AVG buys Sana to avoid cloud-based security

Free anti-virus vendor AVG has expanded by buying up identity theft experts Sana, choosing to avoid cloud-based security tools.

The vendor, which has over 80 million free anti-virus users, said that the new technology would add real-time or zero day' protection. This would look at the behaviour of what was going on in a computer, see if anything was irregular, and identify it.

AVG's chief executive JR Smith said that the new technology differed from what was offered by its rivals like McAfee, which promoted solutions based on information stored in the cloud to check for threats.

He said: "This eliminates the need for cloud protection. It allows us to sit on your computer and protect you then and there."

AVG were still unsure about whether the new technology would be offered in its free software offering.

Smith said: "We try and differentiate between the pay and the paid, so that's always the dilemma for us when it comes to new technology.

"We're evaluating, so we're not certain whether we are going to put it in the free software or not."

With AVG's major growth in the last couple of years -largely driven by its free anti-virus model - IT PRO asked whether the company were making plans to branch out from its core customer base, which was made up of consumers and small businesses.

"We need to focus on what we do really, really well. Off the back of the free product we are consumer, and very small business," Smith said. "That's where we are going to continue to focus. It's a massive market. The SMB market itself is equal in size to the value of the enterprise market."

"It's our sweet spot, so there's a lot we can do. There are 70 million small businesses out there. That's plenty of work for us."