Symantec has released its public beta-test editions of Norton Internet Security 2010 and Norton AntiVirus 2010.
Named after an elephant, Norton is popular but just as difficult to steer, but this version claims to change all that.
Under the bonnet is a new protection system codenamed Quorum. The beta also has a new interface.
According to the press release, the bet marks “a significant shift in the way the global leader in security software will protect computer users from cyber crime.”
The 2010 editions use a reputation-based malware detection which Symantec thinks can detect zero-day malware.
In addition to this improved heuristic testing system, the 2010 family uses the traditional signature based detection system for known threats. At the centre of the software is a control system called SONAR 2 which directs the software to use either the heuristic or the signature system
The new beta has a bit of code called Autopsy with aims to help the user understand what is going on after the attack has happened and provide more detail.
However one of the downsides of anti-virus software, particularly Norton, is that it slows down the computer as it has to test for this long shopping list of threats.
In 2010 there is an improved Norton Insight, which identifies known good programs to speed scanning. Some of the functions seem to be providing information so users can make an informed choice about letting software do what it likes.
Norton’s weak spam filter has also been updated and uses a spam filter, based on BrightMail’s technology, accurately identify spam without requiring so much training.