Intel’s Accelerated Memory Scanning will use GPUs to make virus scans more efficient on Windows PCs

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Virus scanning, especially with third-party programs, is a processor-intensive task and can sometimes take a toll on the proficiency on a Windows PC. Well, Intel is now saying it has plans to allow anti-virus programs to use integrated graphics systems (instead of the CPU) for increased battery life and performance when running scans for viruses and other malicious content (via The Verge).

Known as Accelerated Memory Scanning, the chip maker says its new tech leverages the power of the GPU to reduce CPU utilization from 20 percent to as little as 2 percent during virus scans. “Current scanning technologies can detect system memory-based cyberattacks, but at the cost of CPU performance. With Accelerated Memory Scanning, the scanning is handled by Intel’s integrated graphics processor, enabling more scanning, while reducing the impact on performance,” explained Rick Echevarria, VP of Intel’s platform security division.

Intel mentioned it will be partnering with Microsoft to support Accelerated Memory Scanning, with it coming to the Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection later this month. However, it only will be available on modern chipsets, including the  6th, 7th, and 8th generation Intel processors. Intel also noted that they will also work with other third-party vendors to support the new type of scans.

Intel has faced heavy scrutiny in the tech media following the fallout from the Spectre vulnerability found in the company’s chipsets. The chipmaker, though now says its 8th gen chips have built-in protections against Meltdown and Spectre thanks to Intel’s Security Essentials technology. “Intel Security Essentials will ensure a consistent set of critical root-of-trust hardware security capabilities across Intel Core, Intel Xeon and Intel Atom processors,” explained Echevarria.