Online protection depends on user behaviour

Total Protection is already available to pre-order at prices less than its official £60 tag

Security vendor McAfee has announced its annual refresh of the company's line-up. But the company's 2008 software doesn't pack in too many new features - instead the focus has been on making the software more efficient, a move also made by rival Symantec.

Security vendors are well aware that their software is seen as 'bloatware'. Companies such as McAfee have become keen to portray themselves as having faster start-up times and lesser memory and hard-drive footprints.

Both the Internet Security Suite and Total Protection are leaner, according to McAfee. Total Protection adds network security to the anti-virus, anti-spyware, firewall, anti-spam, anti-phishing and backup tech in the Internet Security Suite.

In a briefing with, McAfee's EMEA marketing guru Marc Vos admitted the company was looking less at the threats themselves and more at consumer behaviour. "It is part of today's situation. Instead of looking at threats...[we're] looking at consumer behaviour. According to McAfee, the theme is to "help consumers avoid the dark alleys of the internet."

And asked whether McAfee would be following Symantec in releasing a specific botnet-tacking package, Vos replied that the company's target audience would "very soon start looking at you with glazed eyes" when talking about bots and botnets.

Total Protection 2008

Among the tweaks to the suite, Security Center has been updated, while the top boxed product, Total Protection 2008, has an enhanced version of McAfee's successful website rating service, SiteAdvisor.

SiteAdvisor, which McAfee acquired just before launch, is a site that rates websites for their security competence. So far there have been 85 million downloads of the toolbar software. It covers 95 per cent of the trafficked web, according to McAfee.

McAfee has dumped the Wireless Security product it pimped in 2007. Vos said the "niche has been filled", although the indication was that it was poor sales which resulted in the axe being swung.

Total Protection also incorporates a Protected Mode which enforces safety ratings depending on age.

The software is in the shops from next week - is already offering Total Protection 2008 for £46. The recommended price is £60.


Dan (Twitter, Google+) is TechRadar's Former Deputy Editor and is now in charge at our sister site Covering all things computing, internet and mobile he's a seasoned regular at major tech shows such as CES, IFA and Mobile World Congress. Dan has also been a tech expert for many outlets including BBC Radio 4, 5Live and the World Service, The Sun and ITV News.