Kaspersky Lab Joy as Microsoft Relents on Third-Party AV

Kaspersky Lab Joy as Microsoft Relents on Third-Party AV

Kaspersky Lab is celebrating this week after Microsoft apparently changed its stance on third-party AV in Windows, in response to antitrust criticism.

Founder Eugene Kaspersky penned a lengthy blog post in November 2016 outlining his beef with Microsoft; namely that the firm was squeezing out security partners.

He argued that after upgrading to Windows 10, the OS “deactivates all ‘incompatible’ security software and in its place installs … you guessed it – its own Defender antivirus.”

He added that users are urged to switch to Defender – deactivating other software – with a large “Turn On” button; that third-party developers aren’t given enough time to write compatible software and that renew notices for non-Microsoft security tools are hidden from users.

However, Windows Enterprise and Security partner director, Rob Lefferts, claimed that at a Microsoft Virus Initiative forum last month, Microsoft and third party security partners including Kaspersky Lab have thrashed out a way forward with the following changes to be made in the Windows 10 Creators Update in the autumn:

  • Microsoft will work more closely with AV partners to help with compatibility issues in advance of each feature update
  • Partners will get better “visibility and certainty” around released schedules
  • AV partners will be able to use their own alerts and notifications for renewals
  • Microsoft has changed Windows notifications on expired AV, with a new warning which will stay on the screen until the user renew or switches to Defender/another provider.

“We appreciate the feedback and continued dialogue with our partners and are pleased to have found common ground with Kaspersky Lab on the complaints raised in Russia and Europe”, concluded Lefferts.

The changes have been welcomed by Kaspersky Lab, which said it would drop its complaints to EU and Russian anitrust investigators.

“We have a long history of cooperation with Microsoft, and we sincerely believe that these changes will make the cybersecurity market healthier, resulting in better protection for all users,” wrote Andrei Mochola, VP of consumer products. “Protecting information and the data that matters most to our users remains our primary goal.”

Source: Information Security Magazine