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Google acquires VirusTotal

URL-scanning provider will retain autonomy

VirusTotal's URL-scanning capabilities should complement Google's own products.
VirusTotal's URL-scanning capabilities should complement Google's own products.

Online malware scanner VirusTotal - provider of aggregated malware detection services - has been acquired by Google for an undisclosed figure, allowing the search titan to bolster defences in its own stable including Gmail and social network Google+.

VirusTotal's URL-scanning service is free and information gathered is openly shared with other organisations, allowing prompt reaction to newly discovered cyber threats - a practice Google has pledged will continue.

"Security is incredibly important to our users and we've invested many millions of dollars to help keep them safe online," a Google spokeswoman told El Reg. "VirusTotal also has a strong track record in web security, and we're delighted to be able to provide them with the infrastructure they need to ensure that their service continues to improve."

"VirusTotal will continue to operate independently, maintaining our partnerships with other antivirus companies and security experts," VirusTotal said in its blog. "We've worked hard to ensure that the services we offer continually improve. But as a small, resource-constrained company, that can sometimes be challenging. So we're delighted that Google, a long-time partner, has acquired VirusTotal. This is great news for you, and bad news for malware generators."