Microsoft Contests Anti-Virus Tests, Claims Security Essentials Is Much Better

Microsoft’s app has failed to receive AV-Test certification for the second time

AV-Test released a few hours ago the results of a new anti-virus test performed in December, revealing that Microsoft’s Security Essentials and two other security products had failed to receive their certification.

According to these results, Security Essentials detected only 72 percent of 0-day malware, while also missing 9 percent of recent infections. Overall, Microsoft’s security product has received 1.5, 3.5 and 5.5 points for protection, repair, and usability, respectively.

But the Redmond-based technology company claims these tests aren’t entirely accurate and emphasizes that Security Essentials is actually a much better security product.

The software giant performed its very own anti-virus test to determine whether Security Essentials manages to detect all samples of malware.

“When we did our review, we found that our customer-focused processes had already added signatures that protected against 4 percent of the missed samples. These files affected 0.003 percent of our customers,” Joe Blackbird, program manager, Microsoft Malware Protection Center, said in a statement.

“For the remainder of the missed files, we used a retrospective analysis to see if any of our customers encountered these files. We were looking for files that slipped through because of gaps in our telemetry or file collection process. And we found that 2 percent of these files existed across 0.003 percent of our customers,” he continued. “The other 94 percent of the samples don't represent what our customers encounter.”

Microsoft has also revealed a handful of statistics to show that, last month, the company had processed no less than 20 million samples of malware, while it also added protection to block 4 million different malicious files on nearly 3 million computers.

Microsoft Security Essentials is available as a free download and works on Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7. Windows 8 comes with Windows Defender, a full-featured anti-virus product that also comprises anti-spyware protection.

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