Facebook offers free anti-virus solutions from Microsoft and others

With Facebook's digital population now at over 900 million monthly users and counting, there are certainly some concerns that hackers or malware could find their way to a person's PC via Facebook. Today, the social networking service announced a new agreement with a number of anti-virus companies to offer free versions of their software along with some other security efforts.

That list of software includes Microsoft Security Essentials, which is already completely free and just got updated to a 4.0 version. Other companies involved in Facebook's Antivirus Marketplace include McAfee, TrendMicro, Sophos, and Symantec. All of them will offer versions of their software with six month free trials.

In addition, Facebook says that all of these companies have agreed to share their URL blacklist with Facebook. The company says:

Our URL blacklist system, which scans trillions of clicks per day, will now incorporate the malicious URL databases from these security companies to augment our existing level of protection. This means that whenever you click a link on our site, you benefit not just from Facebook’s existing protections, but the ongoing vigilance of the world’s leading corporations involved in computer security. At the moment, less than 4% of content shared is spam (compared to nearly 90% of email) and we are looking forward to making even more progress in the future.

Image via Facebook

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Common Sense Antivirus and Hosts File Antivirus are a pretty effective combination for me. They don't even conflict with each other.

warwagon said,
Just Offer them AVG 2012 Free, and watch them complain when their computer is slow as ****.

then let some best buy employee tell them that is windows's fault, go to a mac and you wont have that problem bs line when they take it in to be "fixed"?

I'm looking forward to incompetent users breaking their computers, web browsing and effectively their Facebook experience with those AVs.

Right. There's couple of times when I try to update my status, tagging friends name and FB said it's a SPAM. So what gives?

littleneutrino said,
Didnt myspace try this at one point and they ended up letting in a bunch of fake anti virus applications?

Apart from I don't think facebook is gonna let just anyone upload an AV entry. In fact, I doubt they'll allow any other companies to submit anything to it tbf.

ccoltmanm said,
This increases the use of anti virus programs and decreases virus rates, hopefully. Exposure is a good thing.

but couldn't it also force malware developers to develop even better pieces of malware?

Matthew_Thepc said,

but couldn't it also force malware developers to develop even better pieces of malware?
Pretty sure they are doing that anyway.

DARKFiB3R said,
Pretty sure they are doing that anyway.

ik, but I mean if they can create a mediocre piece of malware, and have it infect a bunch of machines that aren't protected, then why would they invest so much time into making one to target those that are protected? but then if *everyone* had security software, they couldn't create mediocre pieces of malware and infect computers without security software, so they'd either have to evolve or die. my 2c