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Sophos gives away Mac anti-virus

03 Nov 2010

IT security firm Sophos has released a free Mac anti-virus product for consumers, available to download at no charge, with no time limit, and requiring no registration.

Anti-Virus Home Edition for Mac is available free to Mac home users worldwide and offers protection against all known malware, including both Mac and Windows-specific threats such as Trojan horses, viruses, worms and spyware.

The firm says that many Mac users are “in at least some sort of denial about online security risks”.

“If you have a Mac at home, you can download Sophos Anti-Virus Home Edition for Mac without registration and without a time limit. You don't need to sign up for a password. We won't stop your updates after a few months and ask for a fee,” the firm promised.

When asked what the catch is, Paul Ducklin, Head of Technology in Sophos Asia Pacific, told us, “It's free of charge. So we're not making you pay money. It's free from registration. So we're not making you pay by selling your contact details onwards. It's free from expiry. So we're not hoping to sting you for upgrades later on, once you're ‘hooked’.”

Ducklin says that Sophos only aims to get brand awareness out of the launch, which is working a treat if you’re reading this.

“Seems like we can't win this one,” Ducklin added when faced with our ‘nothing in this life is for free’ line of questioning.

“If we tell home users of Macs they might consider taking cybersecurity -- in particular, protection against malicious code -- more seriously, people say we're ambulance chasing to FUD them into buying our software, even though we don't sell consumer versions of our software. If we give it away, we're plotting something for the future.

“Take it at face value. It's free of charge to home users. No registration and no expiry,” he reaffirmed.

Download the free software here.