Antivirus

Pfizer has already run into coronavirus vaccine manufacturing issues

Pfizer was forced to cut its coronavirus vaccine production in half due to unforeseen manufacturing issues. Pfizer will ship 50 million doses worldwide in 2020 instead of 100 million. The company aims to produce more than 1 billion doses in 2021, as initially planned. The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine regimen requires two separate shots, administered a few…

Pfizer was forced to cut its coronavirus vaccine production in half due to unforeseen manufacturing issues.
Pfizer will ship 50 million doses worldwide in 2020 instead of 100 million. The company aims to produce more than 1 billion doses in 2021, as initially planned.
The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine regimen requires two separate shots, administered a few weeks apart.

“There are three key areas where, as with all vaccines, we must demonstrate success in order to seek approval for public use,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla wrote in a public letter in mid-March. “First, the vaccine must be proven effective, meaning it can help prevent COVID-19 disease in at least a majority of vaccinated patients. Second and equally important, the vaccine must be proven safe, with robust safety data generated from thousands of patients. And finally, we must demonstrate that the vaccine can be consistently manufactured at the highest quality standards.”

Since then, Pfizer and BioNTech have announced that the drug is highly effective against COVID-19, reaching 95% efficacy in the clinical trial’s Phase 3 stage. The vaccine is also safe, as volunteers only experienced transitory side-effects during the trial. And Pfizer must have demonstrated success at manufacturing the drug safely, as the two companies have already submitted the paperwork for emergency approvals. The UK already approved the vaccine for use, with vaccinations set to start soon. But Pfizer ran into some manufacturing issues and had to revise its estimates for the supply available worldwide in 2020.

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“Scaling up the raw material supply chain took longer than expected,” a company spokeswoman told The Wall Street Journal. “And it’s important to highlight that the outcome of the clinical trial was somewhat later than the initial projection.”

Pfizer still aims to ship more than a billion doses in 2021 as it was originally planned. But the company will only make 50 million doses this year, half of the initial projection. This would be enough to vaccinate 25 million people, as the drug requires two doses a few weeks apart.

It’s unclear what caused the delay, and Pfizer did not explain the issue. “We were late,” a person familiar with the development process told WSJ. “Some early batches of the raw materials failed to meet the standards. We fixed it but ran out of time to meet this year’s projected shipments.”

Pfizer wouldn’t detail the shortfalls over ingredients. The report notes that vaccines typically contain “materials from suppliers that can include antivirus agents, antiseptic liquids, sterile water,” and the virus elements that would trigger an immune response without triggering the illness. In the case of this mRNA vaccine, the spike protein of the real SARS-CoV-2 virus is used in the vaccine so that the body can develop neutralizing antibodies to it.

Usually, a pharmaceutical company would start manufacturing the experimental drug only once it’s approved. That includes purchasing the raw materials and setting up the manufacturing lines and supply chains. However, Pfizer started months ago, even with no guarantee that the vaccine would work and reach the emergency use milestone.

“For this one, everything happened simultaneously,” the person familiar with Pfizer’s development process said. “We started setting up the supply chain in March, while the vaccine was still being developed. That’s totally unprecedented.”

Pfizer’s delay might be seen as a bad sign, but it’s also good news, signaling that companies will not cut safety corners. Regulators will continue to monitor the safety of coronavirus vaccines as well. Earlier this week, the head of the UK drug regulator said that batches of the vaccine would be tested in labs as vaccination campaigns begin, “so that every single vaccine that goes out meets the same high standards of safety.”
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Antivirus

G Data Total Security review: The best antivirus app you’ve never heard of

Nothing says security and trust like German quality. At least that’s the pitch for Germany-based G Data. The company’s tag line is “Trust in German Sicherheit (safety).” The idea being that modern Germany is known for “solid German quality” and strict privacy laws, which G Data must adhere to, thereby shielding its customers from malware…

Nothing says security and trust like German quality. At least that’s the pitch for Germany-based G Data. The company’s tag line is “Trust in German Sicherheit (safety).” The idea being that modern Germany is known for “solid German quality” and strict privacy laws, which G Data must adhere to, thereby shielding its customers from malware and privacy-busting breaches.Besides the German-ness, G Data has a long history in antivirus protection, and its current AV product relies on not one, but two detection engines (Bitdefender and an in-house engine). Note: This review is part of our best antivirus roundup. Go there for details about competing products and how we tested them.
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G Data Total Security uses two malware engines.To read this article in full, please click here
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Antivirus

Norton AntiVirus Plus: what is it and what’s included?

Norton is well known as one of the top antivirus brands available, with a wide range of products and services to suit differing needs and budgets. In this article, we’ll go over the many features of Norton’s entry-level antivirus package, Norton AntiVirus Plus, including what devices it can be used on.We’ll also look at how…

Norton is well known as one of the top antivirus brands available, with a wide range of products and services to suit differing needs and budgets. In this article, we’ll go over the many features of Norton’s entry-level antivirus package, Norton AntiVirus Plus, including what devices it can be used on.

We’ll also look at how Norton AntiVirus Plus compares to the company’s other internet security suites to help you decide which security solution is right for you. 

  • Discover more about AntiVirus Plus by heading to the Norton website
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What is Norton AntiVirus Plus?

Norton AntiVirus Plus is the most basic of Norton’s antivirus offerings. The Norton 360 suite comes with more bells and whistles, such as access to a VPN, dark web monitoring and the ability to block unauthorized webcam access on a PC. Norton 360 Deluxe enables users to protect up to five devices, while Norton 360 with LifeLock Select adds increased identity theft protection, such as credit monitoring.

As the most basic Norton security option, Norton AntiVirus Plus is also the most affordable – about half the cost of Norton 360 Deluxe.

Our dedicated guide on Norton plans will help you choose between the three.

What devices can I use Norton AntiVirus Plus on?

Norton Antivirus Plus can be used on a Mac or PC, but it only provides support to one computer. If you’re looking to protect multiple computers in a household, you’ll need to purchase a Norton AntiVirus Plus license for each individually or, much more sensibly, upgrade to Norton 360 Deluxe. 

Norton AntiVirus Plus is not compatible with smartphones or tablets. 

Norton AntiVirus Plus Interface

(Image credit: Symantec)

Norton AntiVirus Plus: what features does it have?

Norton AntiVirus Plus comes with the standard features of an entry-level antivirus package, as well as quite a few extras:

Antivirus scanning

Norton AntiVirus Plus enables you to scan your computer for malware, spyware, ransomware, and viruses. It offers a Quick Scan option or a comprehensive Full System Scan, as well as the ability to scan custom locations to find and remove threats.

Online protection

Norton AntiVirus Plus detects and blocks malicious URLs, keeping you secure when browsing online. While Norton’s Safe Web browser extension is available for free, Norton AntiVirus Plus will also protect you from malicious links system-wide, such as in PDFs.

Smart firewall

Norton AntiVirus Plus’s Smart Firewall feature helps prevent unwanted access to your files by alerting you whenever a suspicious program is attempting to connect to the internet.

Password manager

Re-using the same weak passwords can pose a huge security risk. Norton AntiVirus Plus offers a password manager that enables you to create unique, strong passwords for each of your accounts without having to remember them all.

Cloud backup

Norton AntiVirus Plus comes with 2GB of cloud storage to back up important files in case of a ransomware attack. You can schedule backups to the cloud to run automatically, or you can manually run a backup whenever you please. You can also choose the files and folders that are backed up. 2GB isn’t much storage, but the feature also enables you to back up files to a local drive.

Virus protection promise

If your device does become infected with a virus while running Norton AntiVirus Plus, you may be eligible for a refund.

How good is Norton AntiVirus Plus?

Norton AntiVirus Plus is a solid choice for anyone looking to secure their computer and easily earns its place among our top rated Windows 10 antivirus programmes.

Even though Norton AntiVirus Plus is the least advanced of Norton’s offerings, it comes with plenty of extra features, like the Smart Firewall and the ability to back up files to the cloud or a local drive. And as the cheapest Norton plan, it’s good value.

However, all those features make the Norton AntiVirus Plus interface a bit confusing to navigate. It might take some adjustment before you are able to easily find the features you’re looking for.

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BrandPost: Ransomware Response in Four Steps

During 2020, the first year in almost a decade that saw businesses cut their IT and security budgets, the global ransomware threat grew even stronger. Now, in 2021, companies are more likely than ever to learn their defenses have been breached by a ransomware gang.If your company becomes a victim, you’ll have to address defense…

During 2020, the first year in almost a decade that saw businesses cut their IT and security budgets, the global ransomware threat grew even stronger. Now, in 2021, companies are more likely than ever to learn their defenses have been breached by a ransomware gang.If your company becomes a victim, you’ll have to address defense and prevention quickly. Here are the four steps your team must follow:Contain the incidentFirst, minimize the damage. The moment your security team is alerted to ransomware on a computer inside your network perimeter, they must isolate that computer from the network. That done, they should look through logs from your antivirus, firewall, and EDR solutions to see if any other devices were hit, and immediately isolate those as well. They should physically disconnect them from the network as well. The speed of this process is crucial: The faster the reaction, the more of your company’s infrastructure and data you can save.To read this article in full, please click here
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AVG Internet Security review: A budget-friendly antivirus suite with reliable protection

AVG has a big advantage in the free antivirus space since it owns both Avast (acquired in 2016) and its homegrown product, AVG Free. The hope is that you’ll love the free stuff so much that you’ll eventually upgrade to one of its paid products.In the case of AVG, most people opt for its Internet…

AVG has a big advantage in the free antivirus space since it owns both Avast (acquired in 2016) and its homegrown product, AVG Free. The hope is that you’ll love the free stuff so much that you’ll eventually upgrade to one of its paid products.In the case of AVG, most people opt for its Internet Security program. Priced just under $45 for 10 devices for the first year, it’s one step down from the company’s flagship product, AVG Ultimate. Internet Security lacks a number of Ultimate’s less crucial features. For example, you don’t get AVG’s PC tune-up package or free access to its add-on VPN. As far as tune-ups go, you can find free programs or use Windows 10’s built-in tools to deal with common issues such as dumping cached folders that take up space, or monitoring third-party software updates. The important security features, however, are all included in Internet Security, such as the antivirus, firewall, and phishing protection. AVG doesn’t include a password manager as part of its various security packages.To read this article in full, please click here
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