Network Associates To Provide Feds With Y2K Support

Network Associates (Nasdaq: NETA) has announced that it will offer Y2K-related computer virus information and support to the CyberAssurance National Information Center effort that is being coordinated by the President’s Council on the Year 2000 Conversion Information Coordination Center (ICC).

The utility software solutions vendor will lend the resources of its Anti-Virus Emergency Response Team (AVERT) “during the most critical virus security days of the Y2K changeover for American businesses,” said a Network Associates statement. According to the company, however, the threat posed by “Y2K viruses” will not be limited to New Year’s alone.

January 1st and Beyond

“While it’s possible there may be increased activity around Y2K, any new virus that is released around the changeover will most likely not begin to affect businesses until January 4th, when most of the world’s workforce has had a day to come in, read their e-mail, and click on attachments,” commented Chengi Jimmy Kuo, director of anti-virus research for Network Associates.

“Because of this, Network Associates will be providing information and support from its worldwide locations for the ICC on those critical days.”

The ICC, established by the President’s Council on Year 2000 Conversion, is offering information on Y2K changeover activities on an around-the-clock basis. Operations began on December 28, 1999 and will continue actively through February 29, 2000.

AVERT, which currently employs more than 90 virus researchers and maintains international labs, is available online to businesses and consumers, offering information on new viruses, hoaxes and response measures.

Good Y2K Sense

Network Associates recently posted anti-virus and online security tips for consumers and corporations for the New Year at its Y2K Damage Control Center.

Surfers are advised to be wary of e-mail attachments, turn on macro virus protection, be cautious with free downloads, guard personal and financial information, and protect online transactions by using a secure Web browser. Teaching children online safety tips is highly encouraged.

The Network Associates “bonus tip,” however, is to be careful, and not to “believe everything you hear.”

Security Vigilance

In other Y2K-related news, Para Protect warned businesses this week to bring compliance and security efforts together, focusing on the possibility of an opportunistic system breach around New Year’s Eve.

The online security firm recommended that administrators look for “unexplained anomalies,” according to a published report, and respond to such occurrences as potential security threats.

Not Too Late

Beyond.com (Nasdaq: BYND) has issued an advisory to consumers that have ignored Y2K-related issues, stating that it is not too late to update their systems. The online software store’s Millennium Center is available, providing anti-virus software downloads and information.

“Now that Christmas is over, computer owners are beginning to address their own Y2K needs,” stated Trinka Dyer, vice president and general manager of Beyond.com’s consumer division. The site features downloadable versions of McAfee’s VirusScan and Y2K Survival Kit products and other mood lightening “Y2K accessories.”

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