DOD protecting PCs at home

Defense Department employees can now download, at no cost, antivirus and firewall protection solutions from McAfee Security for Consumers under a licensing agreement between the Defense Information Systems Agency and Network Associates Inc.

McAfee's home use portal service became available to all DOD employees Jan. 31, and includes VirusScan 7.0 Home Edition and other McAfee Security solutions.

VirusScan Home Edition, which DOD staff can download free of charge under the agreement, includes antivirus and firewall services. The software is the retail version of the McAfee products and can be used with Microsoft Corp. Windows 95, 98, ME, 2000 or XP.

In addition to securing their home computer systems, the new offering helps eliminate inconvenience to employees, who would otherwise have to download antivirus files from their work computer onto compact discs or floppy disks, and then load them onto their home computers to gain the same protection for free, according to DISA.

This software license agreement is part of DISA's Enterprise Anti-Virus Software Initiative, which was launched in September 2002, when the agency awarded five-year contracts to three computer protection companies: Network Associates; Northrop Grumman Information Technology, which teamed with Symantec Corp.; and Government Technology Solutions Inc., which teamed with Trend Micro Inc.

Mark Small, senior vice president of government, health and education at Network Associates, said the free home use offering may be expanded to other government agencies and commercial firms.

"In order to address security concerns for dialup users, in particular, the McAfee home use portal service is a solution that we are currently looking at offering to a number of large organizations both public and private," Small said.

In addition to the free VirusScan offering, DOD employees can purchase and download other McAfee Security solutions including McAfee SpamKiller, the company's antispam solution, at a discounted price.

DOD workers seeking more information can call DISA at (703) 607-6900.

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