I was at a client location recently, and needed to look up some documentation on Backtrack Linux. For those that aren't familiar, Backtrack is a penetration testing tool, used by security researchers to do a myriad of security tests on website, networks and people. The client uses Trend Micro's Site Safety Center for outgoing requests, and I was suprised and disapointed to find out that Trend had Backtrack's URL listed as 'Dangerous' in the category of 'Hacking'.
Security tools can be used for hacking, just like baseball bats can be used to beat people up. But you don't need a license to buy a baseball bat, and Trend shouldn't be protecting people from tools that could be used for nefarious means. Visual Studio can be a hacking tool; in fact I might argue that it is more powerful and easier to use for hacking in some ways than Backtrack!
However, I clicked the 'This link is miscategorized' link, and filled out the form, explaining that Backtrack is a security tool. I thought that I was just making my case, but nothing would come of it. Needless to say, I was shocked when I got the following email the next morning:
New Safety Rating
(originally rated as "Dangerous" by Trend Micro)
New Content Type
(originally categorized as "Hacking" by Trend Micro)
Computers / Internet
So there you have it - Trend does listen. I think it is worth keeping companies like Trend apprised of miscategorizations like this. Trying to keep security tools under the wraps of obsecurity 'for our own protection' is a lot like keeping the tricks of lockpicking a secret, and everyone knows how I feel about that!