Malicious programming on the Internet and in wireless communications is effective because those systems are open and accessible at the endpoints. Criminals take advantage of opportunities to automate anonymous communications that deceive unwary consumers and illegally access unprotected endpoints. Attacks are made on both the front and the backends of consumer and business assets. These delinquent developers are looking to steal information that can be used to defraud banking security or sold to organizations that engage in identity theft. Cloud Anti-Virus programming makes this effort more difficult to accomplish and thereby more expensive.
Attacks on the endpoints are easier to execute than assaults on the cloud community in the middle. This is due to the fact that the technology behind the virtualization of communications is dynamically distributed. When a customer goes online, no one company’s infrastructure is employed in doing all of the work for any given transaction. The various tasks of connecting, transmitting, authenticating, authorizing, replying, relaying, responding, transferring, and disconnecting are shared among several companies with the capabilities to service each other’s subscribers or their customers’ clientele.
Cloud virus protection works by using a gatekeeper application preprocessor installed on one endpoint to detect suspicious activities. The gatekeeper program is called the Host Agent. Suspiciously coded files originate from some camouflaged source and are typically set to transmit whatever they are able to illegally obtain to some obscured third-party endpoint. The gatekeeper may detect these known patterns of illicit activity or it may use sophisticated probability testing to deduct irregularities in the execution instructions of newly acquired files to trigger the detection of malware.
Once a possibility of improper activities, such as requests for administrative control or elevation of the rights of a system resource required for overriding defaults or custom configured settings, are detected; that Host Agent issues a stop all activities command and connects to the nearest network service providers that participate in the cloud anti-virus programming which the consumer has subscribed to. The plural form of the cloud-designated ‘providers’ terminology is a key consideration for understanding what happens next.
No one cloud participant is performing the entire work related to determining the level of threat at the endpoint layer from the activity reported by the Host Agent. Each service point in the cloud anti-virus community analyzes and directs further activity based on the resources it has available in its individual inventory of detection resources. This results in multiple simultaneous and nearly concurrent investigations of the Host Agent’s communication which may contain a copy of the suspect file.
Much in the same way that the consumer’s frontend endpoints differ in their configurations, so too do the cloud anti-virus network service participants’ configurations vary. Their virtuosity is a mixture of preferences and prioritizations that ensure that the reported file will be examined multiple times from various perspectives that address the scope of known malware vulnerabilities and attack vectors.
Like all other programs, some cloud anti-virus programming developers produce products that are more effective in some respect than that of their competitors. Efficiency in a virtual environment can’t be accurately measured by strictly applied detection rates rules because different methods of deployment by various cloud anti-virus service participants shape endpoint results regionally.
For example: In highly populated urban areas where there are large populations of information workers, there are correspondingly greater numbers of participating cloud anti-virus service providers. More participation increases the redundant examination count and the diversified methods employed. This translated into a higher probability of detection.
User preference and tolerances also play a role in successful detections and remedies. A performance hit at the front occurs on the occurrence of the Host Agent’s stop command. In underserved communities, the severity and duration of this processing delay may cause the user at the front end to abandon the detection process prematurely. This kind of degraded performance will be less dramatic in more sophisticated communities.
What the common consumer or typical business person should accept is that all information technologies come with implied if not fully qualified operator caveats. Once you consider the limitation on what can be done and where that applies in terms of cloud computing and anti-virus programming, the best cloud antivirus solution for your circumstance becomes easier to determine.