Symantec fights e-mail worms with Norton AntiVirus 2002

Symantec Corp. announced Monday the release of Norton AntiVirus 2002, the latest upgrade to its flagship security product which adds automatic updating, e-mail scanning and support for Microsoft Corp.'s Windows XP.

Norton AntiVirus 2002 offers incoming and outgoing e-mail scanning, script blocking, automatic virus deletion, intelligent alerts and a new interface, Symantec said. The software scans e-mail -- both as it arrives in an inbox and as it leaves -- to check for viruses contained in e-mail attachments. Attachments have contained some of the most widespread and well-known viruses and worms of recent years, including Anna Kournikova, I Love You, Melissa and others.

The attachments these worms spread by are often Microsoft Visual Basic Script (VBS) files. In addition to scanning e-mails, Norton AntiVirus 2002 offers a script-blocking feature to filter out such potentially troublesome attachments and can even stop e-mails that may contain infected attachments from being sent, Symantec said.

One constant problem with antivirus software is keeping it updated. In an attempt to make keeping up to date easier, Norton AntiVirus 2002 offers automatic updating of virus definitions, a process that normally includes a manual download. The software also provides constant alerts to the user, informing them of their virus protection status, Symantec said.

Norton AntiVirus 2002 is expected to retail at US$49.95 and is available for preorder now. The product will be available worldwide on Aug. 29.

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