Intel's decision to rebrand its McAfee security division as Intel Security won't have any direct impact on the company's Australia or New Zealand operations, its local managing director has confirmed.
Speaking in the wake of the announcement at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that the Intel-owned McAfee – a security-industry giant originally founded in 1987 – would be transferred to the new identity, ANZ managing director Keith Buckley said McAfee would continue to operate as a wholly owned subsidiary under the new arrangements.
“The name change reflects the value of the Intel brand and its brand attributes such as trust, innovation and performance,” Buckley told CSO Australia, noting that Intel was keen to expand the perception of its security brand past McAfee's traditional strengths.
“While the McAfee name has been strongly associated with anti-virus protection, the security category and the company's portfolio is much broader, and the new name reflects that,” he said.
“Intel aims to provide ubiquitous security and identity protection for individuals and businesses on all computing devices. Security must be an essential part of the compute stack – not something later purchased and bolted on. We must move quickly to ensure security is embedded on every architecture and every computing platform.”
Intel had been cognisant of the need to approach changes to McAfee's iconic brand with care, having approached the acquisition “cautiously”, Buckley said, “to ensure McAfee's value and assets were not disrupted or diminished”.
“For the last three years, Intel has worked together with McAfee to innovate and invent the next generation of security products. This type of innovation takes many years to happen. Now is the time to turn these innovations into value for our customers and partners.”
McAfee products will steadily be subsumed by the Intel Security brand, with Intel Security to offer parts of its existing McAfee security portfolio for free to improve security on mobile devices. Later this year, the company will add Intel Device Protection technology to improve the enterprise security of Intel-based Android mobile devices.
Intel and McAfee's partner networks will remain unaffected, with profitability benefits, enablement and operations all set to remain “business as usual,” Buckley said.
McAfee employees “will continue to work side-by-side with Intel employees currently working on security activities under the Intel Security umbrella,” he added, noting that the transition to the new brand will take “up to a year”.
The new entity will retain McAfee's well-known red shield logo.