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SCI: Tech Fears Arise Over Norton and Pifts.exe

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posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:00 PM
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What happened to reply anonymously? This is the first time I have needed to use it apart from when I forgot my password!

Symantec still seem to stink of something dodgy to me. Why didn't they issue this information in the release notes for the update or when the question started to appear on the forums?

I can possibly see why all threads regarding pifts.exe were removed from the forums, when these groups decide to raid somewhere it is not a few posts but a torrent that is uncontrollable. Having taken part in some of these raids, I have seen many places crumble and fall. The easiest way an admin could halt this is by deleting all threads containing certain terms.

However, threads relating to this topic were removed before any raiding began.

I do not really use any Symantec products and will be in rush to in future.




posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:00 PM
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reply to post by XXXN3O
 


No, it took them 24 hours to think up some [censored] to explain it.


[edit on 10-3-2009 by Sliick]



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:02 PM
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reply to post by CaptainCaveMan
 


True, it is starting to smell like something. But for us to get to the bottom of this, this Humongous company that is very important to the internet world, is a big task. I hate to just throw my hands up, but what they want us to know will be told to us, there won't be any exposure of any wrong doings if they are in good relations with the bOObs at the FBI, they are all corrupt.


That is why I try to dead this, cuz for as far as we have come (hacking, codes, pdf re-arrangement, etc), nothing gets exposed.


There is hope tho, summer of love 09?


Summer of riots and violence 09?


anyways its 40 years since woodstock!! Lets do something on a similar scale and shake things up. F**k these companies that lie to us...

Sorry sorry just droppin info on whats been in my head



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:04 PM
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reply to post by Sliick
 


Oh, I thought that smell was the fields outside.

Something does smell funny about this and covering it up is just going to make more stink in the end.

I want the pifting truth.

Ill remember this one for a long time.



[edit on 10-3-2009 by XXXN3O]



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:04 PM
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Originally posted by zsrgt
reply to post by Zepherian
 


My problem with your post, well one of many, is that you are saying until you have proof it isn't a conspiracy you can assume it is. Erm... it doesn't quite work like that does it...

The burden of proof should be on the accuser, rather than the defender to prove a negative. That's like me saying there is an invisible china teapot floating around Mars. We can take it as true until you can prove 100% that there isn't.

I tend to look at it if it is between conspiracy and incompetency, I'll err on the side of incompetency.



No, what I said is that untill a definitive account is on the table the conspiracy theory is valid. I'm not saying the the conspiracy is real, it is mearly a framework for investigation.

In short, there is a difference between speculating and knowing. I speculate that the conspiracy is the reality, but I don't know it is at this point. Untill a more solid explanation is on the table my speculation is valid. An opinion is not an account.

Like most people here I don't know what happened, but it dosen't look good from the indications.

Where there's smoke there's fire...



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:05 PM
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Here a scenario.
They included, by mistake, an update for the use of the online backup which is included in the new 360 version, in all updates.
But, the intelligent updater, would detect what version you are using, and would not download that update, unless you had 360.
So something is very fishy about this.
Especially why it is sending IE usage history to swapdrive.
Which has its ip address associated with a private LLC in Arlington VA, called Webdatagoup.



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:08 PM
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In anything like this, it's best to get the details. The more the better. It's almost worth putting a computer together for the purpose of running the .exe, seeing and tracking what it does.

[edit on 10-3-2009 by saint4God]



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:10 PM
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I know wiki isn't the most credible of sources, but check it out.

en.wikipedia.org...(software)#Symantec.2C_Norton_AntiVirus_Products



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:13 PM
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reply to post by djzombie
 


Spokesmen for the FBI soon confirmed the existence of a program called Magic Lantern. They denied that it had been deployed, and they declined to comment further.[5]

^ Article in the Village Voice, 24 May 2002

Symantec and Norton AntiVirus products have also received criticism from within the anti-virus industry as well. Marc Maiffret, chief technology officer and cofounder of eEye Digital Security- producer of Blink Personal, has stated: "Our customers are paying us for a service, to protect them from all forms of malicious code. It is not up to us to do law enforcement's job for them so we do not, and will not, make any exceptions for law enforcement malware or other tools."


Yah so stop propagating fear.



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:15 PM
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Originally posted by unknown known
Marc Maiffret, chief technology officer and cofounder of eEye Digital Security- producer of Blink Personal, has stated: "Our customers are paying us for a service, to protect them from all forms of malicious code. It is not up to us to do law enforcement's job for them so we do not, and will not, make any exceptions for law enforcement malware or other tools."


I asked myself "why would a cofounder make this kind of statement if it were not happening". One could say "money" but if that were the case, wouldn't all AV software companies follow suit? Or have they and I'm just not aware.



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:15 PM
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reply to post by djzombie
 


His 2nd point is invalid though.
As someone else posted the padding occurs in specific processes during compiling as well.

The days of the week being present in the file? Give me a break.
Open any regular .exe file in a Hex-Editor and Search for: Monday.


EDIT: Just in case you can't find any .exe files
Example: psexec.exe (SysInternals) a tool for executing commands in DOS.

As for your last post djzombie, you borked the link:

Magic Lantern & Norton Antivirus (wikipedia)

[edit on 10/3/09 by -0mega-]



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:25 PM
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I have used Norton AV on a dos boot disk when I was still gaming on a nice Intel 80386.


In the beginning they were one of the best, but commercial interest has made it in my opinion the most corrupted and worst AV software company.

they had to merge with other companies to stay operational.

I tried windows versions, but the resources the crap they write and dare to call software take are just too much for a simple AV.

so this thread doesn't surprise me, since they are indeed govt friends.

I hope this stupidity will bring them down to rockbottom where they belong.



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:30 PM
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There has been activity in the Norton User Forum related to PIFTS.exe which has generated additional concern and media speculation. At approximately 10:30pmET Monday March 9, Symantec detected that our User Forum boards were being abused by an individual or individuals. One individual created a new user account and posted about the name of the patch executable, PIFTS.exe. Within minutes, several dozen user accounts were created commenting on the initial thread, and/or creating new threads on the topic. Over the next few hours, over 200 user accounts were created. Within the first hour there were 600 new posts on this subject alone.

Source

I do not agree with the timeline that Norton has put out with regards to when their forums began to be flooded with PIFTS.exe spam. I posted my question regarding PIFTS.exe at appoximately 247am central time US. At the that time there were no threads regarding the subject. My thread was deleted within minutes with the the only reply being a warning from other users that Norton was deleting all PIFTS.exe related threads.

To my knowledge the spamming of their forums did not occur until this morning.

I was told in a call with their (Norton's) customer service last night (after getting passed around for about 45 minutes) that PIFTS.exe was in fact an update, but they would not/could not give me any more info.

I don't understand why it took them until this afternoon to release a statement if they obviously knew that it was an update last night. Norton deleting valid threads (before the spamming) regarding the subject is also puzzling.

I'm curious as to what the update was actually for? I don't believe that they released that information yet



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:34 PM
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Found it after dissectiong pifts.exe, the yellow circle is the destination IP , IP embeded in the "thing"





Like other quislings and collaborators of the past, McAfee, largest anti-virus software producer in the world, sniveled up to the federal police and simpered that they would take steps to ensure their software didn't alert you that you had been infected by the FBI



self explanatory





[edit on 10-3-2009 by OTTOKARMA]



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:34 PM
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reply to post by zephyrs
 


They should just come clean and admit they were doing a military coup inside their client's computers. I mean, what harm could it do to their business? The Internet would be secure when you're only free to browse what they let you...

Security is becoming a dirty word.



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:40 PM
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Someone needs to install this thing on a fresh computer or even a virtual machine with some software that can show a change log. Then connect it to the internet or at least make it think it is and use a packet sniffer like wireshark to inspect the data inside packets being sent by it. One hitch I thought of is it could use an encrypted communication channel



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:42 PM
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reply to post by Zepherian
 



No, what I said is that untill a definitive account is on the table the conspiracy theory is valid. I'm not saying the the conspiracy is real, it is mearly a framework for investigation.

In short, there is a difference between speculating and knowing. I speculate that the conspiracy is the reality, but I don't know it is at this point. Untill a more solid explanation is on the table my speculation is valid. An opinion is not an account.


What do you need big guy...

A signed confession by the CEO of Symantec?




posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:42 PM
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I see this:
www.sophos.com...

"The file PIFTS.EXE is about 100k in size, so it would take some time to analyse in detail. However, we feel fairly comfortable in debunking the internet rumours claiming that PIFTS might be a rootkit or government-sponsored backdoor to spy on the masses.
...

Our guess is that PIFTS is some kind of feedback component designed to gather statistics about Symantec's products, or an auto-update component.

If we find out any more we'll let you know"



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:43 PM
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First I need a copy of the file that was installed. None of the norton machines I have access to have this file.

Any verifiable links to the file, that are not viruses / trojans.



posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 04:44 PM
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reply to post by Gemwolf
 


I've been in PCs for 30 years and have seen the virus ware develop and entropy since.

Most of the code is too expensive to completely re-write, so they use a lot of old code under the new code. Standard profit models do not account for real and constant upgrades. Engineers are 1-200$ an hour! So the software gets heavy, uses older, heavier and slower code and takes more resources.

10 years ago it started getting bad. Some of the versions of Norton where worse than the viruses the way they degraded system performance. MacAffee is just as bad.

They both add so much crap with affinity and sales related, monitoring and hard to remove from the registry junk that the cure is worse than most the attacks.

If viruses, spyware and Trojans where that intrusive, we would all be using Abacuses and slide rules now.


I have used AVG for several years, and on machines I cannot afford the "protection" money I use Avast. These are (or started out) eastern European publishers, so you need to be aware in any case, but they have for the most part been unobtrusive and have not filled my system with slow crap-filled code. AVG has been the best, but they are all expenses that yearly hit us hard for renewals.


Remember the thugs on the street who ask for protection money so others or themselves won't rob you? That is how I feel about this industry. Remember I have seen this grow from nothing.

It seems to me, if our water was managed like the internet providers, that sludge would be coming out of our faucets and we would have to pay for filtering devices to make it potable.

(As it is I have used RevOzmosis for 20 years for my water anyway. Floride poisoning anyone?)

Malicious code now will pop up on websites saying you have a Virus or Trojan. The code is injected into the sites html, so in most cases the site is unaware. These popups will either inject a virus or a Trojan and you will not even know it.

NEVER give access to these popups! Go to your virus software and update from the software, not out of the dirty pipes of the internet.

If you agree to let it in, your virusware will allow it in many cases. You opened the door and you invited it in and held the dog back even though it was barking.


I am convinced a war is possible in cyberspace with army's of Chinese, Korean, Russian or any government powered counter intelligence programs creating code to bring down networks or destroy them in concentrated attacks. Anything attached to the web is in danger.

I'm waiting for Washington to get their heads out of their butts and fix this without intruding into our freedoms. Maybe the Obama administration has a clue.

In any case, it is up to us to watch and warn.

Thanks for the heads up for us all.


ZG

[edit on 3/10/2009 by ZeroGhost]



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