review and generate no false positives when scanning a set of clean files.

Virus Bulletin’s signature-based tests have long been considered the benchmark for gauging the quality of antivirus solutions in detecting a vast range of known viruses. There is a growing need, however, for behavioral-based tests as well. Such tests are imperative in assessing modern behavior-based systems, which detect malicious activity as it occurs, and they offer a more complete evaluation of the various ways an antivirus product can provide protection.

It is gratifying to see the effectiveness of Symantec solutions continue to be acknowledged by well-established organizations such as Virus Bulletin. As security testing methods and technologies evolve and advance, Symantec looks forward to taking part in new opportunities that help ensure that consumers have the most comprehensive information with which to compare security products,” said Kevin Haley, director of product management, Symantec Security Response.

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Haha, I love how you all jump to conclusions and call Symantec (and Norton) Products crappy and jump to the conclusion that Symantec paid off Virus Bulletin. How many of you have actually tried the 2007 or 2008 version of their product?? I'm willing to bet none of you, as you're all still also bitching about System Resources which have been lowered in 2007 and even lower in 2008...and detection is, as the article states, still holding up.

Good Job Symantec!!


Virus Bulletin Magazine is essentially the anti-malware industry's trade journal and their VB100 test is considered one of the most accurate--if not the most accurate--tests in the industry. Over the past nine years they have performed fifty-five (55) VB100 tests and if there were any problems with their methodology I would think they would have since been identified and corrected. One of the reasons Virus Bulletin's VB100 methodology for testing is considered to be high quality is because it is well documented and reproducible. There are many reviews done of anti-malware software where this information is never presented, leaving the reader to guess as to what options the software was configured with, the environment in which it was tested, what malware was used in testing and so forth. Speaking of malware, that brings up another point: VB100 tests are based on WildList reports. The WildList is a list of replicating malware which has been reported by the list members. It does not, however, cover non-replicating malware, which could be things like adware, bots, keyloggers, rootkits, password stealers, spyware, some Trojan horses and so forth. That may--or may not--be an important disctinction, because not every type of threat out there is from replicating code (i.e., a computer program which makes copies of itself which are, in turn, capable of making copies of themselves).

I took a quick look at the December 2007 issue of Virus Bulletin magazine, as well as this update released on December 12th, and actually noticed that there were three anti-malware programs which received "perfect" detection scores, not two as stated in today's press release. While that looks a little sloppy, it is understandable: Symantec probably started working on the press release before December 12th and did not have a chance to re-check their figures before publishing it on December 20th. What was interesting to me, though, was that Symantec chose to emphasize the fact that they won their thirty-fifth consecutive VB100 award, instead of forty-one VB100 awards in total. There are other products which have won almost as many, such as Kaspersky (40) and Sophos (39) and products which have won more, but perhaps there are not any other products which have won as many consecutively, which is what makes it interesting. In my opinion this is really a brilliant piece of marketing by Symantec, because with the interjection of a single adverb they have changed how the count of VB100 awards is interpreted, and that is quite clever of them.


Aryeh Goretsky

Funny considering...

The typical recognition rates of their heuristics fell from approximately 40-50 per cent in the last test - at the beginning of 2007 - to a pitiful 20-30 per cent. Only NOD32, with 68 per cent, still delivered a good result, while BitDefender, with 41%, could be called satisfactory.

35, rofl. eset says NOD32 / "Smart Security" has 46 VB100 total awards from Virus Bulletin and states it as more than any other security solution.

I haven't used it in years. I stopped right about the time they did that "update" that broke all the computers in my office by not letting them open word or excel documents. When an antivirus program can cause that kind of a headache, you have to wonder just what their coders are actually doing. Funny this is the only award they've won. But if you look at the criteria they had to pass, it's not hard. Why not test an AV Vendor on it's ability to detect unknown viruses?

If it is not so hard to pass, why did only two software packages pass the test? As for your second point, I don't think any program will catch a virus not in its virus database.

Xilo said,
Symantec Corporate is actually a nice anti virus software. It's my personal favorite.

Yep i use Symantec Corporate Edition too for the last 10-12yrs on loads of machines and it catches everything.....

I think one of the old version9 ones failed me once but that was because the user disabled it (so that doesn't count IMO)

Norton is for noobs

SAV Corp rocks :P

Wow. Apparently the VB100 Award is equivalent to the Grammy awards in the music industry.

If Homer Simpson can win a Grammy award it's no wonder Symantec won the VB100.

Congratulations for destroying Norton's reputation Symantec. I sure hope you are proud of yourself!

That's great that it catches every single virus ever created but at what cost to system performance?

Norton (consumer products) are the equivalent of doing a full body cavity search on every person that enters your home.

Enrickey said,
Actually, Norton 360 is pretty good. It has a smaller memory footprint than Kaspersky or Nod32.

What's the point of using less resourses if it also detects less viruses?!?!?!?!?


The Walker said,

What's the point of using less resourses if it also detects less viruses?!?!?!?!?


This news article is claiming that Norton is detecting, if anything, more virii, not fewer.

Shining Arcanine said,

This news article is claiming that Norton is detecting, if anything, more virii, not fewer.

Viruses, not Virii.
Sorry, hate to be a grammar nazi here, but that particular misconception of the plural of "virus" really bugs me.