Cybersecurity is no longer a nice to have option, but a priority both for corporate clients and individuals. As more and more of our data are stored either in our devices or the cloud but are accessible through laptops, tablets,and smartphones having top-notch protection is mandatory to avoid identity theft, illegal money transfer and more. The antivirus is also a way of protecting our hardware too as malicious programs can infiltrate and use our resources for cryptocurrency mining.
The problem of digital protection is so important, that Microsoft chose to automatically do this for its clients by implementing Windows Defender as part of the operating system, starting with Windows 10. This is not the best option by far, even compared to some free alternatives, but it is minimum protection against malware and viruses.
One handy feature of the Windows Defender is that it automatically disables itself if it detects that you want to install a third-party antivirus. Since it is never a good idea to have two antivirus programs running at the same time, if this doesn’t happen automatically, you can learn here how to turn off Windows Defender Windows 10. Next, choose one of the following options and protect your data and your gadgets.
Even the free core edition offers excellent protection against malware following a threefold approach. First, it scans the entire computer looking for malware signatures. Simultaneously, a monitor looks at file activity and any running code. This is a continually learning system, sending anything suspicious to headquarters and getting from the central unit the signatures of newly discovered malware a few times per day. It gets 99% of all malware in test conditions and 100% of zero-day malware which was previously unlisted with some false-positives as well.
It has anti-ransomware features whichinclude some directories automatically like Windows, Desktop, Documents,and media which are the most sensitive to this kind of attack.It also automatically scans any external data source like USB drives or e-mails.
The paid versions come with impressive extra features, like anti-pinshing protection, an inbuilt VPN client software including 200MB of free data and multilayer ransomware protection.
The special features also include:
- a much-needed password manager to simplify our lives
- Safepay hardened browser
- Wi-Fi network scanner which looks for weak password encryption
- File shredding and encryption
- Parental control.
A household name in the world of antiviruses, Kaspersky lives up to the promise and delivers top malware detection and removal. It can block around 98% of malware in a controlled environment and performs equally well in an online environment if it has been previously enabled as part of the browser. It also offers an evaluation of site’s health right in the search engine, advising against navigation if unsafe.
It does a great job at isolating and destroying infected files, thus preventing the machine from getting re-infected. A cool feature of Kaspersky is that you get three licenses with each purchase so you can protect all your devices or share it with friends for a fraction of the cost.
Like most top antivirus programs, the paid version includes parental control features, a password manager and top-notch anti-pinshing tools. The on-screen keyboard is designed to prevent key-loggers from capturing sensitive password information.
The only downside of this tool is that is it known for slowing down the systems on which it runs. Although it is thorough, it is also resource intensive and can cause a delay in the execution of even simple tasks like downloading a video or opening an e-mail.
Although with lower performances compared to the previous options, ranking at just 97% and with some flaws, this is a great choice for gamers. It automatically detects when you want to play and suspends some of the functions to offer increased access to resources. It works both on the machine and online, automatically whitelisting gaming sites.
It doesn’t identify threats as they enter the system, but it does a decent job when these are completely downloaded. Unfortunately, it also ranks lower regarding pinshing websites, in the free version but performs ok in the paid one. This enhanced option also comes with password managers, personal firewalls and pinshing filters.
It can become very annoying since it uses a pop-up method to alert about threats and this requires additional attention from the user as it can be distracting. A second pop-up of the same message just defines this as plainly annoying.
These tools are just some of the many options available on the market. The most valuable lesson to be learned here is to choose an antivirus. Before deciding on a paid, premium version, it is best to test each of their free options for a week or so and decide which suits best your working style and security needs.