Today, Microsoft released a public beta of its new, free consumer anti-malware product codenamed “Morro”, which now has an official product name: Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE). This new solution will address the growing need for a PC security solution tailored to the demands of emerging markets. You may remember that “Morro” was originally unveiled back in November 2008 after we announced the discontinuation of retail sales for Windows Live OneCare subscription service effective June 30, 2009. As we described in this blog last year, Microsoft Security Essentials is intended for consumers, not business customers. Microsoft continues to offer security solutions for businesses with the Forefront line of products as part of its Business Ready Security strategy.
It is important to note that MSE will have a very positive impact on Forefront, because it allows Microsoft to capture even more threat intelligence from customers as more people use the free anti-malware solution. We'll be able to use that information to help extend our security research and in the development of signatures and protection capabilities in our Forefront products, which are being deployed by increasing numbers of enterprises today, with thousands of Microsoft security partners certified to sell and deploy Forefront solutions. And, of course, there's an exciting road ahead for Forefront as we release a brand new set of products for this family in our next fiscal year under the codename "Stirling".
Key points about Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE)
· The MSE beta will become available to the first 75,000 visitors to www.microsoft.com/security_essentials starting Tuesday, June 23, 2009. An English language version will be available to beta testers in the U.S. and Israel, and a Brazilian Portuguese version will be available in Brazil. Support for Simplified Chinese in China is scheduled to follow shortly after initial beta release.
· MSE release (RTM) is scheduled for H2 2009 in 10 languages and in the following 20 markets: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.
· MSE will include new protection technology, as part of the Microsoft anti-malware engine, called “Dynamic Signature Service (DSS)” which delivers real-time threat signature updates to the client when it detects something suspicious, whether code or behavior. As we mentioned previously in April, Forefront Client Security 2.0 will also include DSS when it releases in H1 2010.
· MSE is designed for consumers and will be offered as a free download separate from Windows (including Windows 7).