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Intel/McAfee Targets Embedded, Mobile Security

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 22 comments

Intel explains why it acquired McAfee in a conference call to Wall Street investors.

Just two weeks after Intel finalized its acquisition of McAfee, the processor giant explained its reasoning for dumping nearly $8 billion USD into the purchase during a conference call with Wall Street analysts. Essentially the company plans to integrate McAfee's security technology into processors for embedded devices. There are also plans to provide cloud-based security services for mobile devices.

Renee James, an Intel senior vice president and general manager of the Software and Services group, went into greater detail, explaining that Intel wants to build security management capabilities directly into hardware. This would allow mobile and other devices to communicate in real time with cloud-based security services. "The services will provide up-to-date protection for the devices including detecting and blocking malware, authenticating users, and verifying IP addresses and Websites," James said.

Dave DeWalt, president of the now-wholly-owned but independent McAfee subsidiary, told Wall Street analysts that its security capabilities and visibility will be extended down to embedded devices including laptops, smartphones and tablets. This is especially important given that said devices could be used to access enterprise networks by hackers.

McAfee is also working with the Wind River subsidiary to integrate its security into Wind River's OS for embedded devices within ATMs, network gateways and other applications. DeWalt added that Intel could even develop embedded computers for printers, televisions and cars with McAfee's security solutions baked right in.

According to DeWalt, Intel doesn't want to just provide security as a layer on top of the operating system. Instead, the company wants to push the services "down below" on future Intel chips. This will supposedly help speed up and improve McAfee software performance. "The further you move security down the stack, the more visibility of the architecture you get," DeWalt said.

So why did Intel choose McAfee? Renee James said that Intel needed both security software and a complete service platform in order to build up its security business. Doing so from scratch would have taken up too much time and tons of cash to replicate the services McAfee had already established. Those include McAfee's popular security software and a security service cloud it had been working on for the last five years.

To learn more, eWeek covered the entire conference call here.

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  • 4 Hide
    house70 , March 16, 2011 6:09 PM
    keep that McAfee failure away from my device!
  • -1 Hide
    nebun , March 16, 2011 6:26 PM
    abut time mobile hardware had implemented security...we need it
  • 3 Hide
    extremepcs , March 16, 2011 6:40 PM
    Sweet! Now botched McCrappy updates will brick the device, not just crash Windows. I applaud the effort, but DO NOT trust McAfee after we lost hundreds of machines to their fowl up about a year ago.
  • Display all 22 comments.
  • 3 Hide
    ricardok , March 16, 2011 6:41 PM
    I'm with @house70...
    keep that McAfee failure away from my device! (2)
  • 1 Hide
    pale paladin , March 16, 2011 6:50 PM
    they better keep that shit away from me. not even McAfee enterprise is worth a damn. junk all junk.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , March 16, 2011 7:01 PM
    I will not touch anything that is associated with McAfee, I have had more customers computers compromised running McCrapee software than every other Security Software combined, I will never-ever support them, even if Intel now own them, ever!

    trust me when I say I do not welcome this step by Intel, and it means me not using the products they produce using this setup to supply my customers! I simply do bnot trust McCrapee at all!
  • 0 Hide
    rantoc , March 16, 2011 7:36 PM
    Do we get paid for beta-testing as well as the reduced battery life by the resourcehoging of McAffe's several year "mature" software?
  • 0 Hide
    ltbob , March 16, 2011 7:44 PM
  • 0 Hide
    jkflipflop98 , March 17, 2011 12:05 AM
    The people that run Intel are idiots. It's a good thing the core business is so strong or they'd run the company into the ground overnight.
  • 0 Hide
    pjmelect , March 17, 2011 1:03 AM
    just as well they didn't buy Norton.
  • 0 Hide
    neoverdugo , March 17, 2011 1:14 AM
    Screw McAfee and Intel!!!! If intel wants to bust its own processor with that failure then do it. I ain't buyin their junk.
  • 0 Hide
    leorick , March 17, 2011 1:52 AM
    I wonder what Intel was thinking when they decided to buy Mccrappy? I like the idea of more security in our devices but Mcafee? With their very deep pockets, I'm pretty sure it be easier for them to make something from the ground up.
  • 0 Hide
    rajeshsundaram , March 17, 2011 2:18 AM
    One crappy buy ... and a creepy motive.
  • 0 Hide
    acecombat , March 17, 2011 2:50 AM
    Ever heard of testing before a production rollout?
  • 0 Hide
    g00fysmiley , March 17, 2011 4:50 PM
    didn't somebody tell intel that avg was free.. adn better >_<

    but yea of all the companies why mcafee... their program is such bloatware
  • 0 Hide
    Specter0420 , March 17, 2011 5:59 PM
    pjmelectjust as well they didn't buy Norton.

    Someone has not kept up with current tech for 2 or 3 years now. Norton rebuild their software and became the number one paid antivirus back in 08 or 09! I get sick of reading stupid comments like this one. Toms readers are supposed to be on top of their tech... Mccrappy blows and this will seems like a bad move to me.
  • -1 Hide
    Specter0420 , March 17, 2011 6:01 PM
    blows and this seems like *
  • 0 Hide
    sinsear , March 17, 2011 7:42 PM
    The day that McAfee is embedded into intel CPUs is the day that I jump ship to AMD.
  • 0 Hide
    pjmelect , March 17, 2011 11:38 PM
    pjmelect :
    just as well they didn't buy Norton.

    Someone has not kept up with current tech for 2 or 3 years now. Norton rebuild their software and became the number one paid antivirus back in 08 or 09! I get sick of reading stupid comments like this one. Toms readers are supposed to be on top of their tech... Mccrappy blows and this will seems like a bad move to me.

    I have read for many years that Norton had improved their software “this year” so that it is not bloated and slow and uses all of the memory and uninstalls cleanly and every year that I have tried it, it has been the same crap. Modern computers are now a lot more powerful so that Norton runs a lot better but the last time I tried it a couple of years ago it was still a dog.. As I recall when using Norton’s your computer is no longer under your control as to what software you install but under Norton’s control. Maybe they have got their act together now but based on past experience I am not hopeful.
    MacAfee was always better than Norton but not by much being the second worst anti-virus program in my opinion in regard to memory usage and bloat and control, but at least it uninstalls relatively cleanly.
  • 0 Hide
    virtualban , March 18, 2011 7:25 AM
    They can put effort into producing and embedding their chips as they want, as long as they give me the option to disable it and put competing products in. Intel is in too strong a position to be compared to monopolistic Apple.
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