Five Minutes with Tarek Kuzbari from Kaspersky

By on June 23, 2010
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“Some of the most vulnerable applications that criminals are using [to launch their attacks] are Adobe applications”


Kaspersky launched their Internet Security 2011 and Anti-Virus 2011 at the posh Armani hotel in Dubai yesterday. One of the good features about Kaspersky is their “Safe” mode that coule be used on the web or on your dekstop. Safe Surf and Safe Run means you run in a protected “sandbox” without being able to affect the rest of your Windows installation. Basically what you have is another Windows desktop within which everything is safe from affect the other parts of Windows.

We got a chance to sit down with Tarek Kuzbari, Managing Director, Kaspersky Labs Middle East and discuss their new products as well as Internet Security as whole. The following are excerpts from that interview

Tarek Kuzbari, Managing Director, Kaspersky Labs Middle East

Could you tell us more about the latest version of Kaspersky 2011? What differentiates you from you competitor?

Today we are launching two of our flagship products: Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2011 and Kaspersky Internet Security 2011. Its a challenge to continue the success we have achieved with the earlier products of 2010. We have invested a lot in these products in order to enhance it in different aspects.

First of all, we have enhanced the interface to make it easier and more readable for our users. Our products are used by young people as well as old people so we wanted to make it as easy and simple as possible. Besides that, we have improved upon most of the technologies that were included in 2010 line up.

So right now we are providing complete protection for our users though the Kaspersky Internet Security and we are trying to be one year ahead of the malware writers in order to provide protection to the users. In terms of functionality, we have improved the parental control functionality – we have doubled the possibilities and the control for parents that provide more security for their children. We have also improved the sandbox technology and moved it into more of a virtual desktop to provide a more controlled and safe environment for running applications.

With the operating systems becoming more secure, like Microsoft claims that Windows 7 is the most secure operating system they have ever built, do you see the need for an anti-virus applications in the years ahead?

Yes, definitely. The operating systems are becoming more secure but malware writers are becoming more sophisticated and accurate in their target attacks as well. If you notice the attacks happening within the last year, it wasn’t mainly targeting the operating system but also the applications. In our report, we showed that some of the most vulnerable applications that criminals are using [to launch their attacks] are Adobe applications. So, using the Flash player for example, on your Windows or Linux operating systems, the cyber criminals are able to target you just because you are using a vulnerable application.

That’s why when we talk about security- it’s not only about the operating systems, it’s not only about the applications, it’s not only about using the security product. You need to use legal products to be able to update these products that close holes. Also, you have to educate the users, because whatever environment you have, whatever security you have, an uninformed user will create a hole in the system. So this is what we are trying to do- enable the users by providing leading security applications, and try to communicate with the customers and media with such events to spread as much awareness as possible.

You just mentioned that Flash Player running on Windows or Linux will cause a problem; however, you don’t have a Linux version of your product.

We already have the Linux Protection on the Workstation levels because we still see that most the Linux users are mainly using the business environment, but we are definitely planning on the consumer level as well.

Last question- why is the product called 2011 when we are not even half way through 2010?

Because we are one year ahead from our competitors, malware writers, and the latest cyber threats!


Abbas Jaffar Ali is the founder of and a blogger, geek and self-declared tech pundit who can't stop talking about technology. Find him on twitter as @ajaffarali

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