Facebook today implemented new features to protect its users with the launch of Antivirus Marketplace, a new portal on the social network that will offer free licenses to antivirus software and utilise the URL blacklists from five of the world’s biggest antivirus and Internet security companies.

The Marketplace will host solutions from Microsoft, McAfee, TrendMicro, Sophos, and Symantec, incorporating the unique blacklists generated by each company into Facebook’s own anti-phishing and malware protection filters, further securing Facebook users as they browsing and interactions with the social network.

To access the new protection tools, all you have to do is visit the Facebook Security Page and select from the options listed on the page. For example, McAffee is offering free licenses to its AV software for a period of six months, all you have to do is sign up via the links provided.

Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 15.56.49 520x275 Facebook debuts Antivirus Marketplace to protect its users with free antivirus apps and URL blacklists

The link with these companies doesn’t end there.

Facebook will also provide the means for each of the security companies to provide educational materials on browsing best practices, data security and other notable message. Updates can be shared directly to the News Feed by simply hitting Like on the Facebook Security Page.

Facebook believes its partnership with Microsoft, McAfee, TrendMicro, Sophos, and Symantec will “better help us defend against existing threats, anticipate new ones, and arm people with the tools they need to protect themselves.”

The company adds:

“Protecting each other against the bad guys requires cooperation and today’s announcement represents the shared commitment by leaders of the security community to defend everyone against existing threats, anticipating new ones, and arming people with the tools they need to protect themselves.”

Facebook has exhibited its close alliance with Microsoft in the past week, announcing an agreement that saw it purchase $550M in patents from the software company. It represented a portion of the patents that Microsoft recently agreed to acquire from AOL, bolstering the social network should it face legal action in the future.

Last year, both companies combined to combat child pornography, with the implementation of Microsoft’s PhotoDNA platform.