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Microsoft To Launch Free Morro Antivirus Application Soon

Microsoft will be replacing its now defunct Live Onecare security package by a free application called Morro which is set to debut fairly soon and which aims to protect Windows users from spyware, viruses (or in geek speak, virii), malware and phishing attempts.

Morro, which is named after Morro de Sao Paolo beach in Brazil, first came to light in November 2008 and is supposed to come in three different versions. Microsoft has been quite shy about details pertaining to this antivirus application and it is unknown as to why it is even bothering releasing Morro. Based on information gathered, we know that Microsoft could trim down the security software so that it works adequately on netbooks.

One can expect shares price of security companies ranging from McAfee to Computer Associates to slip significantly as the world's biggest software company tries to make a place for itself in the already crowded security market.

Microsoft is likely to mimic AVG's strategy and offer a basic version of Morro and offer a beefier version for a fee. Live OneCare which Microsoft released three years ago but proved to be a commercial failure due to a number of reasons. It ended up costing a mere £25 for 3 computer licenses but failed to compete with the likes of Antivir or AVG which provided free security applications.

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Our Comments

Microsoft releasing Morro is like the Tobacco industry offering its own health care service or insurance company; an oxymoron scheme that will leave many customers confuse and may help hackers and cybercriminals in the end. Will it end up in an antitrust battle again?

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Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.