Letter from ESET’s CEO, Anton Zajac regarding signature data base issue 5417

Dear ESET Valued Partner,

As you know, ESET this week issued a bad signature update. It contained a flaw that caused some of our partners and their customers to experience significant system issues. I want to personally apologize on behalf of all of us at ESET for the effort and time you have spent resolving the issue.

I also want to explain exactly what happened, and everything we’ve done, and will continue to do, to help.

How Did This Happen?

Thursday morning at 4:23 AM Eastern Time, ESET issued virus signature database update 5417, which contained a flaw that could cause problems with subsequent updates. At 8:36 AM we released update 5418, which regrettably triggered the flaw, causing a number of customers’ systems and servers to become non-responsive.

The malfunction in signature database version 5417 was only apparent upon a subsequent update. As a result, this was not revealed during the testing of version 5417, allowing it to be publically released.

Two hours later, ESET issued update 5419, which contained a fix for the issue, but required a reboot for the fix to take effect. At approximately 3:00 p.m. EDT, we provided a tool to resolve the issue without a reboot.

Where to Find Information and Help:

Detailed instructions on how to resolve the problem, including the tool to resolve the issue without a reboot, can be found at http://kb.eset.com/esetkb/index?page=content&id=NEWS101.

In addition, our customer care is available 24×7 at 619-876-5490 to help you directly.

What ESET Will Do Differently in the Future:

  • Improved antivirus and antispyware protection against evolving threats
  • New antispam protection integrates technologies such as RBL, DNSBL, fingerprinting, reputation checking, content analysis, Bayesian filtering, rules, manual whitelisting/blacklisting to ensure maximum detection of email threats
  • We are undergoing a complete audit of our Quality Assurance process.
  • We are establishing a new communication channel to more effectively and proactively communicate with our partners.
  • We will elaborate on the procedure used when adjusting the code and will carry out simulations of updates to new versions.
  • We will employ to a greater extent the use of our pre-release servers, subjecting updates to extensive testing with several update phases.

Everyone at ESET is extremely aggressive in the fight against viruses and malware. We value the safety and security of your customers – and our strategic partnership – as our highest priorities. However, this week, we failed you with a bad update. I want you to know that we are taking every possible action throughout our entire organization to make sure that never happens again.
Please do not hesitate to contact me personally at zajac@eset.com if there is anything you need from us. And again, please accept our sincere apologies from myself and all of us at ESET.

Yours truly,

Anton Zajac


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