Cyber Security

Cyber Security Startups – Light Point Security, a Beacon of Hope against Malware

May 9, 2014

Phoenix TS Intern

If Symantec is right in saying that anti-virus software is dead, then check out this new and fast moving cyber security company from our hometown of Baltimore.

Light Point Security has taken off since their founding four years ago and haven’t slowed down.

They provide web browsing from a virtual machine in the cloud. Web content and the malware associated with it, never actually reaches yours or an employee’s computer. You’re browsing the web on a completely different computer server with their software. 

Not Your Average Anti-Virus

Two services constitute their business; Light Point Web and Light Point Web Enterprise. Each service enables the users to safely browse the web without the worry of malware, ads, and even cookies attacking your computer. There are several key points to this service that make Light Point Security stand out.

A Virus Free Cloud

Their virtual machine keeps the newest and most advanced malware off your computer. You only experience the “interactive image” of the webpage without the code associated with it. While the term “virus-free” and “cloud” may seem appealing, it leaves out other security concerns.  Light Point Web keeps malware and viruses from ever reaching your computer (it is NOT an anti-virus software), but doesn’t keep you from putting information out there.

Say for instance you want to order the latest tech gadget online. You go to a site, but you spell the url wrong. Now you’re on a phishing site where you can give your information away. The malware may not reached your computer, but now these phishers can steal sensitive personal information from you due to your negligence.

Completely Anonymous

This product makes a point not to monitor you. There are no cookies and your IP address is hidden so no one can follow you.  The phrase “completely anonymous”, however, might also lend users to think that they are 100% safe, 100% of the time, from hackers and the like. This is never true. Having a security program on your computer doesn’t make up for not being knowledgeable about personal internet safety.

Risky Websites, Identity Theft, and Encryption

Through the virtual machine, Light Point Web pegs everything as a threat so it’s kept off of your computer. There’s not a program that guesses what’s safe or harmful. Their specific, one-time encryption keys also make sure that no one can see what site you’re on or your passwords; not even Light Point Security. Additionally, like stated above, your information can’t be reached, but identity theft can still be achieved when someone willingly puts their information on false websites.

Light Point quotes McAfee, saying that “In 2009, McAfee Inc. did a study to try and identify risky websites. The study found that 5.8% of all tested websites were found to be risky…”. That number has increased by at least 70% in 2013 and rose significantly for mobile devices. Their products help keep users safe from malicious sites.

In addition, Light Point Web is great for Internet Explorer and Firefox users, but not for Chrome. Google Chrome uses cookies to track movement from site to site. It’s highly unlikely that this browser will make the list. If you’re worried about cookies tracking you online, there is a simple way of deleting them off of your computer.

Is it better than your current software?

They have great features, but is it not a replacement for anti-virus software. On their website Light Point states that they “recommend using Light Point Web alongside a standard anti-virus product. While Light Point Web can protect you from a malicious website corrupting your computer, it can not stop, detect or remove a threat introduced by other means.”

Other anti-virus software including Norton Internet Security, BitDefender Total Security, Comodo Internet Security Complete (2013), and McAfee can stop, detect, and remove threats.

These 2014 security suites (among many others) involve antivirus, firewall, anti-spam, parental control, phishing, password protection, and social media monitoring. In comparison, Light Point Web/Enterprise doesn’t protect against malware and viruses because they don’t have to. The interactive image of the webpage keeps the dangers of the internet off of your computer to begin with. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t install an anti-virus suite.

To answer the questions: No. If you haven’t had any problems with your current software, there’s no need to change. If you want something for extra security, especially for brand-new malware, Light Point Web could be an addition to your computer security.

As a general tip, you should always do your research (from several sources) on security software before deciding whats’s best for your needs.

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