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First Comprehensive Transaction Security Solution

News Release


Symantec Delivers World’s First Comprehensive Transaction Security Solution

Norton Confidential Provides Broad Protection Against Online Fraud for Windows, Macintosh Users

Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC) today announced Norton Confidential, a comprehensive online transaction security solution that will allow consumers to transact on the internet with confidence that their personal information will remain safe. Designed to restore consumers’ trust in the online world, Norton Confidential protects consumers at the moment they are transacting and provides unprecedented zero-hour protection against fraudulent web sites and crimeware. Separate versions of Norton Confidential are scheduled to be available for users of the Windows operating system in September and the Macintosh operating system in October.

“Today’s increasingly sophisticated internet threats target passwords, account numbers and other confidential information,” said Jonathan Singer, analyst, Yankee Group. “Consumers are looking for protection from identity theft and fraud so they can transact safely online. “

“As the internet landscape has become more crowded with phishing sites and threats designed to steal information for financial gain, consumer confidence in conducting business online has eroded,” said Simone Milne, consumer sales manager, Symantec New Zealand. “To help restore confidence in doing business over the internet, Symantec is introducing Norton Confidential – the first solution that offers consumers both fraud site and crimeware protection for their personal information at the point of greatest risk – during a transaction, login or other submission of confidential data to a web site.”
To further help consumers protect themselves from online fraud, Symantec today launched the TransactSafely web site, located at This new site helps consumers understand today’s sophisticated online threats in simple terms and offers practical tips on security measures users can take to protect themselves while browsing, shopping or banking online. When Norton Confidential’s beta program launches later this quarter, consumers will be able to visit the TransactSafely web site to download an early version of the product and provide feedback on the new solution.

Over the past 12 months, attacks designed to steal confidential information have grown at an alarming pace. This recent surge in financially motivated attacks is reflected in Symantec’s latest Internet Security Threat Report, which indicates that during the second half of 2005, 80 percent of the top 50 malicious software threats had the potential to expose confidential data. This represents a significant increase over the 54 percent of confidential information exposure threats during the same six-month period in 2004. Although consumers continue to embrace the convenience of the internet for banking and shopping, the growth in these fraudulent attacks has impacted their confidence. According to a June 2006 Symantec research study conducted by Big Picture, 59 percent of Kiwis were concerned about online identity theft and 47 percent are worried about online banking security.

Norton Confidential addresses these pressing security concerns by focusing its innovative technologies on the moment that consumers are most vulnerable – while they are banking or shopping online or on any site where they submit passwords, account numbers or other personal information. When a consumer is communicating or transacting with a web site, Norton Confidential transparently scans both the PC and the current web page for known or suspected fraudulent activity, providing immediate feedback so the consumer knows whether or not it is safe to proceed.

Fraud site Protection

The majority of today’s existing antiphishing solutions rely solely on block lists to identify known fraud sites. Norton Confidential combines traditional block lists with advanced heuristic technology to protect consumers from previously undiscovered phishing attacks. This zero-hour protection is critical since phishing attacks are purposely short-lived to evade detection. In fact, according to the Anti-Phishing Working Group, the average phishing site is online for only five days before it is taken down and replaced by a new fraudulent web site.

Crimeware Protection

Norton Confidential also uses a combination of definition-based and advanced heuristic technologies to protect users from both known and unknown crimeware. This extra layer of security stops programs like keystroke loggers and screen capture Trojan horse applications that target consumers’ passwords and other confidential information. When known crimeware is detected, it is removed immediately. When the heuristic analysis detects suspiciously behaving software, it prevents the suspected application from capturing the consumer’s personal information.

Web site Authentication

Norton Confidential’s web site authentication component helps restore consumers’ trust in transacting online by verifying the authenticity of many popular banking and shopping web sites. By displaying a special visual cue when the user visits a genuine Secure Socket Layer (SSL) site, Norton Confidential assures the consumer that they can proceed safely.

Confidential Information Management Protection

Norton Confidential rounds out its defences with password security capabilities that store and encrypt login information. For extra protection, Norton Confidential alerts users when they send their credentials to unknown or unauthorised sites and even provides feedback on password strength.

Norton Confidential for the Macintosh

Norton Confidential will also be available for the Macintosh operating system and will include many of the same security features found in the Windows XP version. The Macintosh product offers users protection from fraudulent web sites and provides confidential data management as well as crimeware protection and tamper protection for critical files.

About Symantec

Symantec is the world leader in providing solutions to help individuals and enterprises assure the security, availability and integrity of their information. Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., Symantec has operations in more than 40 countries. More information is available at


New Zealanders are concerned about online banking, identity theft and shopping security

Key findings: Security issues and concerns
* 47 percent of respondents are concerned about online banking security.

* 45 percent are concerned about the security of shopping online.

* 59 percent of consumers are concerned about identity theft:
* 49 percent believe physical theft (wallets, cheque books or credit cards) is likely to be the means of identity theft.
* 14 percent of respondents believe that computer spyware is a source of identity theft.
* 13 percent believe online transactions are a source of identity theft.

Key findings: Shopping online
* Three quarters (77 percent) of respondents claim to have purchased something over the internet at some stage. A key barrier for consumers who have not purchased online is not trusting the internet:
* 21 percent of respondents do not trust the internet, finding online transactions too risky.
* 14 percent of respondents are concerned their credit card details may be stolen.

* 57 percent of respondents pay for goods by entering credit card details directly on the site they are purchasing from; 31 percent use net bank transfer, whilst 16 percent phone through their credit card details.

* 49 percent of respondents use the security policy of the website they're purchasing from as criteria for assessing the security risk for online payments; 46 percent of respondents use the reputation of the company they're purchasing from; 32 percent use their past experience with the site they're purchasing from.

Key findings: Other activities and online transactions
* Key online activity includes:
o Email for 92 percent of respondents
o Browsing for 73 percent
o Banking for 60 percent
o 42 percent pay bills online
o 39 percent make bookings for flights, concert tickets, etc online.

Key findings: Internet awareness and protection
* Alarmingly, most consumers never change their passwords: 74 percent of respondents never change their email login password, 62 percent never change their PC login password, 49 percent never change their online banking password and 40 percent never change their passwords on e-commerce sites.

* 70 percent believe it is the banks' responsibility if there are costs incurred through breaches of security, while only 5 percent of people believe that they should personally absorb any costs or losses in the event of breaches of security.

* 42 percent say they have had a virus infect their computer and 54 percent claim to have received large amounts of spam and unwanted email.

* At least 89 percent of people have anti-virus software on their computer;
3 percent have none and a further 9 percent of respondents were not sure.

* 72 percent of respondents claim to have firewall protection on their home PC.

* 78 percent of respondents feel they get adequate protection from their anti-virus software.

* 25 percent of respondents feel safe because they have antivirus software installed and regularly update it.

* 74 percent of respondents run an anti-virus update at least once a week, with 35 percent running an update at least daily.

* 41 percent of respondents update their security settings because they are concerned.

About the survey
The survey was conducted by Big Picture - Marketing Strategy & Research Limited on behalf of Symantec.

A total of 200 respondents aged between 18 and 59 years who identified themselves as the person most responsible for looking after their home PC/security were surveyed. 59 percent of respondents were female; 64 percent had a desktop computer at home; 51 percent are still using dial up modems while a third of respondents are using ADSL broadband.


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