Norton Users Worried By PIFTS.exe, Stonewalling By Symantec

Bob Hubbard

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Norton Users Worried By PIFTS.exe, Stonewalling By Symantec on Tuesday March 10, @09:41AM

Posted by timothy on Tuesday March 10, @09:41AM
from the and-nobody-saw-me dept.

An anonymous reader writes that "[Monday] evening, on systems with Norton Internet Protection running, users began to see a popup warning about an executable named PIFTS.exe trying to access the internet. The file was shown to be located in a non-existent folder inside the Symantec LiveUpdate folder. There were several posts about this to the Norton customer forums asking for help or information on this mysterious program. The initial thread received several thousand views and several pages of replies in a few short hours before being deleted. Several subsequent posts to the Norton forum were deleted much more quickly. These actions whether actively covering up, or simply not well thought through have spurred people to begin crafting conspiracy theories about the purposes of this PIFTS program. I for one am blocking the program until more information becomes available." The current top link on Google for "PIFTS.exe" links to one of these deleted questions on Norton's support boards, which sounds innocent enough: "I searched this forum but did not see PIFTS.exe. Any idea what this is?"
http://slashdot.org/#


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Bob Hubbard

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Reports indicate this is some form of data miner that checks to see where you've been online and phones it back to Symantic, possibly a law-enforcement demanded root kit. Symantic is taking a hard line on this. Ask about it on their forums, your thread's deleted and your banned. Call them, and they will push for remote access to your system.

More reason to drop them and switch to AVG, Avast or Vipre. IMO
 

tellner

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I ditched Norton years ago as it was the biggest piece of malware on my computer. It hogged resources and made my machine unusably. And when I tried to get rid of it it left little turds all over the system that had to be sniffed out and cleaned up by hand.

Thanks for giving yet another reason to deep six them.
 

Cryozombie

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More reason to drop them and switch to AVG, Avast or Vipre. IMO

Ive been running AVG, and wacthing my firewall logs and seen all kinds of crazy traffic going out that I couldnt account for. I scanned and updated and scanned a dozen times, found nothing... grabbed my roommates Symantec, and it found 4 viruses. I know where I got em too.

I'd like to go back to Panda, but I cant afford it right now. Panda Titanium was a nice AV program, when I had it... now, I just formatted and reinstalled windows on my home PC, and need to buy somthing, I can't go with AVG and feel safe. I did add some plugins to help protect my PC into firefox... stuff that blocks code from running and whatnot.. but I sacrifice some functionality.
 
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Bob Hubbard

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Try Avast. I've heard it's good but haven't used it myself. I switched to VIPRE, and to me, it's worth the cash.
 

Dao

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I ditched Norton years ago as it was the biggest piece of malware on my computer. It hogged resources and made my machine unusably. And when I tried to get rid of it it left little turds all over the system that had to be sniffed out and cleaned up by hand.
I agree, Norton used to be a real pain to unistall also. Now they have a small utility to get rid of the crap. Avast is useless it misses many virsues. Paid versions are much better. Nod32 and Kaspersky is highly recommended. Better yet use linux you'll have lesson worries.
 

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From Computer World, Bad Symantec Update Leads to Trouble


March 10, 2009 (IDG News Service) Symantec says a buggy diagnostic program spurred a rash of Norton antivirus user complaints late Monday and Tuesday morning.

Problems started around 4:30 p.m. Pacific Time on Monday, when Norton Internet Security and Norton Antivirus 2006 and 2007 users started receiving error messages connected to a Symantec software update that tried to download a program called PIFTS.exe. "In a case of human error, the patch was released by Symantec 'unsigned,' which caused the firewall user prompt for this file to access the Internet," wrote Symantec spokesman Dave Cole in a forum post explaining the problem.
 

Shicomm

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Oh dear... the bad thing gone even more wrong...

Their marketing still works like hell and i still refuse to sell it to my customers...

Little talk that i had with one of my suppliers a few weeks ago

...but the margins on the symantec products are far better then the kaspersky boxes that you're selling...

Sure , but at least both me and my customers get a product that actually works and keeps out ALL the crap instead of just the easy stuff.
And it's cheaper then most symantec stuff so you need to get a better sales pitch buddy ;)


As for the free guys starting with A ; last time i checked both Avast and AVG still couldn't get rid of WIMAD.* and GETCODEC.* .
Two very nasty buggers that i have to get rid of at least 5 times a week on my clients machines.
 
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Bob Hubbard

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I see the free options as better than Norton or McAfee.
But I switched to Vipre, and am quite pleased by it.
 

Thesemindz

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About six months ago I was struggling with a major infection so I dl'd Ad-Aware, Spybot, and ATF-Cleaner, all free, and they've worked great for me ever since.

But I also don't spend a lot of time doing ahem...cough..cough.."internet research..."


-Rob
 
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Bob Hubbard

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Arrrrrr. ;)


Same reason why they use IE - it came with the pc. :D
 
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