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Symantec declares antivirus 'dead' as it focuses on damage control

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Given how hard antivirus software makers push you to sign up, you'd think that business was booming. Far from it, according to Symantec's Brian Dye. He tells the Wall Street Journal that antivirus tools like his company's Norton suite are effectively "dead." The utilities now catch less than half of all attacks, according to the executive -- to him, the focus is on minimizing the damage whenever there's a successful hack or infection.

To that end, Symantec plans to sell both recovery services and threat briefings to corporate customers. In the long run, it should also have technology that finds malware trying to imitate other apps. However, the developer can't give up its original cash cow just yet. Antivirus packages like Norton still make up more than 40 percent of the company's revenue, and the new services won't safeguard your PC at home. You can still count on security software hanging around, then -- just be aware that you may need extra software (and a healthy dose of caution) to stay safe.

[Image credit: Shutterstock / David Orcea]

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