DUBLIN: Microsoft has given an official name to its software for protecting computers against spyware. Formerly known as Windows AntiSpyware Beta 1, the software will be called Windows Defender it becomes available next year.
A posting on Microsoft's TechNet Web blog announced the change and also revealed some details about capabilities coming to the software. The current version of Windows AntiSpyware Beta 1 has 18 million users, a Microsoft spokesperson said.
Windows Defender would employ the same detection technology used in Microsoft's antivirus engine, improving the spyware detection capabilities, according to the blog post.
The software would also protect users against rootkits and keystroke loggers. Rootkits hide files, potentially malicious in nature, from security software.
Keystroke loggers are programs that record keystrokes so a hacker can discover a password or other sensitive information.
Windows Defender will also sport an updated user interface, and enterprise customers will be able to receive updates to Defender through Windows Server Update Services.
Windows Defender will be part of Windows Vista, Microsoft's latest operating system scheduled for release next year. It will also be available to users of Windows XP, Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003.
Users would be able to disable it and use spyware software from a different vendor if they choose.
Windows Security Center, which alerts users if they aren't running an anti-spyware program, would recognise third-party anti-spyware software,the spokesperson said.