BitDefender acknowledges anti-virus debacle

BitDefender has acknowledged that its anti-virus software update may have caused the crash of an unspecified number of 64-bit Windows machines.

“Due to a recent update it is possible that BitDefender detects several Windows and BitDefender files as infected with Trojan.FakeAlert.5,” the company confirmed in an official statement.

According to Network World, the acknowledgement was prompted by numerous complaints which flooded forums on Saturday with tales of BitDefender woe.

“EVERY file that is trying to run is getting quarantined,” reported one user named lhmathys. 

“Windows Explorer and even Bitdefender update itself is being quarantined. Someone really screwed this one up.”

Another user identified as Ufitec expressed similar sentiments.

“We are in a really terrible position now. We have 150 business clients and most of the pcs [on] which BitDefender thinks everything is virus does not boot any more!!!!”

Meanwhile, BitDefender claimed that it has released a fix for the problem and offered instructions on how to repair the damage.

“We understand your disappointment, we have solved the problem for many of our users already and we are continuing to work relentlessly to rectify the problem for all users still affected.

“Yesterday around 8:20am PST, an update that we were working on was uploaded prematurely in our servers. This update affected only products running on Windows 64-bit systems. The update affected some of our home user product line as well as BitDefender Business Client and BitDefender Security for File Servers. Certain BitDefender and Windows files have been detected as Trojan.FakeAlert.5 and have been moved to quarantine.

“Only exe ,dll and other binary files have been quarantined (no pictures or documents). Consequently, for some systems, BitDefender did not run anymore, applications did not work or Windows could not start. By 11am PST, our team had reversed the faulty update so no additional users would be affected.

“Of those affected, we believe that only a fraction were not able to apply the new update, and from those many have already been assisted. We continue to support those of our users who currently require further assistance. Our teams are working around the clock to minimize the impact, including one-on-one support to fix the issue as quickly as possible.”