AVG is looking beyond security and placing a strong focus on online privacy, as concerns around that issue continue to rise.
The anti-virus vendor has announced a new “Do Not Track” feature that the company says puts control of online privacy “back in the hands of users”.
The new feature notifies users when they are being tracked and allows them to block or disable tracking. According to AVG ANZ security advisor Michael McKinnon, it is all about empowering customers in an increasingly sophisticated digital world. “We believe all internet users are entitled to know how their online data is collected and used,” he says.
McKinnon says the new tool was developed in response to feedback from users and, at the moment, is available to users of the Home and free editions. Users of the business solution may get it further down the track but, according to the security advisor, “there are larger concerns that need to be addressed”.
“Lots of people are unaware of the kind of tracking that happens online,” he says. “This is an opportunity for AVG resellers to engage in conversations with customers about online privacy. Most people aren’t really aware of tracking.”
McKinnon points out the growth of social networking as one of the factors for this need to raise awareness and adds that, these days, it is commonplace for websites to collect data about users and even share it with third parties. AVG says that some forms of tracking even allow advertisers to follow users around the internet and deliver targeted advertising across multiple websites in ways that many users are unaware of.
New customers who purchase AVG’s 2012 product, as well as current customers who update AVG’s free and paid 2012 consumer security products with the new service pack, will automatically get the new feature.
The company has also announced a wi-fi guard feature, which offers protection from unknown wi-fi access points.
The service pack for AVG 2012 is available for the vendor’s Internet Security 2012 product, as well as for Anti-Virus 2012 and Anti-Virus Free.
The company currently has 350 resellers in New Zealand and says it is looking to bring new channel partners on board. “We are actively engaged with the New Zealand market and we are always looking for new resellers. We are early leaders in this field,” says McKinnon, adding that he hopes that will be a draw card for potential new resellers. “We're actively encouraging any potential partners in New Zealand to review our Reseller programme available at http://www.avg.co.nz/resellers/,” he adds.