Hi all, my name is Matthew Braverman and I'm a program manager on the anti-malware technology team at Microsoft.
On Tuesday, Bill Gates and Ray Ozzie introduced the new Windows Live and Office Live services. One of the highlights of this launch was the introduction of the Windows Live Safety Center (Beta). The Safety Center includes a frequently updated, on-demand virus scanner which you can use to scan your machine for such threats as worms, Trojans, backdoors, and some user-mode rootkits. The Windows Live Safety Center is built by one of our sister teams and uses the anti-malware engine and signatures built by our team. I highly recommend that you check out the site. We'd also value any feedback you have on the site.
The virus scanner on the Windows Live Safety Center beta site runs a scan of your computer only when you visit the site. It does not run periodic scans of your system, and does not provide features to prevent you from getting infected with a virus in the first place. It simply helps you get them off once you've gotten infected. So I want to remind everyone of the importance of having complete, up-to-date antivirus software on your computer. But, antivirus is just one step in helping to secure your system. Running a firewall, and making sure your system is up-to-date are also very important. For more information about helping to keep your PC secure, a great source is the Microsoft Protect Your PC site.