Symantec Advises Users To Update Or Disable PcAnywhere

"I use and recommend," Ken Garen.

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Symantec Advises Users To Update Or Disable PcAnywhere
JANUARY 26, 2012, 1:03 P.M. ET.

--Threat to remote-access software only
--Updates fix vulnerability
--No reports of customer data loss

By Steven D. Jones
Symantec Corp. (SYMC) is advising customers to immediately update or disable its pcAnywhere software following the exposure earlier this month of source code stolen six years ago.

The company is notifying customers of potential problems and advising them to immediately update pcAnywhere software or disable it, said Cris Paden, a company spokesman. The product's roughly 50,000 users, most of which are businesses, haven't reported suspicious activity or penetration of network security, he said.

On Monday, the Cupertino, Calif., company began distributing updates to pcAnywhere version 12.5. The updates will continue through Friday.

"With pcAnywhere there may be some vulnerability," Paden said. "We're erring on the side of caution."

Symantec's efforts come after portions of some of its enterprise security source code were posted to the Web earlier this month. The company said the pilfered code was six years old but determined that it still posed a potential problem to pcAnywhere. The company's updates are designed to address any potential vulnerabilities.

The pcAnywhere product generates about $20 million annually, a sliver of the company's roughly $6 billion in total revenue.

In midday trading Thursday, Symantec shares were down 1% at $16.89.

The threat emerged on Jan. 5, when a group posted the source code on the Internet, claiming it exposed a weaknesses in Symantec's Norton Antivirus software, the leading product in the company's $2 billion consumer software business. It is used by 150 million customers worldwide. Norton Antivirus was never threatened.

Symantec continues to monitor its global networks for suspicious activity connected with the attack, said Paden.

Paden said none of Symantec's other security products have been compromised.

-By Steven D. Jones, Dow Jones Newswires; 360-834-1865;


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