As you've probably already heard, Microsoft acquired GIANT Company Software, Inc. so that it can "provide Microsoft® Windows® customers with new tools to help protect them from the threat of spyware and other deceptive software" (from the press release). A beta version, based on the AntiSpyware product, is expected to be available by the end of January, 2005. Personally, I hadn't heard of GIANT until our announcement, but based on what I've read, it sounds like a nice piece of technology. For a more in-depth review, read Paul Thurrott's article on his SuperSite for Windows. One of the more interesting quotes:
And I'm not alone: In a Spywarewarrior.com product tests, Giant AntiSpyware came out on top, detecting 111 of 138 possible spyware installs, compared to just 79 for Ad-aware (second place) and 69 for Spybot (fourth place).
I've long been an advocate of both Lavasoft's Ad-Aware and Spybot Search & Destroy. I have both products installed on all of my computers, and I run them freqently. However, it would be nice to have a single application that provides broad coverage. Welcome to Microsoft, GIANT!