When ZeroVulnerabilityLabs' ExplotShield was first released back in September of 2012 it made quite the big splash on the Internet. The application shields core applications and processes like Java, web browsers, and system components such as Windows Help against exploits.
My first thought back then was that it was an alternative to Microsoft's excellent EMET until one of the developers confirmed that it was using different techniques and that you could run both programs side by side on the PC to benefit from them both at the same time.
Malwarebytes acquired ExploitShield recently and has hired the two-man team that developed the application in first place into the company as well. Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit is a rebranded version of the ExploitShield application that has just been released as a first beta.
What may be interesting is that the beta makes available all features of the program's corporate edition now, meaning that it is not only protecting web browsers anymore but also other core applications running on the system.
The acquisition by a respected company such as Malwarebytes certainly strengthens the claims the developers made previously. The program has not only received praise in the past though but also criticism.
What is clear is that Anti-Exploit uses different mechanics to protect the computer system. Where EMET attempts to block attempts to exploit programs it protects on the system, Anti-Exploit tries to block the execution of payloads on the system.
The conclusion is that it will protect systems effectively against exploits that use certain technologies to attack a system.
The application itself is lightweight and runs as-is after installation. You cannot modify the programs that are shielded as of now. The list includes all four major web browsers for Windows (Firefox, Chrome, Opera and Internet Explorer), Java, Adobe Reader, Microsoft Office applications, Windows Script Host, and various media players. Options to control the list will be added in future versions.
You can download the latest version of the application from the official Malwarebytes forum.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.