Kaspersky anti-virus cuts web access of thousands of PCs

image captionKaspersky is one of the world's best known security companies

Thousands of computers running Microsoft's Windows XP operating system were unable to connect to the internet after installing an anti-virus update.

Users said they were also unable to access their internal company networks.

Russian IT security company Kaspersky Labs told users to disable its anti-virus software or roll back the update.

Two hours later it issued a fix - but since their PCs were unable to auto-install new code from the net, users had to perform several tasks first.

Kaspersky told its customers: "Please disable the web AV component of your protection policy for your managed computers."

It then told them to go the repositories section, download an update and re-enable the protection.

Repair jobs

The company issued a statement, apologising "for any inconvenience caused by this database update error".

"Actions have been taken to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future," it said.

Dorset-based IT consultant Graham Lord wrote on the micro-blogging site Twitter: "Bravo on breaking the internet on all your XP clients.

"Your update just set back one of my repair jobs by a day's work."

But Spain-based security blogger David Barroso tweeted: "So Kaspersky QA [quality assurance] team failed with this update but they quickly released a fix, which it is something good."

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