[unisog] MS Security Essentials and Forefront Client Security academic licensing

James A. McCloskey jamesm at uwo.ca
Mon Oct 26 13:30:14 GMT 2009

Many thanks for sharing this information.

As co-chair of the CUCCIO Information Security Special Interest Group 
(representing some 3 dozen Canadian HE institutions), I wonder if you 
are able to provide any clarity on the applicability of the MSE 
licensing breakthrough for non-US institutions.

Thanks again,

James A. McCloskey, CISSP
Central Information Security Officer
Information Technology Services
University of Western Ontario
jamesm at uwo.ca
519-661-2111 x. 81091

Brian Smith-Sweeney wrote:
> Hello all,
> A number of higher-education security professionals have expressed some
> concern over the licensing terms for Microsoft Security Essentials,
> officially released late September.  The "Use" section of that license
> includes the following language[1]:
> "Use. You may install and use any number of copies of the software on
> your devices in your household for use by people who reside there or for
> use in your home-based small business. "
> The REN-ISAC Microsoft Analysis Team[2] has been pursuing a
> cost-effective antivirus solution for higher-education with Microsoft
> for some time,  and so took it upon ourselves to get approval for the
> use of Security Essentials for students in higher ed.  I am pleased to
> report that we have received the following official word from Microsoft:
> "   * PCs owned by an academic institution should use Forefront Client
> Security (this includes faculty machines owned and managed by the
> institution)
>     * Students, teachers and others may use MSE on their personally
> owned PCs.  If these machines are managed by the institution, FCS is the
> preferred choice but Microsoft Security Essentials is still an option."
> The second point - that student systems are covered by the MSE license -
> is key.  In a year when many higher-education IT budgets are being cut
> drastically we believe the availability of free anti-virus software for
> students could be leveraged to significantly reduce AV licensing costs,
> or allow those without an existing enterprise antivirus license to
> ensure their students are protected.
> I have asked MS to post this information on their website.  In the
> meanwhile I was told by an MS representative that it was acceptable to
> post this to relevant higher-education websites.
> Those interested in pursuing the use of FCS on campus should talk to
> your Microsoft representative.
> I want to be clear that this is in no way an endorsement of one
> anti-virus product over another, and neither I nor anyone else on the
> MAT will be able to provide guidance on the relative effectiveness of
> these products.  The goal of this project was to make sure there was a
> cost-effective solution available to those that needed one.
> Please let me know if you have any questions about the MAT or this
> project.
> On behalf of the REN-ISAC MAT,
> Brian
> [1] http://www.microsoft.com/security_essentials/eula.aspx#mainNav
> [2] http://www.ren-isac.net/advisory.html#microsoft
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