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In its most recent round of anti-virus testing, independent security research firm, AV-Test did not certify Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE). MSE was the only anti-virus in this round of testing to fail to meet certification criteria set by AV-Test.

In order to be certified by AV-Test, an anti-virus needs to score a minimum of 11 points (out of 18 points), and this time around MSE fell just short of certification with only 10.5 points.

According to the test results, Microsoft Security Essentials lost half a point in terms of usability scoring 5.5 out 6 points, but only scored a 1.5/6 for protection and a 3.5/6 for repair. The loss of points in terms of protection resulted mainly from MSE blocking fewer current threats. In fact, of the newly arrived malware samples, MSE only detected about 64% in October, while the average detection rate was 89%. Of the malware samples that were two to three months old, MSE detected 90%; the average detection rate was 97%.

Despite its failure to be certified in the current round of testing, it could bounce back in the next round. In fact, the only other recent time MSE failed the test was two years ago. In the previous test performed by AV-Test, MSE performed well enough to be certified with a score of 12.5.

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