Editor’s note: Atlanta Beat is a regular feature on Mondays.A very familiar face to cable television viewers showed up last week to pitch a new cyber-security product from an Atlanta firm.

Lynne Russell, a longtime anchor at CNN’s Headline News, introduced CyberScrub AntiVirus, Lifetime Edition, on “Tech Headline News,” a marketing venture also launched by CyberScrub.

“She had a nice impact,” Rob Robbins, who handles marketing for CyberScrub, tells Local Tech Wire. “She created a lot of buzz.”

The video segment with Russell discussed the CyberScrub product that is now available at a one-time cost of $49.95. No more annual renewal fees means consumers can save $80 or more, CyberScrub said.

Russell, who worked at Headline News for 18 years, said she was motivated in part to do the show because of what she called the “antivirus tax”, or annual renewals, and the fact CyberScrub is based in Atlanta as is CNN.

“Quite simply I’m over it. It’s time to put an end to what could be considered nothing less than extortion in any other context,” Russell said. “CyberScrub will succeed because they are providing a great service to the consumer.”

(By the way, Russell has also written a new book: “Enemy of the State: Civil Liberties After 9/11.”)

Robbins said the company believed that hiring Russell and presenting a video press release would be more effective than a typical e-mail or print announcement. And CyberScrub plans to make more use of Tech headline News in the future.

“Our goal is to have a major operation,” Robbins says. “We will use it to promote our products and services and, potentially, other companies.”

Privately held CyberScrub was launched in 1999 by Bill Alder.

For more about CyberScrub and Tech Headline News, see: www.cyberscrub.com

Weather Channel Interactive names new exec

The Weather Channel is already available in 87 million homes through cable TV, and its web site draws 25 million visitors a month. But the company wants more traffic at www.weather.com

To assist in that drive, Weather Channel Interactive (TWCi) has hired Matthew de Ganon as vice president of desktop applications. The group is planning to further expand its efforts to drive more usage of its features on the Internet. It launched Desktop Weather in 2001.

“De Ganon will oversee the development and execution of product and business-development strategies; work with TWCi’s robust ad sales and database marketing teams to develop innovative advertising tools; and create extensive relationships and other creative distribution channels for user acquisition,” the company said.

De Ganon joins TWCi from Arcavista Corporation, a desktop applications development company. He was president and chief marketing officer. DeGanon also was a founder of K2Digital, an Internet development and consulting firm.

Wave7 broadens ‘fiber to the curb’

Wave7 Optics recently increased its offerings for high-speed broadband services through “Last Mile Link”. The Alpharetta-based firm said LML now provides advanced fiber-to-the-curb services and offers lower per connection costs for apartment buildings and other multiple-user complexes than either DSL or cable.

“FTTC (fiber to the curb) no longer means sharing traditional broadband data rates amongst multiple subscribers, but rather sharing 500 Mbps amongst four or even eight subscribers,” the company said.