Accuracy of AV scanners

Martin.Hepworth martinh at
Mon Oct 13 09:05:16 IST 2008


As most virus scanners are signature based there's a time lag from the virus/malware appearing and the virus scanner on you machine finding it. (which is pretty obvious and you that).

I leave the default checks of executable blocks etc which saves me enough times to keep it and release valid executables when I need to.

Martin Hepworth
Snr Systems Administrator
Solid State Logic
Tel: +44 (0)1865 842300

> -----Original Message-----
> From: mailscanner-bounces at
> [mailto:mailscanner-bounces at] On Behalf
> Of Hugo van der Kooij
> Sent: 12 October 2008 22:45
> To: MailScanner discussion
> Subject: Accuracy of AV scanners
> Hash: SHA1
> Hi,
> How many rely just on the AV scanner to stop malware in email?
> I collected some older stuff and just let it parse through
> some scanners again. These originated from the first half of
> 2007. I have run several scanners over them untill september
> or october 2007 and then parked them away for later
> investigation. (And I mean I propably ran most scanners a
> dozen time or more and all of them being up-to-date up to the
> moment I ran the scanners.)
> Now I forgot about them untill I ran into them this weekend.
> So I decided to feed them to the various AV engines again.
> And I get quite a few hits now from the AV scanners that
> seemed to miss out on them last year.
> If you run some RBL's on he MTA or later and use that to move
> the garbage out of the mailbin and also use some other tests
> I guess you will not see much pass your MailScanner setup.
> But AV canners alone will surely not cathch them all.
> I can give some more numbers once I have completed the rerun.
> But given the amount of files it might take a few more days
> before I have them.
> Hugo.
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