eDoctor Is in the House

This week at Networld+InterOp in Atlanta, Trend Micro (http://www.trendmicro.com) announced its new 24×7 eDoctor Global Network Internet virus detection and suppression program. This new product and service will monitor ISPs and provide active intervention once the product detects a virus. Just this year, we've seen the widespread outbreak of three major viruses: Melissa, CIH, and Explore.Zip. Experts estimate that 30,000 viruses will be circulating by year's end. Computer Economics has estimated that computer virus and worm attacks caused about $7.6 billion in damage in the first half of 1999. Viruses attacked half of the damaged systems through email. By comparison, International Data Corporation (IDC) estimates that companies spend $4 billion annually for Internet security, with about $1.2 billion aimed at antivirus efforts. A study by ISCA in 1999 estimated that 88 virus incidents occurred per month for every 1000 computers, up from 32 incidents per month in 1998. When most viruses were largely boot viruses, they were relatively slow to spread and easier to combat. However, more recent macro viruses spread more quickly and are harder to stop. When newer viruses such as Melissa, CIH, and Explore.Zip transmit over the Internet via email, they spread rapidly and exponentially. The idea behind eDoctor is simple: If you can quickly detect and stop an Internet or email virus at central points on the Internet, you can limit the spread of an outbreak. According to Eva Chiang, Trend Micro’s chief technology officer, “The best way to stop a virus is at the entry point.” Trend Micro has created a 150-person eDoctor virus group, with monitoring centers in the US, Taiwan, Japan, Philippines, Germany, and China connected by a worldwide VPN. As the day progresses, the virus group passes control over the systems it's monitoring from one center to the other. Once the group detects a virus, Trend Micro’s Virus Control System (VCS) service can provide an update that will prevent the transmission of particular types of email based on content, attachments, and other parameters. Trend Micro’s software lets you stop a virus without having to shut down the entire mail or messaging system. During recent outbreaks, several major companies, including Boeing and Microsoft, had to shut down their entire mail systems while they searched for and deleted messages with the Explore.Zip virus. By creating a group staffed by virus experts and the means to intervene quickly, Trend Micro lets ISPs, telcos, and other providers pass along this enhanced protection as a value-added service to their customers. Now, at least for one company’s customers, there's a rapid response to the rapid spread of viruses in the Internet age.

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