Facebook has formed a two-faceted relationship with five prominent players from the security industry.
The first facet will be invisible to most, as it will see the social
network share its URL blacklists with those generated by Microsoft,
McAfee, TrendMicro, Sophos, and Symantec. Facebook says pooling
resources in this way will make it less likely that its users are sent
to known sources of malware or other online nasties.
The second part of the deal is expressed at the new Facebook AntiVirus
Marketplace, a page where the five vendors above now offer their
security wares for sale. Software downloaded from the page is free, but
only updates with new antivirus signatures for six months. Microsoft's
Security Essentials is Redmond's offering and usually offers free
updates in perpetuity. It's not clear if the version offered through
Facebook limits the free update period.
The five vendors will also blog on Facebook's security blog, where the new deal was announced. ®