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Scanning possible infected files


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#1 scff249

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 10:00 AM

I know there are a few sites out there to scan files such as VirusTotal and Jotti, but there's a question regarding this. Is it possible to scan files that's in a quarantine? There's one particular file that I have that I'm guessing is a false positive since it came from one of my programs that I constantly use. I wasn't ever infected or anything, but I'm just wondering since I have a possible false positive that Avast detected as a threat and put into the quarantine.

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#2 quietman7

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 02:06 PM

When an anti-virus or security program quarantines a file and moves it into a virus vault (chest) or a dedicated quarantine folder, that file is essentially disabled and prevented from causing any harm to your system. The quarantined file is usually renamed before moving, safely held there and no longer a threat until you take action to delete it. One reason for doing this is to prevent deletion of a crucial file that may have been flagged as a "false positive" especially if the scanner uses heuristic analysis technology. Heuristics is the ability of a scanning program to detect possible new variants of malware before the vendor can get samples and update the program's definitions for detection. Heuristics uses non-specific detection methods to find new or unknown malware which allows the anti-virus to detect and stop if before doing any harm to your system. The disadvantage to using heuristics is that it is not as reliable as signature-based detection (blacklisting) and can potentially increase the chances that a non-malicious program is flagged as suspicious or infected. If that is the case, then you can restore the file and add it to the exclusion or ignore list.

If you're not sure about the file or suspect it may be a "false detection", check your anti-virus user manual or look for documentation, FAQs on the vendor's web site. Some programs have options for submitting a file from the quarantined area directly to the vendor's lab for analysis. Most user guides will explain how to do that. In summation, Quarantine is just an added safety measure which allows you to view and investigate the files while keeping them from harming your computer. When the quarantined file is known to be malicious, you can delete it at any time by launching the program which removed it, going to the Quarantine tab, and choosing the option to delete.

If you've sent the virus to the ’Virus Chest’ , open the ’Virus Chest’, right-click on the entry for the virus, and select 'Email to AVAST Software'. Alternatively, you can send it in a password-protected zip file to virus@avast.com making sure the password is included in the body of the email.

avast FAQ: How can I submit a new virus to avast?
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