As part of the deal, Verizon will offer McAfee desktop antivirus and firewall products along with its broadband Internet service for small and medium-size businesses. Companies will be able to choose the type of protection that best suits their needs and will be charged accordingly. Specific pricing was not released. The service is not available in all areas, the company said.
Network Associates said its plan is to team up with service providers to bundle its products with their services. Last week, Microsoft said its upcoming broadband service,bundled, to help consumers fend off viruses and attacks by hackers.
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Broadband-connected computers are considered more prone to viruses, because the always-on connection facilitates instant messaging, peer-to-peer file sharing and downloads--all fertile ground for attacks. For businesses, virus attacks could result in huge losses. For example, research firm Computer Economics estimates global damages of more than $12.5 billion due to this year's Lovsan,and Nachi attacks.
"Growing businesses often do not have the resources or time to maintain security solutions." Eric Cevis, a Verizon vice president, said in a statement. "They want to deploy a solution and forget about it so they can concentrate on their business. That's why more and more businesses are turning to us to help provide protection against the many threats lurking on the Internet," he said.