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Panda soups up freebie cloud anti-virus

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Panda Security has improved the functionality of its free cloud-based anti-malware service and launched a new commercial version, Panda Cloud Antivirus Pro.

The paid-for version, which costs from $29.95, offers expanded support and automation.

Panda said nearly 10 million users have used Panda Cloud Antivirus (the free version) since its launch last year. The latest version of the software, released Thursday, features a configurable behaviour blocker.

The free version offers an alternative to the likes of AVG, Avast Free Antivirus and Microsoft's Security Essentials for consumers looking for basic anti-malware protection without paying.

The technology uses a cloud-based architecture to collect and processing malware samples, rather than traditional server-based signature updates. As a result the technology is much less of a memory hog, taking up 15MB of RAM, compared with 60MB for traditional signature-based anti-virus products.

Panda adds that its Collective Intelligence technology is more nimble in quickly responding to new malware threats. ®

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