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Windows 7: Check Point defends ZoneAlarm scareware-style warning

22 Sep 2010   #1

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit. SP1.
Check Point defends ZoneAlarm scareware-style warning


Check Point has defended controversial marketing tactics that confronted ZoneAlarm users with what critics describe as a scareware-style dialogue box to convince them to upgrade to paid-for personal firewall software.

Users of the free version of the personal firewall were confronted by a warning that their PCs 'may be in danger' from a newly found variant of the infamous ZeuS banking Trojan. Users were encouraged to upgrade to the full-fat version of the product, which bundles anti-virus technology, via a linked page that dissed the ability of competitors, including AVG, Avira, Avast and Norton, to identify the threat.

The warning appeared whether or not users were infected with any malware. No attempt was made to check whether users had any anti-virus software installed, a feature not bundled with free versions of the personal firewall. Users have complained on ZoneAlarm's forum that the warning was merely a pushy attempt to scare them into buying a paid-for version of the product, an accusation Check Point disputes.

In a statement, Check Point claimed it was simply pointing out the dangers of a prevalent security threat. It denied accusations that the warning message might panic users into believing they were infected with the Zeus variant.
The popup message in ZoneAlarm Free Firewall was intended as an alert to a virus our technology discovered. We wanted to proactively let our users know that ZoneAlarm Free Firewall and other AV products do not fully protect from this virus. It was never our intent to lead customers to believe they have a virus on their computer. This was purely an informative message about a legitimate and serious virus that also included information about the differences in protection of various products, and how to get protection against it.

ZoneAlarm is committed to providing our customers with the best protection and considers it our job to proactively alert users whenever a potential risk is looming rather than wait for the damage to be done.
More -
Check Point defends ZoneAlarm scareware-style warning • The Register

My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Sep 2010   #2

Windows 7 & Windows Vista Ultimate

As if we don't have enough issues with rogues and their scareware methods, now we have an unscrupulous attempt by Check Point marketing to beef up business. I stopped recommending ZA three years ago when the pre-checked Ask Toolbar was added.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Sep 2010   #3

windows 7 ( ultimate) /xp (home)

See the thing is it says "global virus alert" ! (under it , YOUR PC MIGHT BE IN DANGER)
so that means you don't have it but you might get it !
read it again and ask yourself , did they say something like "you have a virus ??"

My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Sep 2010   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate 32 bit

That is disgusting, underhanded promotion. I certainly do not recommend ZA for Win 7 and now I will not recommend it at all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Sep 2010   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x86

You KNOW those tactics are targeting the less experienced users. And when those people get a pop up like that all they see is Risk :HIGH. They are used to get only pop ups about issues that apply to them....
It didn't say anywhere that it's just a friendly suggestion either
And THIS is exactly what makes the whole action a shameless Scare ware scam.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Sep 2010   #6

windows 7 ( ultimate) /xp (home)

just use something like the ONE and ONLY Kasperky Pure 2011
you'll be good forever

or try your own security suit like firstly an av (MSE , AVIRA)
Then try a Firewall (BULGUARD , COMODO)
And a second line of defense (Malewarebyts and hitman pro)
and a cleanup crew (Ccleaner)

My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Sep 2010   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, clean install, upgrade disc

In addition, it has been known to cause BSODs. When making a BSOD analysis I suggest that ZA be removed, at least for test purposes. This problem is so prevalent that MS has offered a Hot Fix.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Sep 2010   #8

Windows 7 & Windows Vista Ultimate

There are a lot of threads on Microsoft Answers with ZA causing problems both with Windows Update and also updating MSE.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Check Point defends ZoneAlarm scareware-style warning

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