Pioneering work since 1986

From IKARUS Software to IKARUS Security Software

“IKARUS Software GmbH” existed several years before IKARUS anti.virus (formerly IKARUS virus.utilities), the first and best-selling product that made the company internationally known.

The first main pillar was the development of customized software for small and medium-sized companies. Yes, they were still doing that back then, even though it was not profitable! Programming was done in compiled BASIC and COBOL on PCs under MS-DOS 2.11.

The second mainstay were standard products. IKARUS had a design tool for COBOL developers in its program that was recommended by Microsoft. For a while, we conducted negotiations with Microsoft about the product, but then Microsoft stomped its own COBOL team and bought a COBOL compiler for which such a tool already existed. A pity…

The first computer virus “in the Wild”

TIM should bring the breakthrough. It stood for “Time Is Money” and was an appointment management program that was always active in the background and could read and display the appointments of a packed week in less than a second, even from floppy disks. TIM was written in macro assembler, had over 30,000 lines of code and was elegant and fast. Unfortunately, the sales partners in Europe and North America were not – their financial difficulties lead to license failures in almost seven figures. This was a very difficult situation for IKARUS, because TIM sold well.

One day, in the fall of 1987, IKARUS received a diskette from a TIM user. Something, he wrote, broke. Upon close analysis, it turned out that a computer virus had infected the disk. This was something new for us that we had never seen before “in the wild”.

From hobby to product

By chance, however, IKARUS was well prepared. In 1984, company founder Viktor Mayer-Schönberger, together with Joachim Schneider, had responded to an article in “Scientific American” that described how two programs in a software environment fight each other. They thought of worldwide competitions (“Core Wars”), and even a programming language was presented. The central survival strategy of the combat programs was to copy themselves often – to reproduce themselves just like later computer viruses. In their spare time, Mayer-Schönberger and Schneider developed a software for Core Wars, with which combat programs could be written and compiled to conduct competitions. Thus, they became the “European Coordinators of the International Core Wars Society”.

Thanks to “Core Wars”, IKARUS was familiar with the basic concepts when the first computer virus was analysed in 1987. The virus was quickly removed from the customer’s disk. An idea was born: How about using this knowledge and developing a software package that would allow users to scan their floppy disks for viruses, remove detected viruses and protect against new infections by (still) unknown viruses? Viktor Mayer-Schönberger wrote a concept that outlined these three tasks in more detail and gave the package a name: virus utilities. In June 1988, the first beta version was finished, followed by the release in autumn 1988: The first IKARUS security product was born. Many more were to follow.

Facts and milestones

  • 2021

    IKARUS anti.virus in the cloud

    IKARUS anti.virus in the cloud simplifies the central cloud management of local AV instances and replaces the IKARUS security.manager

  • 2020

    Platinum partner status with FireEye and Nozomi

    This makes IKARUS 2020 the only 100% Austrian company that has this status with these partners.


  • 2019

    IKARUS managed.defense

    Together with the technology partners FireEye and NOZOMI Networks, IKARUS presents the new IT / OT / ICS solution IKARUS managed.defense.

  • 2018

    IKARUS in the cloud

    IKARUS is presented and integrated into the newly designed IKARUS interface.


  • 2017

    IKARUS with ATP-AddOn

    IKARUS receives an optional ATP add-on and enables FireEye sandboxes to be connected to defend against targeted attacks.

  • 2014


  • 2012

  • 2011


    IKARUS expands the product range with the first Android security app IKARUS LITE.


  • 2010

    Microsoft Gold Certified Status

    IKARUS achieves Microsoft Gold Certified status and is an ISV partner.

  • 2009

    IKARUS security.proxy

    IKARUS expands the portfolio with the IKARUS security.proxy for Microsoft Internet Security and Acceleration Server.


  • 2008

    GTB Innovation Award

    IKARUS wins the renowned GTB Innovation Award for the mobile telephony internet security solution, developed for mobilkom Austria.

  • 2007

    New company name and new corporate design

    The company name is changed from IKARUS Software GmbH to IKARUS Security Software GmbH and the corporate design is redesigned.


  • 2006

    aonVirenchecker and aonSpamfilter

    IKARUS celebrates its 20th anniversary and develops the aonVirenchecker and aonSpamfilter for Telekom Austria.

  • 2003

    CIRCA (Computer Incident Respons Cooperation Austria) founded

    IKARUS founds the leading CIRCA (Computer Incident Respons Cooperation Austria), an Austrian virus early warning system.


  • 2002

    Check Point OPSEC-NG certification

    IKARUS ContentWall / CVP is certified by Check Point OPSEC-NG as the first antivirus / anti-spam product.

  • 2001

    IKARUS Managed Security Services

    First central anti-virus / anti-spam solution with user-based management: IKARUS Managed Security Services (now IKARUS


  • 1997

    IKARUS employees take over the company

    As part of a management buy-out (the management holds the majority of the capital from this point in time), IKARUS employees take over the company.

  • 1994

    IKARUS moves to Vienna


  • 1988

    IKARUS anti.virus (formerly IKARUS virus.utilities)

    Release of the first version of IKARUS anti.virus (formerly IKARUS virus.utilities).

  • 1986

    Company formation

    Founding of IKARUS Software GmbH in Zell am See. IKARUS is one of the first manufacturers of antivirus software worldwide.


Vacancies at IKARUS

Product Owner (m/w/x) - IT Security
Junior Cyber Security Engineer
System Engineer
Malware Analyst


IKARUS Security Software GmbH Blechturmgasse 11
1050 Vienna

Phone: +43 1 58995-0
Sales Hotline:
+43 1 58995-500


Support hotline:
+43 1 58995-400

Support hours:
Mon – Thu: 8am – 5pm
Fri: 8am – 3pm
24/7 support by arrangement

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