Done reading up on it? Good.
Legit AV firms experiment with unethical sales techniques. It’s a fact of life.
Antivirus firms sometimes experiment with unethical sales techniques. It’s just a fact of life. Take McAfee, for example — in 1998 I took them to task for pushing “beneficial spam” and in 2009 I attacked them for claiming their software fights global warming.
I expect Zone Alarm will get embarrassed over this sales technique and it’ll go away. The rest of the industry will learn a lesson the easy way … and we won’t see it again anytime soon.
Every firm that protects customers from fake-AV malware, by default, must analyze how the malware spreads. This leads us to ask a philosophical question:
Should legit antivirus firms incorporate successful fake antivirus sales tactics into their own marketing plans?
To you & me, the answer to this philosophical question seems obvious. To a legit antivirus firm, though, the answer may prove … elusive.
There is a certain logic to what Zone Alarm did. Scareware firms draw truly amazing incomes, and computer security firms ultimately report to their shareholders. Need I say more?
Before a company like Zone Alarm can answer our philosophical question, they must first decide if they analyze scareware tactics only for their customers’ benefit — or if they now also analyze it for their marketing team’s benefit…