June 15, 2004 5:10 PM PDT

Microsoft: No antivirus product yet

Microsoft intends to create an antivirus service in the near future, but has not finalized its plans, a company executive said Tuesday.

The comments followed a media report that the company was readying its entry into the virus protection market. However, the software giant has not decided what form its service will take, said Amy Carroll, director of product management for Microsoft's Security Business and Technology Unit.

"Our plan is to make antivirus part of our pay-for product offerings," she said. "But we don't have specific (antivirus) product plans right now."

The comments come almost exactly a year after the company bought some assets of a Romanian antivirus firm, GeCad--a move that set off speculation that the giant was going to turn its attention to dominating the antivirus market.

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While the company's product plans are still in limbo, Carroll stressed that Microsoft is benefiting from the GeCAD purchase. Two tools the software behemoth released to remove the MSBlast and Sasser infections from compromised computers had a great deal of help from GeCAD employees.

"A lot of the expertise that they brought us certainly contributed" to Microsoft's being able to create those tools, she said.

Any antivirus products would compete with offerings from Network Associates' McAfee and Symantec's Norton software.

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Interesting move... You got to love it...
Well you have to love this. Now they are going to create a for pay service to prevent our Windows systems from getting infected with virii. When the reason we have the virus problem is because of bugs and secuirty problems with Windows. I guess they have found a way to make money off their bugs and security holes. I suspect now we will only see security patches released after the major threat is past. That way they can rake in the money for their new sevice before they plug the hole that caused it for free. Damn is is just brilliant. I don't know about any one else but I have this strange desire to bend over.

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