It's not unheard of for antivirus vendors to mistakenly impair software with their updates. Criminals have become so good at switching up their code that companies like McAfee must now churn out millions of signatures in a cat-and-mouse game to identify malware that is in circulation. That leads to errors.
Still, the fact that McAfee allowed a major Windows component to be misidentified demonstrates "a failure in their quality control process," said Amrit Williams, chief technology officer at systems management software vendor BigFix Inc.
"You're not talking about some obscure file from a random third party; you're talking about a critical Windows file," said Williams, a former director of engineering at McAfee. "The fact that it wasn't found is extremely troubling."
McMillan is a reporter for the IDG News Service.
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