Amsterdam-based security software vendor AVG Technologies N.V. has a new head honcho – Canadian Gary Kovacs will be the firm’s new CEO and managing director, AVG announced July 30.
Kovacs announced his decision to step down as Mozilla Corp. CEO in April. Kovacs joined Mozilla in 2010 and oversaw Mozilla’s transition from the desktop to mobile operating systems, keeping pace with user trends of doing more online browsing from smartphones and tablets by adapting the well-known Firefox browser to an Android app. Mozilla has also developed a mobile OS that will debut on Alcatel’s One Touch Fire.
AVG is also focusing its security and optimization products on the mobile space. It offers apps for Android, iOS, and the Windows Phone, including a free antivirus app that will also track a stolen (or lost) smartphone via a Web interface.
In a quote provided for AVG’s press release, Kovacs echoes the last blog entry he wrote as CEO of Mozilla and a keynote he gave earlier this year. “We know that there are over two and a half billion people online and we anticipate another two and a half billion coming online in the next five years,” he writes. “With all these people online there is going to be an increasing urgency to secure them.”
In his blog post, Kovacs wrote for Mozilla’s Web site about being in Barcelona to debut the Firefox OS at Mobile World Congress. His keynote at the event focused on how most people in developing countries will come online via mobile devices, and that an open system was needed to guide those users.
Prior to his work with Mozilla, Kovacs was a senior vice-president of markets, solutions and products with Sybase, general manager and vice-president of mobile and devices at Adobe , and vice-president of product marketing at Macromedia. Kovacs completed his education in Canada, earning a bachelor of commerce and an MBA from the University of Calgary.
Kovacs has given TED Talks on the topic of behavioural advertising and the business of tracking Web users as they surf online. In the below video, he says “the price we’re being asked to pay for all this connectedness is our privacy.”