In a blog post on Friday VirusTotal announced they’d been purchased by Google. The post says that “VirusTotal will continue to operate independently, maintaining our partnerships with other antivirus companies and security experts.”
VirusTotal is a website where you can upload a file or a url to be scanned by multiple scanners. Files are currently scanned by over 30 scan engines. The URL scanning recently integrated results from Securi, which is my favorite website scanner.
The unanswered question is what is Google trying to accomplish with this purchase? For VirusTotal, presumably they’ll have access to more resources. For Google, their Safe Browsing in Chrome will probably take a step up. And it definitely gives them more data to mine.
We’ve all seen too many companies we like purchased and then distroyed. It sometimes occurs because the purchase was for one part of the company and the rest withers. Other times, the brains behind the operation cash out or are pushed out by a new later of micro managers. In spite of VirusTotals assurance that the involved venders wont change, I wonder how many will change direction to a scanning service not owned by a competitor.
In the comments to that blog post, one user mentions metascan-online.com. I haven’t used that site, but it is good to have alternatives.