Did Microsoft just kill the antivirus industry?

Virus, Spyware & Malware Protection | Microsoft Security Essentials.

Am I imagining things or did Microsoft effectively kill Symantec and McAfee and every other anti-virus vendor with this free release of the Security Essentials?

I am on a new Win 7 platform, the 30 day trials all expired, and I was a bout to pull out the credit card when a colleague sent me a link to the Microsoft Security Essentials. After years of prowling through download.com looking for free virus scanners like AVG, I am a happy man. I wonder why Microsoft didn’t do this sooner.

Author: David Churbuck

Cape Codder with an itch to write

8 thoughts on “Did Microsoft just kill the antivirus industry?”

  1. And reviews show it’s detection to be top notch. As much as I like Eset NOD32, at $30-40 a pop and the fact that it NEVER actually finds anything (due to my internet habits), I can’t justify that.

  2. I would’ve said that AVG began the termination of Symantec and McAfee. A virus-free Internet seems like something the collective would prefer. To me, that’s why charging $30 per year per user to purchase basic, mass-manufactured protection seems unbalanced and a ripoff.

  3. For the life of me I will never understand Microsoft… Thanks for the heads up

  4. Wow, I am predisposed to avoiding all things M$ if possible, so hadn’t given this a look. I’ll now give it try, instead of Avast which I have been running for a while.

    Happy Delurker day!

  5. I just have a REAL hard time thinking of Microsoft doing anything securely.. If they can build an antivirus platform, why can’t they build it right in to the OS so that AV software isn’t needed at all??

  6. Security Essentials does indeed seem to continue to be a secret treasure, now 4-5 months after its release. With Windows now having built in antispyware/antimalware with Windows Defender, and with its 2 way built in firewall, and now with a free antivirus solution, I too am left to wonder why individuals would continue to pay $60-90 for Norton/Mcafee/Symantec, etc and then the recurring cost of $30 a year for “maintenance”. On top of that, many of the extra features bundled in with those other packages are already performed with the updated browsers (such as anti-phishing).

    Anyway, congrats to all those whove found Security Essentials, and please remember to a) create a non admin account for daily use on your PC and b) download and apply your system patches on a regular basis. I have advice on that on my own website, at


  7. Business model? Give it away – follow Google’s model?

    Or, do you think it will be free for a while until it is well engrained – 2-3 years, and then move to a license / fee structure?


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