Microsoft Security Essentials flunks another antivirus test

7 Feb 2013

Dennis Technology Labs reveals Security Essentials is missing 41% of threats

Microsoft's Security Essentials has stumbled again in an independent antivirus test, after the company complained such testing wasn't realistic.

Last month, Microsoft complained that results from AV-Test labs showing it missing a majority of zero-day threats didn't accurately represent what happened in the real world, as its customers rarely came across such malware.

Those results contributed to Microsoft Security Essentials winning a single star out of six for performance in the security suites labs in the current issue of PC Pro.

Now, a test by Dennis Technology Labs (DTL) - a testing firm affiliated with PC Pro's publisher - has ranked Microsoft's free security suite last out of eight major antivirus providers, missing 41% of all threats.

The results add weight to AV-Test's findings that Security Essentials is falling behind rival security suites, with DTL saying Microsoft's software is "notably poor at protecting the system from malware".

"The effectiveness of paid-for anti-malware security suites varies widely but all beat Microsoft’s free product," the report said. "Nearly every product was compromised at least once. The most effective were compromised just once or not at all, while the least effective (Microsoft Security Essentials) was compromised by 41% of the threats."

The next worst score was McAfee, but it missed only 7% of threats.

Microsoft Security Essentials did perform well when it came to the issue of raising false alarms, not blocking off any legitimate applications in the belief they were malware.

Pick up this month's issue of PC Pro for the full results of our security labs and click here to read the full results of Dennis Technology Lab's tests

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