Facebook and McAfee are teaming up to improve security on the popular social networking site.
For Facebook's 350 million users, the partnership between the two companies has multiple aspects. If Facebook users are compromised, the social networking site will require them to run a scan using a free remediation tool developed by McAfee. In addition, Facebook users will be offered a complimentary six-month subscription of McAfee Internet Security Suite. After those six months, users will be eligible for special discount subscription pricing.
The latter part of the deal, the companies said in a joint statement, is meant to address the problem of users surfing the Web without anti-virus.
"Facebook is very serious about security and has made significant efforts to protect its users and service by investing in dedicated teams and sophisticated systems, and this partnership with McAfee furthers that mission," said Todd Gebhart, executive vice president and general manager for McAfee Consumer, Mobile and Small Business, in a statement. "We believe our partnership will make a real difference in the battle to secure the Internet by giving so many more people access to industry leading technology from McAfee."
To educate users about the latest threats, Facebook and McAfee will work together to develop educational content for the Facebook Security Page to serve as a resource for security-related information. McAfee has also pledged to continuously update its own Facebook Page, which features the offer on the "Protect Your PC" tab as well as security information on "Protect Your Kids" and "Security Notes" tabs.
"By partnering with a market leader like McAfee, we are taking an unprecedented step towards making the entire Internet more secure and reducing the possibility of threats being brought onto our service by unsuspecting users," said Elliot Schrage, vice president of global communications, marketing and public policy at Facebook, in a statement. "Keeping the Internet secure requires that users, security vendors and Internet companies all work together. We think we've developed an excellent model for this collaboration, and to ensure the greatest possible value to our users, Facebook will not accept any revenue from subscriptions. We hope this is something that other services will emulate."
The McAfee Internet Security Suite software will be available to Facebook users in the U.S., U.K., Australia, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, France, Canada, Mexico and Brazil. Other countries are expected to be added during the first quarter of the year.