Everyone in the United States has heard of the leading antivirus vendors Symantec, Mcafee, Computer Associates, and Trend Micro. These companies have market-leading presence in the United States. Microsoft, as well, has plans to become a key player in this market.
Microsoft acquired intellectual property and technology from GeCad software in 2003, a company based in Bucharest, Romania. They also acquired Pelican Software, which had a behavior based security as well as Giant Company Software for spyware and Sybari Software, which manages virus, spam, and filtering for phishing.
A lot of discussion has centered on whether Microsoft will come to own a dominant position in the antivirus market by simply bundling its technologies with its operating systems at no charge. This, of course, is a similar technique applied in other markets such as word processing and Internet browsers.
There are, additionally, a number of antivirus vendors who continue to play a role in this market, as well as many companies boasting great market presence in other countries that show signs of becoming more widely known.
These vendors include GriSoft out of the Czech Republic; Sophos in the united Kingdom; Panda Software out of Spain; Kaspersky in Russia; SoftWin in Romania; F-Secure in Finland; Norman in Norway; Arcabit in Poland; VirusBuster out of Hungary; and AhnLab in South Korea.
It is not clear where the industry is heading and everyone in this market faces a rapidly changing landscape. The amount of effort to find and provide fixes for viruses is staggering. Malicious programs are getting more complex and the number of them is increasing. Many companies may find themselves without the resources to match the efforts of those truly bent on creating havoc.
Some virus companies are getting hundreds of new samples a day! Moreover, the new viruses are getting “smarter” in that they propagate themselves quickly and they often hide themselves and are smart enough to move around in a system by renaming themselves in an effort to make it hard to remove them.