With the advancement of technological devices, operating systems and applications comes the development of malicious programs called computer viruses. These programs are easily spread on personal computers and laptops.
These malicious programs were developed to compromise files, breach personal information, cause havoc, and even permanently damage the use of any device. These days, almost all operating systems are vulnerable to viruses. Not only the Windows OS, but also on any Android, Mac OS, and IOS devices.
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To elucidate computer viruses was the development of antivirus software. This software is considered an essential element of computer devices since it is programmed and developed to detect and eradicate the various types of computer viruses.
There are many antivirus software out in the market with each program providing certain services to protect the system of any user. They are available as a free service or as a paid service with the choice depending on the user’s preferences.
Characteristics of an Antivirus Software
What you will look for an antivirus depends on your preferences, but these three common denominators that should be considered.
Antivirus software mustn’t monopolise and control too much resources on your computer system. It should have a minimum impact on system resources because each time you turn on your computer, this software will already be running in the background. Surely, you do not want to have a lagging computer when you are working or even playing games. If the antivirus has high system requirements, a simple act of browsing the internet or browsing through emails will take a considerable time.
It is also vital that antivirus software has high detection of threats, including all forms of suspicious threats. These menaces must be detected as this can compromise your computer activities and even your personal information.
User-Friendly and Ease of Operation
Choose an antivirus that has a user-friendly interface. It must be easy to use and uncomplicated. It must enable the user to efficiently perform tasks such as updating of antivirus programs, addressing threats, and scheduling scans without too many complications.
After considering the basic antivirus requirements, you can opt to consider other features it has to offer. All-in-one antivirus software not only protects the system against viruses, but also has the capability of protecting the system against Malware, Spyware, Adware, and even Ransomware. You can also choose to have additional features including firewalls, anti-phishing, whitelisting, spam filtering, and even VPN. Password protection can also be considered, as well as online banking protection. Other minimal features are file shredder and file encryption.
It is also good to have ransomware detection. A ransomware is a form of Malware that intentionally locks the user out of their files or any device. It then prompts a window or pop-up window with a message demanding for an anonymous online payment before the user can use the file or re-access the device.
Anti-phishing protection is essential to combat phishing attacks. These attacks are usually considered a cybercrime because the perpetrators will pose as a trusted website or entity and will attempt to contact individuals for their personal information via email, text, or telephone. It is termed phishing to correlate to the fishing activity. But instead of harvesting fish, it gathers data to be used for questionable activities.
Finally, the cost of antivirus should be considered. Antivirus software with numerous premium features will cost a lot compared to those with basic features. It is wise to test the free version first before purchasing so you can assess which features are necessary for your daily usage.
Having mentioned the critical elements to consider in antivirus software, below are three of the most notable software in the market today. These antivirus software were chosen as it has remarkable features which makes them truly promising for their prices. Bitdefender and Kaspersky are two great antivirus solutions, each of them has their own strengths and unique features. An overview of their capabilities is stated below.
Bitdefender Antivirus Plus comes on top of the highly recommended protection software. Several websites consider this software as their number one choice. Independent lab tests and web protection tests produce outstanding scores for this software.
Bitdefender is easy to install, although an online account is mandatory before you can download and install. It has a very good Ransomware and Malware protection, valuable privacy tools, a Safepay feature which is very useful for online transactions, and also an option to integrate VPN. Other features include unlimited password manager, a secure browser, a Wi-Fi network scanner, a file shredder, and even an anti-theft feature for laptops and mobile phones. You can choose to download a free 30-day trial before purchasing. It can be purchased for $25 for the first year for one device or you can purchase for $24 (current discounted promo as of this writing), which is suitable for protecting three devices. The prices are based on their website postings which may change without prior notice.
McAfee Antivirus Plus comes in next based on several websites. This software produces good scores in hands-on tests with excellent scores in anti-phishing tests. McAfee already includes a Ransom Guard feature which is meant to protect against Ransomware. They have a subscription that can already cover five devices for a cost of around $29, which is already a bargain price making a small family truly protected. Other features are safe web browsing, password manager, cross-platform and multi-device feature, home network protection, file lock, and even encrypted storage feature.
Trend Micro Maximum Security is the last software that will comprise our top three contenders. This is considered by one website as the best antivirus protection for Windows 10. Trend Micro is also recommended by one website to be the best antivirus suite for beginners. However, Trend Micro is not famous for home users because of the company’s focus on enterprise security products. Nevertheless, they offer the most comprehensive threat protection for a year with their Maximum Security product priced at $39.95 with the capability to protect five devices. One of the features included is Pay Guard, which is very useful for those who transact online. It also has an advanced AI learning technology, a password manager, a secure browser, and file encryption to secure PC, Macintosh, iOS, and Android devices.
Along with these three top antivirus are various other protection software. When choosing, remember to look for the feature that will serve you best. Whether you opt for a free or paid subscription, the important thing is that you have a protection against nasty viruses. Do not wait for your system to be compromised or for your personal information to be captured by cyber criminals. Protect your computers and other devices the way you protect your health. Antivirus software is a worthy investment for your files and devices. Like they say in the real world, prevention is still the best cure.