Your PC machine is threaten every day by countless internet menace: the vast majority of these menaces takes the form of a computer virus. There are many different breeds of viruses (worms and malware try to destroy directly your data and your machine, while adware or spyware are much more subtle, and ransomware plays a different game altogether), and for each one there’s a specific kind of antivirus, software that can find, eradicate and in most cases prevent that your PC will be threatened at all. We reviewed a lot of antivirus, and there are our results.
To be called “virus” a computer program has to obey to two rules: it has to execute itself, and it has to replicate itself in some way. Lately, it has also been called “malware,” a contraction of “malicious software,” to indicate any files or software that intend to harm your data or your PC. If the virus doesn’t need a host file to propagate itself, it is called worm. Depending on its purpose, a malware can be called in many ways.
If it disguise itself as a harmless file or attachment, it’s a trojan virus. Spyware is a particular kind of virus that spy on your computer activities, often using a keylogger to record the exact combination of keys you type in order to steal sensible data like credit card information or other personal data. When a virus injects unwanted ads in your browser or any other part of your system, you got an adware. A rootkit, instead, is a virus that will grant access to other software to areas of your hard disk that would otherwise be restricted. Ransomware are a tricky kind of virus that lock you out of your data or account and force you to pay a ransom to regain control.
Depending on your situation and the gravity of your infection, there are many things you can do to resolve your problem – or prevent it. If you’re a consumer or a freelance, you’d probably be safe enough with the consumer versions of any antivirus we tried, provided that you keep it updated and you keep your PC away from clear menaces. You can find specific software for specific hazards, letting you clean your PC from threats and prevent attacks.
First line of defense is of course your computer’s firewall, which you should always activate. Many software house make also firewall application, often included in their security suites. So you can choose the best internet security suite according to your needs – or your problems. Most of them provide you with a full scan of your system, eradicating malware, adware or spyware from your PC. These security application verify every site that you go to and warn you if there’s something suspicious going on; they can do the same check on links found on your social network feeds. Some security suites, almost always the most expensive ones, add some parental control features to the mix, letting you block access to inappropriate content to other users of your PC. Anti-phishing means are deployed to every message you receive (and then click through), to verify they aren’t scam baits that trick you into put personal information such as credit card passcodes or private password into fake sites.
If you work in a business environment, your IT department probably has already set up many resources to protect the company digital safety, which typically means end-to-end encryption, file server scanning, email server protection, and a much more robust firewall. Enterprise versions usually give IT administrators granular control over company machines, and at the same time, they can apply different security policies to different users or group of employees. As per the consumer edition, it’s vital that an antivirus can successfully block a zero-day exploit, which means that the antivirus engine is finely tuned to recognize and neutralize malware that is still not yet labeled as a known threat.
Anyway, the most powerful internet security policy is very straightforward: be careful on every site you browse, don’t download anything (especially from site you don’t trust), don’t click on attachments from email coming from somebody that’s not already among your contacts. All those rules that seem to come straight from the ‘90s, but remember: the weak link, in this case, isn’t the virus, isn’t the computer: it is the user. You.
Zemana AntiMalware is a reliable on demand and online malware scanner. Zemana AntiMalware doesn’t actually provides real-time protection because it’s a second opinion malware scanner designed to detect and remove malicious code.
ZoneAlarm Extreme Security is a great unusually complete and multi-device security suite that includes a premium firewall, an antivirus engine powered by Kaspersky Internet Security, and a spam filter that protects your Outlook Express, Outlook, and Windows Mail inbox.
BullGuard Internet Security is an exhaustive suite that offers plenty of additional protection, thanks to components many vendors reserve for top-paid suite. This Internet Suite is a great solution for novice users who appreciate a simple, easy, and friendly interface.
Comodo Antivirus provides reliable protection for your daily use preventing viruses and malwares. Thanks to the fast cloud-based scanning, Comodo doesn’t impact your pc’s performance and efficiency. This free antivirus detects suspicious hidden files and protects all your devices, easily scans any drive or file, get in-depth reports on viral activity and detect suspicious files, with is just a tad less informative interface than competitors.
STOPzilla AntiMalware Software is born to help remove malicious code already installed in your computer and protect it from most known malware and virus. STOPzilla AntiMalware indeed provides an additional protection to your PC with another antivirus solution, trying to prove the widest range of protection against threats.
IObit Advanced SystemCare Ultimate offers a standard antivirus protection together with a comprehensive system cleanup and a tune-up for your PC. The Advanced SystemCare Ultimate anti-virus capabilities grants an adequate protection to your PC by scanning, detecting, blocking and removing the majority of malware and viruses.
BullGuard Antivirus is a clear-cut antivirus and antispam software that grants multiple protection layers for an efficient virus catch rates and a bulletproof protection system, a safe browsing system detects malicious code and phishing attacks, and fast customizable scans.
Avira Free Antivirus boosts comprehensive protection against all types of virus and threats, protects your privacy, secures your data, and removes threats. Avira is able to block all types of malware, worm, including viruses, trojans and spyware.
Qihoo 360 Total Security Essential offers a free complete PC protection from Viruses, Trojans and other emerging threats. This modern suite with a simple design boosts a clear interface easy to set. Modules offered by 360 Total Security Essential are not the traditional ones usually offered in Internet Security competitors suite
Sophos Endpoint Protection is a complete suite that makes it simple to secure your systems against malware and advanced threats. This software, offered with the cloud option, grants all-round protection: antivirus, HIPS, malicious traffic detection, web security, and much more.