Computer Security 101: How to Find a Perfect Antivirus
If you want your computer to serve you well and your personal data to be secure, you need to find an optimal protection system for your device. No antivirus can give complete protection against viruses and other malicious programs. It proves in practice by many people and tests. The main problem is that that malware, as well as operating systems, gets updates and evolves, which is why your antivirus must be up to date too. So, regular updating of the operating system is vital for the security of your gear and personal data. The main source of protection for the computer is its very user who chooses the optimal protection system and watches the sources of possible threats.
Why you Need an Antivirus
Windows installed on a PC necessarily requires an antivirus. Some people believe that the antivirus is not a necessary program and it only loads the processor, interfering with the normal operation of running applications. Theoretically, there are conditions when viruses cannot enter your device. If the PC is not connected to the Internet, you do not use flash drives and floppy disks and insert only licensed CDs. However, such conditions exist only in theory. The main source of viruses and trojans are suspicious Internet sites, downloaded pirated programs, cracks, flash drives from infected computers, etc.
An important factor when choosing an antivirus is the system requirements that it makes. If the computer is not new, the antivirus can slow down its operations vastly if you choose a wrong one. It is up to you to choose the one for your device, and the best one to find it is to test it. To test antivirus, you can use the free trial version for 30 days. Most of the antivirus developers offer such an option.
Features of an Antivirus to Pay Attention to:
- Antispyware. Block the theft of personal data, various interceptors of passwords, credit card numbers.
- Email scanner. It checks emails in specialized email programs (Outlook, The Bat, Thunderbird, etc.)
- Antispam. It blocks messages that contain unwanted ads.
- Anti-rootkit. This feature detects and removes disguised malware.
- Firewall. Use it to block unwanted network connections.
- Parental control. It allows you to restrict your child’s access to unwanted resources on the Internet. Additionally, you can control the working hours of children at the computer, with specific programs.
- Web antivirus. Use it to scan web pages for viruses and malicious scripts.
- Protection against phishing. The program blocks fake malicious sites that copy the appearance of popular pages on the Internet.
- Game profile. It is a special mode, in which the antivirus minimizes its impact on the performance of games, and also does not interfere with various pop-up notifications from the game.
- Desktop manager. It is an activity monitor that is installed on the sidebar in Windows Vista and Windows 7.
- Heuristic analysis. It is a feature of detecting new viruses that are not yet in the update database.
You may often find strange files on disk or at startup. Most users are not able to understand whether these files are dangerous or are part of installed programs. The solution to the problem may be sending such files for analysis to virus analyst or check it before opening.
A good antivirus should have minimum false positive reports. Often, an antivirus has a configuration to remove suspicious files automatically. A mediocre antivirus, in which databases are not tested or not tested enough before the release, may at some point delete important files, which may lead to the termination of programs or the crash of the system.
Clearly, a running antivirus monitor takes part of the computer’s resources. Often, antiviruses are evaluated by the criterion “slows down / does not slow down.” Of course, most of users choose what is more important for them. However, do not forget that usually the antivirus that gives the most protection weighs more, and the antivirus that “does not slow down” most likely provides less reliable protection. Usability is always inversely proportional to the level of security, and this is true not only for antiviruses.
How to pick a plan
A standard antivirus has a basic set of features. It scans files, protects email, and sometimes runs minimal system scans. It may not be enough for your particular user requirements (such as the need for VPN, parental control, or game mode). In turn, comprehensive antiviruses have more security features. Such comprehensive antiviruses protect against visiting malicious and potentially dangerous websites, hacker attacks, can run dubious applications, and much more safely.
On the one hand, an antivirus is more a means of complacency than protection. The developers of computer viruses test their creations on the most famous antiviruses, to circumvent their protection. Sometimes a paradox arises that a little-known antivirus is more effective than the widely known one. However, you can always consult antivirus ratingsmade by professional who test and know every program in and out.