Customer support for the Spy Sweeper (Webroot) is truly abysmal.

Discussion in 'other anti-malware software' started by Fly, Feb 13, 2008.

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  1. Fly

    Fly Registered Member

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    The title says it pretty much.

    Too many people say that the program is essentially worthless or worse.

    I don't agree, it still has some good features.

    As for customer support, they use automated answers/robots. For the most common and easy answers that are not covered you may still get a decent answer by a human being.

    My latest customer support experience was abysmal.

    In the 'ticket' (if they call it that way) I received a 'personal' answer with a 'solution' that had absolutely nothing to do with the question. Then they closed the ticket without even informing me. I would usually get a response by email, but not this time.

    They seem to be updating their definition file, and the latest upgrade to version 5.5.7 (without antivirus) seemed to be an improvement from a security point of view. Although I had to customize some things, the 'full sweep' doesn't even scan for rootkits !

    Customer support used to be good. I'm not sure where things are heading for now. You probably can't blame support personell, I presume the management should be held accountable for things like this.

    Still, some other popular programs on this forum deserve serious criticism as well. I state that to put this in perspective.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2008
  2. Webroot

    Webroot Registered Member

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    My name is Jeremy, I am a supervisor with Webroot Software technical support. I am sorry to hear of the issues you had with our technical support previously. I would like to assist you with any needs you may have with our software as well as answer any questions in which you need further information. If you could provide for me in a private message your direct email address I can assist you further directly to get any issue resolved or question answered. Thank you for your time.
     
  3. Fly

    Fly Registered Member

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    This gets your attention ? :D

    It wasn't a very important question, but over the years (technical) customer support has deteriorated more than a bit. And in this case, the answer to my question was not even remotely relevant, and then the ticket was closed, without even contacting me by email. But I checked in on my own, and found out what happened ...

    As I stated, if someone were to be held responsible it would be management, not the support staff.

    I won't bother to send you a private message, but you can answer the question here if you like. It was a question about the file system shield. By default, only files with certain extensions are scanned. There is an option to scan all files. I just found it strange that no .dll or .exe files were in the list, and asked something like: are some important files/extensions not scanned ? What would be the impact on performance/speed/resources if I would select 'all files'. Maybe this is in a way a silly question, but I'm not an expert.
     
  4. Fly

    Fly Registered Member

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    and: I use the Spy Sweeper WITHOUT antivirus.
     
  5. Webroot

    Webroot Registered Member

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    The File System shield monitors the selected files when they are opened or in use. Depending on your systems available resources, selecting the ability to scan all files or file extensions can impede your performance, which is why this particular setting is one that we allow the user to customize if they wish to do so. This is a preventative shield that is built into the software, however when you perform a sweep, the definitions of Spy Sweeper are designed to scan individual .dll and .exe files during the sweep process, and also serve as another form of ensuring they are not malicious in themselves or have any hidden malicious intent.

    If you have any further questions, please let me know.
     
  6. daniel2007

    daniel2007 Registered Member

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    hello mr. webroot,

    i am a 3 year subscriber and still consider SS one of the most important components of my security profile, but i do have issues with your "hit list."

    daily i must have at least one other program (usually CA-antispy) do a manual sweep to remove the several remaining tracking cookies that SS never catches. it's the same ones day after day.

    granted, SS does kill all of the more serious intruders but if webroot would only have an "add this one too" feature, it really would be a one-stop product. when i posted this question to tech support i was told something like "we define spyware according to our own standards...."

    how is it that a known tracking cookie to CA and ZoneAlarm is not so for SS ?

    ~daniel~
    ps. anyone that does not respect SS should take a stroll through "warzecracks.ru" territory sometime. it is truly amazing how quickly and thoroughally protected my machine was.

    pps. please bring back the click sound when something is being removed (or at least make it optional). otherwise i have no way of knowing that it is working than by scanning the session log.
     
  7. ejames82

    ejames82 Registered Member

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    i had spy sweeper, but it conflicted with kaspersky, so i had to use spy sweeper as an on-demand scan. it's a great on-demand scan, and always removed what it found. some real nasties.
    since it was only being used on-demand, it needed to be manually updated. unfortunately the corporation decided that the need to sell me their antivirus was more important than my convenience, because when i clicked on "update", their "purchase spy sweeper with antivirus" window would block the view so i could not see if the update was taking place in the progress bar. there is a technical term for that kind of tactic, "nagware".
    i admit that the folks that talk to you on the phone were great, but the corporation started doing sleazy things, so i don't want the programme anymore.
     
  8. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

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    Hi and welcome Mr Webroot.

    I just wanted to remark positively in favor of your long standing run of Window Washer.

    It's been a Remarkable cleaner that the lab seems to have put a lot of thought and effort into,

    Regards

    EASTER
     
  9. avboy

    avboy Registered Member

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    Hello,

    I had to manually enable (tick) next to tracking cookies in options. Since then it was detecting tracking cookies perfectly. However now I have disabled it again as it was conflicting with ZASS. Made it an on-demand scanner.

    avboy
     
  10. avboy

    avboy Registered Member

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    hello,

    it conflicts with ZASS too, if it is resident. Now I use it as on-demand scanner.
    As for the update, I do it manually too. But all the "buy this, buy that" come in a separate window, and does not block updates screen for me. I am using 5.5.
    One nagging feature is that it runs webroot.exe even if I do not start webroot! Why is this required in the first place?
     
  11. ejames82

    ejames82 Registered Member

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    avboy,

    isn't zass kaspersky av?

    i don't remember which version i had, but it did me.

    you may be able to change that with a combination of the GUI, msconfig, and task manager.

    they want it to load at bootup.
     
  12. daniel2007

    daniel2007 Registered Member

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    hi avboy,
    yes, i have that option enabled but without fail, tonight i will remove: com.com, co.uk, partners2profit.com, iseesports.tv, mail.ru, hitbox.com, fastclick.com, euroclick.com, webtrends.com, etc. CA-Antispy catches these every single time; SS misses them every single time. Or is it $$ that misses them....
     
  13. avboy

    avboy Registered Member

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    True. But their spyware engine is not. I got a conflict even with the AV turned off. Even now when I use it as on-demand, I stop ZASS antispy resident. Moreover read somewhere that in real time both try to read tracking cookies and end up doing nothing or sometimes blocking each other

    The question is not how to change it. Yes and they may want to see at what time everyday i switch on my PC, go to which sites and what I do and even more. That's besides the point. But when I specify that I dont want it to start with windows, it still does at the background without loading the splash and the GUI.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2008
  14. avboy

    avboy Registered Member

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    Hey daniel2007, can you be more specific. Are you referring to Window Washer? AFAIK Spysweeper just inspects the cookies (including tracking cookies) and tells whether there is any malware or not. It does not remove them. Or have I missed some feature?
     
  15. daniel2007

    daniel2007 Registered Member

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    Hi Avboy,

    Yes, you are missing the actual removal (assuming you have the "shields" set properly).

    Go to 'Options" and at the bottom left you should see 'view session log' and scroll around.

    Mine removes many actual tracking cookies that are also listed in the 'options - always apply' tab. Make sure you have those selected to 'always quarantine' - that's the limited blacklist i was referring to. I want to add my own frequent offenders that get picked up by CA.

    According to CA, the ones it gets are rated 'low' risk (whatever that means), but regardless, SS never catches any of them. What are we paying for o_O

    Did you find the log ?

    ~d~
     
  16. TopperID

    TopperID Registered Member

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    It seems to me you are not taking best advantage of ZAP, which you are running. If you would just get in the habit of using the Cache cleaner in the Privacy section you would not need to waste effort scanning for Cookies. Most of the good AS programs treat Cookies as low priority because they are not a threat and thus don't attempt to find them all.

    Similarly, proper use of the Mobile Code Control in ZAP's privacy section (including .js) would all but blot out exploits of the kind you refer to, leaving it more or less unnecessary to run SS realtime at all.
     
  17. fax

    fax Registered Member

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    Hi!
    please note that ZASS has two spyware engines.
    One by Kaspersky (its the 'extended database' active by default in the advance settings of the antivirus/antispyware tab) and ZA AS (internally developed).

    Using SS on top of ZASS is a waste of resources and not really necessary. If you are concerned by spyware you can use other 'on demand' tools that are free, better and less instrusive than SS (e.g. superantispyware).

    A full use of ZA privacy features in ZASS will indeed prevent most (if not all) drive-by-download malware via the browser.

    Cheers,
    Fax
     
  18. daniel2007

    daniel2007 Registered Member

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    Two thoughts:
    1) i do use ZAPro (not ZASS) cache cleaner at the END of my online sessions but have not tested this in sequence - end, clean cache, CA cookie sweep. It's usually CA sweep, cache clean.
    2) initially, i used ZAP and SS for different reasons though now i see that most of what SS does is also covered in ZAP. Keep in mind that SS kills/blocks most malware in "real time" - before they hit the disk. Do these free progs do that ? None that i have do.
     
  19. daniel2007

    daniel2007 Registered Member

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    topperis,
    A problem with blocking js is that yahoo home page has it for user's "modules" - mail preview, advanced weather, news, video features. I have been experimenting with ZAP Sites feature to block individual addresses and kill js that presents advertisements. It works but can also block some home page modules as well. More tinkering and fine tuning should work. Use "View Source" to find addresses and then add to Sites. The fun just never ends.
     
  20. Fly

    Fly Registered Member

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    Mr. Webroot,

    A long time ago someone from Webroot's support staff told me that the Spy Sweeper catches some trojans, but that to catch other trojans an antivirus was needed. Is this still the case ? And do you make a distinction between banking viruses and spyware ?
     
  21. TopperID

    TopperID Registered Member

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    You do need to allow .js for safe surfing sites, indeed for trusted sites you may need to allow Active X to run Flash etc. But if you are going to unknown or risky sites, just get into the habit of battening down the hatches.
     
  22. avboy

    avboy Registered Member

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    hi daniel2007, sorry I couldn't reply earlier as I was dealing with a crash (SMPS problem). Found the log, thanks. However after hearing you, I have entrusted cookie scanning to ZASS and removal to a cleaner (use both CC and Easy). Moreover I have set Firefox to clear cookies when closed.
     
  23. avboy

    avboy Registered Member

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    Thanks fax for the info.
     
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