A group of leading security firms has proposed a new standardised system for testing security software.
Symantec, McAfee, F-Secure and Kaspersky are among the names that have pledged support for the project, which boasts more than 40 security vendors and media groups as part of the Anti-Malware Testing Standards Organization.
The new system would provide guidelines as to how a test should be conducted, including the types of malware used, method of analysis and accurate support for a conclusion.
The guidelines will also outline procedures for studying and disclosing new malware samples.
Security vendors and experts have long called for an updated standard for testing. Current security tests, such as the Virus Bulletin 100 system, have been criticised for their procedures and what some say is an inability accurately to access certain types of anti-malware programs.
The new group hopes that its outlines will allow security firms and independent testing groups to research the effectiveness of anti-malware solutions with better accuracy and a built-in neutrality.
"While there have been many great security software reviews in the past, many poor reviews have confused or misled people," said McAfee senior vice president Jeff Green.
"This is a significant milestone that should skew the balance towards fair and scientific testing, providing users with a true viewpoint on the security protection vendors provide."
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