Archive for AVG

Avast Snags AVG In $1.3 Billion Deal

Posted in Commentary with tags , on July 7, 2016 by itnerd

In a blockbuster deal, Netherlands based anti-virus software maker AVG has been acquired by Avast in a huge deal that is worth $25 a share or $1.3 Billion US in total. Here’s why Avast did the deal:

Avast said that it’s acquiring AVG to “gain scale, technological depth, and geographical breadth” and so it can “take advantage of emerging growth opportunities in internet security, as well as organizational efficiencies.”

The combined company will have access to “400 million endpoints” — that is, devices that have some form of Avast or AVG application installed. Almost half of those are mobile, which is key in a world that is increasingly shifting away from the desktop. Access to more devices will serve the joint company a bigger pool of data on malware, meaning it should be better positioned to offer improved security products.

“We are in a rapidly changing industry, and this acquisition gives us the breadth and technological depth to be the security provider of choice for our current and future customers,” said Vincent Steckler, CEO of Avast. “Combining the strengths of two great tech companies, both founded in the Czech Republic and with a common culture and mission, will put us in a great position to take advantage of the new opportunities ahead, such as security for the enormous growth in IoT.”

This deal basically takes two of the biggest players and takes them down to one. But you could see it coming as Microsoft for example is stepping up its game when it comes to endpoint security and anti-virus. Plus sales in this space are at best, flat. Thus consolidation was likely the way to go for both parties. Of course the shareholders of AVG have to approve this deal, but that shouldn’t be a problem given that the boards of both companies have given their approval.

AVG Introduces Smart Photo Cleaner For Android

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 7, 2016 by itnerd

AVG today introduced Smart Photo Cleaner, a new feature within the AVG Cleaner for Android application. Perfect for consumers with a serious photo addiction, but who rarely delete blurry, duplicate or similar images, the new Smart Photo Cleaner helps users regain lost mobile storage by identifying and removing unwanted photos.

Additional updates to the latest version of AVG Cleaner, AVG’s flagship mobile performance app, include a new, one-click dashboard overview that analyzes the device’s status and initiates a one-tap clean-up of hidden files, storage and battery-draining apps.

AVG Cleaner for Android now includes:

  • Smart Photo Cleaner: Automatically identifies duplicate, similar and poor quality photos, so users can remove them from the device and free storage
  • One-Click Dashboard Overview: Provides one-tap analysis of device performance, battery life and storage, helping users easily—and from a single screen—fix, clean and remove top resource hogs, bad photos, unnecessary files
  • Cache Cleaner: Identifies and cleans hidden and unused files to free space
  • History Cleaner: Earmarks browser history and old call logs for deletion
  • App Manager: Flags resource-hungry apps (as detailed in AVG’s latest App Performance & Trends Report) and helps users stop or delete them to free device storage, increase battery life
  • Battery Manager: Helps users optimize battery life by automatically turning off power-sapping features and creating “Battery Profiles,” which adjust battery usage based on location (i.e. at home, at work, in the car)

AVG Cleaner for Android is available now.

AVG Browser Extension For Chrome Exposes Users To Danger

Posted in Commentary with tags on December 30, 2015 by itnerd

The reason why people have anti-virus applications on their computers is so that they are protected from threats. But in the case of an browser extension for the Chrome browser put out by anti-virus maker AVG, it exposes you to danger.

Tavis Ormandy, a Google Project Zero researcher who has been auditing anti-virus software found the extension was riddled with vulnerabilities. The extension in question is Web TuneUp which is installed with AVG’s anti-virus package. It’s job is to stop Chrome users from surfing to websites hosting malware. But according to Ormandy, it exposes your browsing history for any miscreant to see and use in nefarious ways. Plus it exposes you to man-in-the-middle attacks and the possibility of hijacking attacks. By the way, this extension is forced upon you and you have no choice but to install it when you install AVG Anti-Virus.


He was so ticked, he sent this e-mail to AVG:

Hello, I’ve just been looking at your antivirus product, and the first thing I noticed was you force install a Chrome extension called “AVG Web TuneUp” with extension id chfdnecihphmhljaaejmgoiahnihplgn. I can see from our statistics it has nearly 9 million active Chrome users.

Apologies for my harsh tone, but I’m really not thrilled about this trash being installed for Chrome users. The extension is so badly broken that I’m not sure whether I should be reporting it to you as a vulnerability, or asking the extension abuse team to investigate if it’s a PuP.

Ouch. By the way, PuP stands for potentially unwanted program. Which is a nice way of saying that it’s malware. I’m sure that went over well at AVG headquarters. Fortunately AVG has since come up with a fix for this. But I’m guessing that Google aren’t the trusting sort as this extension cannot be force installed anymore. That gives users the option to run this or not.

One has to wonder what AVG was thinking when they came up with this as the bad press clearly shows that they might have needed to keep this browser extension in the over a bit longer.


Several Major AV Products Have A Common Flaw

Posted in Commentary with tags , on December 10, 2015 by itnerd

If you run McAfee VirusScan Enterprise version 8.8, Kaspersky Total Security 2015, and AVG Internet Security 2015, you need to update your software right now. According to enSilo via a a blog post, all three AV apps allocate memory for read, write, and execute (RWX) permissions in a predictable address that an attacker could use to inject code into a target system. On top of that, enSilo has created a free checking utility called AVulnerabilityChecker and stuck it on Github for anyone to use to see if they are affected.

Intel, owner of McAfee, and Kaspersky have now fixed the issue. Ditto for AVG. If you haven’t updated your AV apps lately, you should do so now.

AVG Complies A List Of The Most Notorious Performance Killing Android Apps

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 21, 2015 by itnerd

Although its pictures and videos are gone in an instant, its effect on your smartphone lingers, as Snapchat the image-sharing app has been crowned as the number one smartphone performance killer in the latest AVG Android App Performance Report [Warning: PDF]. Compiled by AVG for more than 200 million monthly active users, the report saw Snapchat dethrone previous top-spot holders, Facebook and Spotify, thanks to its simultaneous use of your device’s camera, Wi-Fi, mobile data and GPS functionality.

Some findings from the report include:

  • Topping the list of hidden, battery-draining services this quarter is the innocuously named “,” which is responsible for delivering periodic Samsung updates to Android devices via Wi-Fi. As with the similarly update-heavy Samsung Security Policy Update (KNOX) and Google Play apps, the service has a massive impact on the battery life of your device
  • Google Chrome emerged as the second-highest storage-consuming app this quarter thanks to its collection of user browsing data over time, joining more obvious apps, such as Spotify and Amazon Kindle
  • A consistent ‘top’ performer in our charts, Facebook has a new contender, this quarter, with its monitoring app, Facebook Pages Manager. The app stores a lot of local content as it tracks page statistics, followers and comments while on the move

AVG has a blog post that speaks to this as well. If you’re an Android user, you might want to give this report and blog post a read.

AVG Adds More Protection & Performance Features & Moves To A Continual Update Model

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 3, 2015 by itnerd

AVG Technologies has announced the availability of its next generation consumer product releases for PC and mobile. AVG’s products and suites will now be auto-updated on a continual basis, so users will always have the latest features and capabilities and will no longer need to worry about keeping their products up to date.  This is AVG’s first step towards Security as a Service.

As well as including AVG’s latest protection and performance products for Windows, Android, iOS and Mac OSX devices, both suites feature AVG’s flagship AVG Zen platform, which makes it easy for users to monitor and manage protection and performance across an unlimited number of their own devices, and those of family members, from a single dashboard on any PC or Android device.

AVG has coordinated these releases with two, industry initiatives: European Cyber Security Month andNational Cyber Security Awareness Month, to underscore its leadership in online security and its strong commitment to protecting devices, data and people, at home and at work.

New features of the updated AVG Protection and AVG Performance suites include:

AVG Protection

Available in FREE or PRO versions, AVG Protection includes AVG’s leading AVG AntiVirus software for Windows, Android or Mac, and features the following updates:

AVG AntiVirus for Windows

  • Real-Time Cloud Detection: helps instantly spot new malware outbreaks using up-to-the-minute cloud-based crowd intelligence.
  • AI Detection: uses advanced artificial intelligence and crowd-sourced data to proactively identify new threats in real-time, before our AVG VirusLab team has catalogued the threats.
  • Improved Online Shield: in the PRO version includescloud-based detection to identify dangerous downloads faster than ever.

AVG AntiVirus for Android

  • Better malware protection: Better protect your phone or tablet, thanks to new smart cloud scanning, shortened scan times, and improved detection.
  • Improved Anti-Theft: Improved algorithms make remote location faster on FREE and PRO.
  • More informative: To make scan results easier to understand, we’ve integrated with AVG VirusLab to provide more information about the threats we find.
  • Improved Battery Save mode: We’ve made it easier to improve your battery life by allowing you to turn on Battery Save mode from directly within the low-battery notifications in your phone’s notification panel.

AVG AntiVirus for Mac

  • New Quarantine: in AVG AntiVirus for Mac now lets users isolate infected files from the rest of their Mac devices, so they can decide how to handle them at a later time.

AVG Performance

Comprising AVG’s three tuneup products – AVG PC TuneUp, AVG Cleaner for Android and AVG Cleaner for Mac – the upgraded AVG Performance suite includes the following:

AVG PC Tune Up

  • New Tuning Dashboard: giving users faster access to all tuning features and better visibility of potential performance issues.
  • Enhanced PC cleaning: now cleans up more games from Steam, the Download folder and additional applications such as VMware.
  • Enhanced Browser Cleaner: removes 60 types of browser traces from the latest browsers such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome and Firefox.

AVG Cleaner for Android

  • New App Manager: gives users an immediate overview of the most draining apps from a single screen and helps to get rid of them once and for all.

AVG Cleaner for Mac

  • New iPhoto Cache cleaning: to stop iPhoto ‘cache’ folders taking up space and preventing photo deletion over time.

AVG Protection and AVG Performance are available to download now via the AVG website. PRO versions of both suites, which include features such as AVG Internet Security, are also available for 30-day trials, or to purchase as annual subscriptions for $59.99 (Protection) or $39.99 (Performance).

AVG Has A Privacy Policy That’s So Honest, You May Not Use Their Product

Posted in Commentary with tags , on September 18, 2015 by itnerd

I’m used to skimming through the privacy policies of software or online service companies and getting confused about what’s in them. The good news is that anti-virus vendor AVG has come up with a privacy policy that is in plain English. The bad news is that you won’t like what they say:

We collect non-personal data to make money from our free offerings so we can keep them free, including:

  • Advertising ID associated with your device;
  • Browsing and search history, including meta data;
  • Internet service provider or mobile network you use to connect to our products; and
  • Information regarding other applications you may have on your device and how they are used.

At least they’re honest about it. But I am not sure how users would react to this. I am guessing that some may stop using their products. Free or otherwise.

Here’s my ask: Read through their privacy policy that is to go into effect on October 15th and leave a comment in terms of what you think of it. I’d be really interested to get your thoughts.

Infographic: Kids Competing with Mobile Phones for Parents’ Attention

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 28, 2015 by itnerd

Research conducted by AVG examined children’s perceptions of their parents’ mobile device use, and uncovered some worrying trends. For starters, mobile phones are gaining an increasing share in the battle for parental attention. There’s other really interesting info that parents should pay attention to. Here’s an infographic that highlights these perceptions.


Source: AVG

AVG Announces Releases New Performance-Boosting Products for PC, Mac and Android

Posted in Commentary with tags on May 7, 2015 by itnerd

AVG announced new versions of its performance products for Windows, Mac OS and Android. The latest releases of AVG PC TuneUp 2015, AVG Cleaner for Android and AVG Cleaner for Mac help users clean up, speed up and improve battery life of their devices more efficiently and thoroughly than before.

The desktop and mobile apps are available individually or as a whole package in the AVG Performance suite available within the AVG Zen platform to make it easy to maintain all your devices and those of your family from a single dashboard. AVG Zen runs across desktops and mobile devices to provide a simple approach to help people secure their online lives.

AVG PC TuneUp 2015 – improved cleaning and ready for Windows 10:

  • Cleans up leftover files from the Downloads folder, removes wasteful distributable files generated from the Steam gaming platform and offers more thorough cleaning for the Google Chrome™ browser. All updates will be installed automatically on April 29.
  • AVG PC TuneUp and all of its 39 features to speed up and clean up PCs are now fully compatible with the upcoming Windows 10 operating system, expected to release in summer 2015.


AVG Cleaner for Android 2.3.1 – new ‘App Manager’ spots top resource-hungry apps:

  • Helps identify resource-hungry apps that drain the battery, eat up precious storage and use up too much mobile traffic on your smartphone or tablet. By tapping on the categories, users can then select multiple apps they no longer want with a simple tap, and get rid of them instantly.
  • New ‘App Manager’ feature gives users an immediate overview of apps with useful graphs which show:
    • Running Apps:Shows all running apps and how much RAM they are consuming
    • Unused Apps:Identifies all apps that the user hasn’t used in a long time
    • Data Usage, Battery Usage and Storage: Helps users spot the largest apps and the ones with the most battery and mobile traffic drain


AVG Cleaner for Mac (Build 4764):

  • Now provides cleaning for iPhoto Cache, which can even become corrupt over time
  • New user interface to make it easier to clean up leftover and duplicate files



The complete AVG Performance suite includes all three apps and comes as a 1 year ($39.99) or 2 year subscription ($79.98). AVG PC TuneUp (2015 release) standalone product is also available for 1 year (1PC) for $39.99. AVG Cleaner PRO for Android is available standalone for $0.99 a month or $4.99 annually from or the Google Play StoreAVG Cleaner for Mac is available for free from the Mac App store or our AVG Cleaner for Mac pages.

AVG Previews Latest AVG Zen Platform

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 5, 2015 by itnerd

AVG announced today that they previewed the next version of the AVG Zen platform to mobile operators and original equipment manufacturers (OEM). With the consumer launch currently planned for later this year, AVG Zen delivers a new family-first approach to security, including support for industry partner apps and wearables on customers’ devices, all in one place.

The next version of AVG Zen delivers three core pillars:

  • A subscription security service for families that includes AVG AntiVirus and AVG Cleaner across their devices to give them confidence in their digital lifestyle. AVG AntiVirus for Android was the first mobile security product to enter the 100-500 million downloads category on the Google Play store.
  • A dedicated set of family products from Location Labs by AVG including phone controls and location services. Already offered by the top four US mobile operators, extending the availability of these products through AVG Zen makes it even easier for families to communicate and share location. Phone controls gives parents peace of mind when giving their children their first mobile device, allowing them to monitor and set limits.
  • A platform for mobile operators to deliver context-aware solutions for core services. This could be, for example, notifying a user if they are running low on storage or approaching their data limit.AVG Zen is open to partners looking to expand their offerings directly to AVG’s 197 million end users.

AVG Zen enables mobile operators to provide context-aware alerts, updates and information direct to the customer to give them control and transparency of their security across their family, data, and devices.

The latest version of the AVG Zen platform has a consumer release scheduled for later this year