Symantec and Microsoft have always had an uneasy relationship: the former depends on the latter for a platform for its products, yet often finds itself in direct competition with the software giant. Now, with Microsoft’s new operating system Vista still on pace for release in January 2007, Symantec is warning that the OS may harm it and other security software companies. In a statement released today, Symantec communications director Chris Paden said that Vista will “reduce consumer choice” when it comes to computer security.
Paden’s beef is with the new Windows Security Center, an update to the control panel that made its first appearance with Windows XP’s Service Pack 2. He claims that the interface comes with default programs to handle virus protection, a software firewall, and a spyware scanner, and that the user can install replacements for these applications but not access them through the security center program.