Author Topic: Safe to update Avast on an unprotected WiFi connection?  (Read 2210 times)

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DavidMax

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Safe to update Avast on an unprotected WiFi connection?
« on: August 23, 2012, 02:56:57 PM »
I was recently in France and using an open unprotected WiFi connection at McDonalds when Avast said there was a newer version and I should update.

I was unsure of the dangers (if any) of doing this on an open unprotected connection so I waited until I was home.

Was that correctly prudent or over cautious? For instance is Avast secured with certificates or public/private keys that make it safe even on an open connection?

Offline Lisandro

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Re: Safe to update Avast on an unprotected WiFi connection?
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2012, 04:13:58 PM »
Well... I think it was overcautious. But, you went for the safety and, then, a good choice.
The application (update downloaded) is scanned by Google Play in the origin and rescanned by avast! itself you have already installed.
The best things in life are free.

Theo Peterbroers

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Re: Safe to update Avast on an unprotected WiFi connection?
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2012, 04:27:55 PM »
Hi DavidMax,

Nice question. I suppose avast protects against tainted updates at least as good as against any other files that you might download, and likely better. But I can't find confirmation of this in Program Help. Will be looking further.

If I were in McDo's, I would allow signature updates, but disallow program updates. Not so much because of an untrusted connection, but because a program update is much more likely to break things. A program update might be slightly more risky, but most forms of repair would be awkward.

And hey, avast:  "An antivirus program is only as good as its database of virus definitions, which is why it is important to regularly update both the program and the virus definitions." C'mon, you have evolved from a purely dictionary based approach. Quoted text is from Program Help, and yes I don't know how to get heuristics and behaviour analysis in this succinctly either.

Best regards,

Offline igor

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Re: Safe to update Avast on an unprotected WiFi connection?
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2012, 08:56:51 PM »
Yes, all the downloaded packages are signed and the program checks their signatures when it gets them, so it's safe to update even on unsecured connections.