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Updating virus software ‘crucial’

CYBER villains are writing virus code faster than vendors can update their signature or DAT file, says Wave IT managing director Rob McDowell.

Mr McDowell said many businesses thought they had covered their data safety requirements by installing new anti-virus software every couple of months or even every year.

“This is just not good enough if you want to keep a step ahead of new virus outbreaks,” he said.

“When an outbreak hits – take for example when the Melissa and I Love You viruses were unleashed – you must update your anti-virus software immediately. As when a new strain of flu hits the human body, last year’s immunisation will not work … it’s simply out of date.”

Mr McDowell said anti-virus software developers such as McAfee and Norton updated their signature and DAT files continuously. Licensed users can log on to the web site and download any virus definition updates.

“It’s not something you have to pay extra for … it’s something you can do yourself,” he said.

“At Wave IT, we update our anti-virus program on a regular basis but most importantly, we equip people with the knowledge to take control of these matters themselves, rather than forever relying on IT companies to bail them out when it’s too late.

“It’s easier to manage risk than manage disaster.”

Mr McDowell said Wave IT was an independent service for small-to-medium enterprises, playing the role of middleman between the business and IT salesmen.

“While large companies usually have substantial IT budgets to deploy email content checking software, multiple virus scanning devices, security firewalls and secure routers to defend their data, SMEs usually struggle to understand and implement this sort of technology,” he said.

“We’re non-affiliated so our clients know they can trust us and get good, impartial advice.

“They have a great deal to lose and feel the effects more significantly than large business, hence our decision to target that market with consultation and, crucially, education.

“There are numerous ways to combat data threats with a little assistance and understanding of how to update and secure environments.”

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