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Symantec: 2006 hacking led to source code theft

Tue, 01/17/2012 - 8:25am
Jim Finkle, Reuters
Symantec Corp, the world's biggest maker of antivirus software, said that hackers breached its networks in 2006, stealing source code to its flagship security programs and three other products.

Unknown hackers obtained the source code, or blueprint for its software, to Norton Antivirus Corporate Edition, Norton Internet Security, Norton Utilities, Norton GoBack and pcAnywhere, company spokesman Cris Paden told Reuters on Tuesday.

The developer of the popular Norton antivirus software said earlier this month that hackers had stolen some of its code from a third party. Last week hackers released the code to a 2006 version of Norton Utilities and have said they planned to release code to its antivirus software on Tuesday.

Symantec had previously said that its own network had not been breached when the source code was taken. But Paden said in an email on Tuesday that an investigation into the matter had revealed that the company's networks had indeed been compromised.

He also said that customers of pcAnywhere, a program that facilitates remote access of PCs, may face "a slightly increased security risk" as a result of the exposure.

"Symantec is currently in the process of reaching out to our pcAnywhere customers to make them aware of the situation and to provide remediation steps to maintain the protection of their devices and information."

(Reporting By Jim Finkle in Boston, additional reporting by Nicola Leske in New York)

Posted by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor

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