Security

Avast acquires Secure.me in privacy/security lovefest

avast secure me

Consumer antivirus maker Avast has acquired Secure.me, a Facebook-focused personal security startup.

“I am overwhelmed that our vision has reached its destination,” wrote Secure.me cofounder Mario Grobholz on the company blog. “The deal with Avast is the most crucial milestone in our company’s history.”

Secure.me launched in November 2011 as a way parents could keep their eyes on their offsprings’ Facebook activity, including outgoing and incoming messages, wall posts, and status updates.

Secure.me also searches for preset or user-created search terms, sending notifications when the terms pop up in Facebook content. And its photo recognition technology keeps a virtual eye out for pictures with specific people in them, whether or not that person has been tagged in the photo.

Then, last fall, the company launched App Advisor, a program to protect all Facebook users — not just kids — from third-party applications in the mood for personal data.

But with mixed business success and no immediate opportunities to take investment, the Secure.me team started looking around for other opportunities. Grobholz said his team will continue to focus on personal data security at Avast.

Avast was founded in Prague in 1988 by researchers Pavel Baudiš and Eduard Kučera. The terms of the acquisition were not immediately disclosed.