We’re Not in the Business of Understanding our User

A few years ago I wrote about sometimes your product is useful to people in ways you didn’t know—and that you’d be smart to recognise that and capitalize on itn (What Your Product Does You Might Not Know About, 2007). One of the examples I cited was ZoneAlarm, a very popular firewall that was bought …

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When Firewalls Move

Here’s the details on the Zone Alarm deal I promised a couple of days back: Effective immediately, Sygate and Kerio users switching to ZoneAlarm Pro will receive a $20 instant rebate, over 40% off the retail price of $49.95. “A firewall is the most essential, fundamental element of protection against hackers,” said Laura Yecies, general …

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Zone Labs to Offer Sygate, Kerio Users a Deal

From a press release emailed to me by Zone Labs, makers of Zone Alarm: The personal firewall market is currently undergoing a major shift, with Symantec set to retire the Sygate line of personal firewalls tomorrow (including the free version and Sygate Pro), and Kerio discontinuing its personal firewall at the end of December to …

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ZoneAlarm’s Impressive About-turn, Or How To Do Blog PR Right

A day ago I vented my disappointment at a sneaky marketing gambit inside ZoneAlarm’s otherwise excellent free firewall software, which scared the user into running an external spyware scanner in the hope of getting them to upgrade. This morning I received word from their PR department that this promotion “has been turned off. The wording was not …

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ZoneAlarm’s Sneaky Spyware Scare?

(See a more recent post on this for an update. ZoneAlarm no longer has this ‘feature’.) I’m a big fan, and user, of ZoneAlarm firewalls. Their interface is clean, clear and I like the system tray icon which doubles as a traffic monitor. But sometimes they do things that don’t, in my view, help educate …

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A Free Zone Alarm?

For firewalls, I always recommend Zone Alarm from ZoneLabs. To my mind it’s still the best and most intuitive firewall around. But most people only need the free version. And that’s where the problem is. Why do ZoneLabs make it so hard for ordinary users to download it? Readers and friends who have tried to …

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Zone Labs Snapped Up – Firewalls R Us?

My favourite firewall, Zone Alarm, is being bought by another firewall maker, Check Point Software Technologies [CNet News.com]. It looks to me as if there’s quite significant consolidation within the security software industry, not just from the point of view of big guys buying the smaller guys, but of companies trying to create products that …

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Software: An Alternative Firewall to ZoneAlarm?

 Aaron Heskel from Belgium suggests Agnitum’s OutPost as an alternative to ZoneLabs’ ZoneAlarm firewall. I’ll definitely check it out.     As with ZoneAlarm, there’s a free version which may be enough for most folks. I’ll let you know how I get on.

Software: A Way To Avoid The Messaging Nasties

 Do a lot of online chat, or instant messaging (IM)? If you do, you’re as vulnerable to nasty folk trying to do nasty things to your computer as using email, including viruses, worms and other ways to get information from your PC, take over your PC or just to make it stop working.     …

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