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Intel to Beef Up Consumer Security

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Given the broad adoption and increased online usage of personal devices, consumer security is emerging as one of the most important issues nowadays. In an effort to tap this opportunity, Intel Corp. (INTC - Analyst Report) and its subsidiary McAfee plan to deliver innovative security solutions to protect the consumer’s entire digital life.

The consumer benefits of the new personalized security solutions will be demonstrated at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2013.

Intel will introduce a solution, which will focus on safeguarding consumer devices, securing personal data as well as protecting identities online. This user-centric approach will deliver a comprehensive and valuable service to meet the evolving needs of online consumers. The first of these personalized security offerings from McAfee will be available in beta to partners, with the final version hitting the market by mid-year 2013.

Nearly all consumers now use online media for shopping, banking and sharing personal information. This puts a huge amount of their personal and financial information at risk to increasingly sophisticated attacks and scams. Hence, due to the increasing online usages and the resulting distribution of personal information, a full proof security solution is required.

According to a survey by research firm Gartner, worldwide security software revenue totaled $17.7 billion in 2011, a 7.5% increase from 2010 revenue of $16.4 billion. Despite the economic slowdown, the firm expects the security market to experience positive growth going forward.

We believe that the growing consumer security needs will create new opportunities for companies including Intel and also new entrants like Kaspersky to generate additional business.

No business firm wants to lose its online and offline business resources and therefore resorts to modern Internet security software to save valuable data. Consumers too, will be more willing to avail of online shopping banking or other services (that save costs for companies) if their personal data is protected.

Intel is best known as a chipmaker and remains well positioned in the server segment. In the recently reported third quarter, Intel’s earnings of 60 cents per share beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 10 cents. Revenue of $13.5 billion was higher than the revised guidance range of $13.2 billion (+/-$300 million).

However, the sluggish economic recovery and weak PC demand stemming from tablet cannibalization, particularly from Apple (AAPL - Analyst Report), and the company’s failure to expand into mobile gadgets continue to be the causes for concern.

Currently, Intel shares carry a Zacks #3 Rank (Hold).

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