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Norman joins Anti-Malware Testing Standards Organization

February 2008 by Emmanuelle Lamandé

More than 40 security software technologists and anti-malware testers from around the world recently met in Bilbao, Spain to formalize the charter of the Anti-Malware Testing Standards Organization, or AMTSO.

The formation of AMTSO has been driven by industry-wide concern about the increasing mismatch between what anti-malware technologies actually do, and the testing methodologies used to evaluate them. As anti-malware solutions become more complex, many existing tests are unable to evaluate product effectiveness properly, resulting in product reviews that are sometimes incomplete, inaccurate and misleading.

Most testers have been sticking to the same methodologies (if any) for too many years. These methodologies are incompatible with new technologically advanced methods to detect malware. Not knowing the concept of new technologies often results in flawed comparative results. Norman is proud to participate in the organization to guide them with a described minimum set of requirements for testing to have testers understand that methodologies should be flexible and adjustable to comply with new technological techniques, Righard J. Zwienenberg, Norman.

AMTSO is focused on addressing the global need for improvement in the objectivity, quality and relevance of testing methodologies. The organization also aims to promulgate universally adopted standards and guidelines for anti-malware testing. The vision for AMTSO was formed in May 2007 during the International Antivirus Testing Workshop in Reykjavik, Iceland, and developed further during the Antivirus Asia Researchers Conference in Seoul, South Korea last December. Pursuant to its preliminary charter, AMTSO will:
- Provide a forum for discussions related to the testing of anti-malware and related products;
- Develop and publicize objective standards and best practices for testing of anti-malware and related products;
- Promote education and awareness of issues related to the testing of anti-malware and related products;
- Provide tools and resources to aid standards-based testing methodologies; and,
- Provide analysis and review of current and future testing of anti-malware and related products.

Hosted by Panda Security, the meeting in Bilbao included representatives from the industry’s leading companies and testing organizations, including:
ALWIL Software
AV-Comparatives
AV-Test.org
AVG Technologies
Avira GmbH
Bit9
BitDefender
Dr. Web, Ltd.
ESET
F-Secure Corporation
G DATA Software
Hispasec Sistemas
International Business Machines Corporation
Kaspersky Lab
McAfee, Inc.
Microsoft Corp.
Norman ASA
Panda Security
PC Tools
Sana Security
Secure Computing
Sophos Plc
Symantec Corporation
Trend Micro Incorporated
Virusbuster Ltd.


AMTSO is dedicated to helping improve the objectivity, quality and relevance of anti-malware technology testing. AMTSO membership is open to industry-wide academics, reviewers, testers and vendors, subject to guidelines determined by AMTSO.




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