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Re: Running AV via SSH? (Was: Re: Bad Antivirus)
From: Michael Peppard <mpeppard () impole com>
Date: Mon, 18 Feb 2013 15:59:39 -0500


On 02/16/2013 06:59 PM, Tracy Reed wrote:
On Thu, Feb 14, 2013 at 06:26:29AM PST, Michael Peppard spake thusly:
The scan is a stopgap for killing the functionality of the virus and to get
information on the virus, it's not the first or last line of defence.
So if the antivirus does not detect anything, what is your next step?
Someone is going to fix the problem, regardless. It's your departments job to fix computer problems.

They (help support staff) do a root cause analysis. It could be an enduser installed software your firewall or sniffer is reacting to. It could be settings that over a phone call could be interpreted as a virus. It could be a problem with a software update. It could be many things hardware and software related. The least statistically probable is a virus that wasn't detected. Least probable and most probable don't matter to a root cause analysis, except the order you check the causal tree branches.

If it's a virus or rootkit based on observed behaviour or changes to the computer or a pattern of problems that indicate spreading on the network etc etc then you run a backup of the profile from the bootable CD you've been using and reinstall from a network image. After getting a sample of the virus for one of the antivirus companies you deal with. You should have a escalation plan, dependant on your staffs skills, for these types of issues.

If the virus makes it past the antivirus, the antivirus has to be reinstalled
at a minimum. If the virus is unknown or has a rootkit which all your
antivirus/rootkit tools are incapable of getting rid of then the machine has
to be rebuilt off a clone for that type of desktop or server.
I would say the machine has to be reinstalled. And I always recommend reinstall
regardless of whether the AV says it has "cleaned" the machine.

There are half a million viruses and variants that your antivirus cleans just fine. If your desktop antivirus is compromised then there's a very good chance you will have to spend a thousand dollars or so*. It's a decision that has to be made after root cause analysis. Some eicar equivalent isn't going to justify scrubbing a drive.

*2 salaries and benefits for at least half a day plus opportunity costs. People tend to get cranky when you lose their work, so the backup may take additional time.


Why bother trying to save the machine? Because endusers get fussy when they
can't get kitten emails from their friends all day.
What's more important? The end-users kittens or the security of the enterprise?
If your execs don't understand and support you on this you are sunk anyway.


Don't read any of this as being complacent about security. I'm willing to shut the company down for as long as it takes to fix an infection. I ban java and flash despite backlashes.

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