News Column

Patent Issued for Method and Apparatus for Monitoring a Computer System for Malicious Software

August 7, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Computer Weekly News -- From Alexandria, Virginia, VerticalNews journalists report that a patent by the inventor Sankruthi, Anand D. (Bangalore, IN), filed on September 15, 2008, was published online on July 22, 2014.

The patent's assignee for patent number 8789185 is Symantec Corporation (Mountain View, CA).

News editors obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Embodiments of the present invention generally relate to a computer system security and, more particularly, to a method and apparatus for monitoring a computer system to detect self-propagating malicious software.

"Malicious software programs (e.g., virus, Trojans, and the like) are designed to disrupt normal activities within a computing environment for a large organization. For example, the malicious software programs corrupt mission-critical data and/or render unusable one or more computer hardware devices. As a result, the large organization experiences a substantial loss in productivity. Furthermore, a significant amount of time and money is spent to recover any lost data. Accordingly, the malicious software programs threaten the potential growth of the large organization and affect the usability of the computing environment.

"Viruses are common forms of the malicious software programs. Generally, a virus is usually an unauthorized block of an executable program (or some unit of code, e.g., instructions to which the computer responds, such as a code block, code element or code segment) that may be attached to other programs and/or files. Sometimes, the virus is received through a file attached to an email, an Instant Message (IM) and/or a similar message exchanged through communication software. Once executed, the viruses spread quickly by attaching themselves to various resources and infecting computer programs. Further, the viruses self-propagate by sending a copy of itself to each of the contacts in an address book.

"The number of new viruses and variants of existing viruses is increasing at such a higher pace that it has become difficult for existing anti-virus systems to keep pace with the release of new viruses. There is a very small window of opportunity to respond to a new virus. Furthermore, conventional techniques of virus detection are unable to quickly recognize new viruses. As a result, the viruses cause unrecoverable damages to the computing environment.

"Accordingly, there is a need in the art for an efficient method and apparatus for monitoring a computer system to detect and prevent new self-propagating viruses."

As a supplement to the background information on this patent, VerticalNews correspondents also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent: "Embodiments of the present invention comprise a method and apparatus for monitoring a computer system for malicious software. In one embodiment, the method for monitoring malicious software proliferation comprising processing a deceptive contact address associated with a monitoring device and inserting the deceptive contact address into a contact list, wherein malicious software self-propagates through the contact list, wherein the monitoring device receives a copy of the malicious software through the deceptive contact address."

For additional information on this patent, see: Sankruthi, Anand D.. Method and Apparatus for Monitoring a Computer System for Malicious Software. U.S. Patent Number 8789185, filed September 15, 2008, and published online on July 22, 2014. Patent URL:

Keywords for this news article include: Viruses, Software, Virology, Symantec Corporation.

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Source: Computer Weekly News

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