Joined: Jun 15 2003
Location: New York
|Post subject: Microsoft on Track to Offer Anti-Virus Software
Posted: Tue Jun 15, 2004 11:09 pm
|SEATTLE (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp. is still on track to offer an anti-virus product that will compete against similar software offered by Symantec Corp. and Network Associates Inc., the world's largest software maker said late on Monday.
Mike Nash, chief of Microsoft's security business unit, told reporters that Microsoft is developing software to protect personal computers running Windows against malicious software, the worms and viruses that in recent years have plagued users with data loss, shutdowns and disruptions in Web traffic.
"We're still planning to offer our own AV (anti-virus) product," Nash said.
Asked if that would hurt sales of competing products, such as Network Associates' McAfee and Symantec's Norton family of products, Nash said that Microsoft said it would sell its anti-virus program as a separate product from Windows.
Competitors have long feared that Microsoft might consider bundling anti-virus features into Windows, which would undercut and harm their businesses, regularly citing that possibility as a risk in quarterly regulatory filings.
But on Tuesday, Symantec said it welcomed the competition and news that Microsoft would be charging separately for its anti-virus software.
"While Microsoft has not said anything new regarding their plans to enter the anti-virus market, Symantec is happy to hear that they plan to compete fairly with a fee-based, standalone offering," the company said in a statement. "With a level playing field, all the vendors in the space will compete for mindshare based on what customers believe to be the best product to suit their needs."
Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft acquired anti-virus technology from GeCAD Software Srl., a Romanian software company, last year to develop its own software.
Microsoft, whose Windows operating system is a favorite target for computer viruses, launched a company-wide "Trustworthy Computing" campaign in early 2002 to boost the security and reliability of its software.
Nash did not give a time frame for the release of Microsoft's anti-virus software.
? Reuters 2004. All Rights Reserved.
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