Simultaneous with the advancement of technology is the further advancement of digital viruses. Is your computer 100% protected from malware?
This article discusses the top antivirus software in on features, protection, and pricing. Before that, we deem it essential to inform our readers about antivirus software and malware. After all, the way to destroy your enemies is too keep them close.
As computer users increase, so do security threats.
In today’s digital world, data is one of the most essential concern we must protect against unknown viruses. These approaches our computers without warning. Thus, having effective antivirus software is a must in order to keep confidential matters stay as they are.
Antivirus software is a program designed to protect computers against malware: viruses, worms, trojans, and other unwanted and unknown intruders. These types of malware put your computer at risk. In other words, antivirus software protects your computer against bugs and viruses.
To better understand antivirus software, it is essential to have a solid grasp of what digital viruses are. Basically, a virus is one of the many malicious software under the category of Malware. Along with virus are adware, bots, ransomware, and rootkit, among a plethora of others.
Today, antivirus software protects your computer not just from virus per se, but to almost forms of malware – whether known or unknown.
Understanding Common Malware
There are different types of malware currently existing and soon to exist. As reiterated, as our technology advances, ill-intentioned programmers have also improved their ways to access our computers illegally – mostly through malware.
Here are some common types of malware our antivirus system protect us from:
The virus is one of the earliest and strongest malware to computers – thus, the term “antivirus”. True to its name, once it infiltrated your computer system, it multiplies so fast that it infects not only your own device but also everything it contacts with.
Once the virus spreads, they will steal your data by corrupting them. First: you will experience a drastic slowing down of your computer until it ceases to become functional.
Most antivirus software is equipped with a mechanism to fight against viruses. However, there are also other types of malware designed to evade those layers of security which viruses cannot.
Like a theft in the night, Adware infiltrates your computer during those times when you are not aware.
Adware is one of the most common and persistent types of malware. Usually, it comes with the free software or programs we install without thinking. Next, your browser and desktop will be invaded with unwanted advertisement – usually NSFW (Not Safe for Work) ads.
Do you remember when you tried to download that free e-book and clicked “Download Here”? Unknowingly, you might have invited adware to your computer.
To avoid adware, computer users should be:
- Be mindful every time he or she downloads something from the internet. Especially, when the software is from a third-party or an untrusted site.
- The computer must be equipped with antivirus software to block adware from infiltrating your computer system.
Bots are malicious software which hackers use to infiltrate and control your computer remotely. Further, they can also transform themselves into other types of malware in order to invade other machines your computer makes contact with.
Once the host machine decides to take any action – to take down a site or crash a server – the bots that have crept to computers will perform such accordingly. Worst, you might be unaware that your computer is part of such an organized illegal movement.
Akin to digital kidnapping, ransomware holds your files hostage and only release them after you have paid the asked ransom money. Worst, you can never be sure if they will ever release it or when such hostage-taking will occur again.
In dealing with this type of malware, it is advisable not to become gullible enough to pay for the ransom. The hackers have screwed up your files and you have no assurance they will not be doing it again – after all, you are a paying victim.
The best solution against ransomware is great antivirus software. Again, prevention is better than cure – antivirus software is better than paying for your files’ ransom money.
Phishing is one of the most popular threats to cybersecurity nowadays. Often times, you unknowingly consent to this kind of scam.
Technically and officially, phishing does not fall under the umbrella of malware. Unlike software, phishing lures computer-users to access links – usually a fake payment portal – where they enter their confidential or financial information.
With this, the hackers will have access to their accounts and suck their victims dry.
As our lives revolve around technology, we also have to be protected from these kinds of threats.
Here are the top 3 antiviruses which can provide you with adequate protection against malware.
Top 3 Antiviruses
1. Anti-Virus Guard (AVG)
AVG offers free basic malware defense which includes AVG’s Secure Browser – a pre-installed browser extension which acts as an ad blocker, cleans your cookies, and confidentially saves your password.
This antivirus’ Secure Browser is a state-of-the-art browser which offers users incredible browsing speed while enjoying protection against Internet malware. It also includes various layers of protection such as firewall, file encryption, and webcam protection.
This antivirus also has an in-app software called AVG TuneUP which manages your computer system: it cleans up bulk files, optimizes performance, and closes down the background software which slows down the performance of your computer.
Surely, AVG is loaded with relevant features to ensure the overall protection of your computer.
The malware-detection technology of AVG starts with scanning and comparing files within the database of malware. Once new threats are detected, it is automatically to AVG’s laboratory for further analysis. The results are then relayed to the databases of its more than 200 million users.
AV-Test’s analysis shows that AVG Internet Security achieved a perfect score of 100 percent against both common and zero-day malware. With the series of lab tests using more than 300 sample malware, AVG has garnered a total score of 99.4 percent success rate,
AVG offers free antivirus software – AVG AntiVirus Free that works perfectly from Windows XP up to Windows 10. This free software includes a password manager, a game mode, and a secure browser.
For upgrades, the following plans are offered:
- AVG Internet Security: $70.00 per year for an unlimited number of computers (Windows and Mac)
- AVG Ultimate: $100.00 per year for an unlimited number of computers (Windows and Mac)
Compared to other antivirus software, these pricing schemes of AVG is way more affordable – especially if you have businesses which involve a massive amount of computers and devices.
Be protected from invaders. Download AVG here:
Bitdefender is one of the best antivirus software available on the market. With its performance profiles feature, it can automatically kick in profiles whenever actions or applications are launched.
Bitdefender has various protection features against malware – parental control, file shredder, and secure browser among many others.
This has ransomware protection and a phishing filter to deter cybercriminals away from your computer. Also, with the built-in Anti-Theft option, your devices can be located once they are lost or stolen.
Like AVG TuneUp, Bitdefender has a built-in software – Bitdefender Photon – which scans both your hardware and software. It optimizes your computer performance, making it work better and faster.
Indeed, Bitdefender has both digital and physical protection for your computer and other devices.
Many reviews claim that Bitdefender is the most secure antivirus today.
AV-Test’s analysis proclaimed that this antivirus software is 100 percent effective against malware, both in-the-wild and zero-day. This is above the usual 99.5 percent average in the antivirus industry.
Bitdefender is also the only antivirus to receive a Level 1 certification from MRG Effitas – the World-leading, independent IT Security Testing. Here, 18 antivirus software programs were tested with different malware – trojans, bots, worms, ransomware, and others. Interestingly, Bitdefender defeated all the 337 sample malware with a success score of 100 percent.
Indeed, Bitdefender is proactive when in terms of protecting your computer. Even in worse cases – malware in a rootkit, this antivirus has a last resort called Rescue Mode – where Bitdefender itself reboots your computer into Rescue Mode so it can possibly remove the malware.
For starters, Bitdefender has a free edition software for download – Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition.
This free edition is simply the bare-bones of Bitdefender. Yes, it offers malware protection, but nothing more.
Here are the paid plans:
- Bitdefender Antivirus Plus: $40.00 per year
- Bitdefender Internet Security: $60.00 per year
- Bitdefender Total Security: $90.00 per year for five devices
- Bitdefender Family Pack: $120.00 per year for 15 instances of Total Security 2019
If you wish to have Bitdefender in more than one computer, you can contact their sales hotline to negotiate for discounts.
All these plans are optimized for the most recent operating system – Windows 7, 8.1, and 10; OS X 10.9.5, Android 4.0.3 and iOS 10.
Checkout and download Bitdefender here:
- Bitdefender TOTAL SECURITY 2020
- Bitdefender INTERNET SECURITY 2020
- Bitdefender ANTIVIRUS PLUS 2020
- Bitdefender ANTIVIRUS FOR MAC
Avast is the best affordable antivirus software compared to other programs. Consequently, it offers lesser features compared to AVG and Bitdefender. Nonetheless, the security it offers against malware is superb.
Light on features, Avast comes with Secure Browser – a browser which filters potential types of malware and keeps them from getting in touch with your computer. Like AVG Secure Browser, Avast’s Browser has extensions for advanced functionality such as ad blocker and cookie cleaner. However, it is not optimized for Google integration.
Also, this antivirus has WiFi Inspector feature which scans all the devices connected to your Internet network and provides you with insight regarding potential vulnerabilities. This is very efficient – especially whenever you constantly connect to public WiFi.
Overall, Avast is light on features. However, it has affordable upgrades options that could provide you with more features in less value.
Avast has two layers of security protection – first: it scans malware and identifies them through comparing them in the database; next: it monitors computer and network activities to watch out for indications of any malware attack. All findings are reported to Avast’s cloud lab for analysis and any upgrade to the system are sync into Avast’s more than 400 million users.
AV-Test lab scored Avast with a perfect grade of 100 percent for both zero-day and common malware. Over several tests, Avast scored around the ranges from 100 to 98.6 percent.
This antivirus also offers its users with free antivirus software – Avast’s Free Antivirus. Although free of charge, it does provide a great security suite as it includes a Wi-Fi scanner, password manager, and secure browser, among others.
Upgrading will provide you with access to extra features such as firewall, file shredder, and extra malware protection.
Here are Avast pricing plans:
- Avast Internet Security: $60.00 per year
- Avast Premiere Edition: $70.00 per year (includes webcam spying protection)
- Avast Ultimate: $120.00 (includes Avast’s SecureLine VPN service, system password manager, and various identity-protection features)
Increase your computer security. Download Avira now.
The Bottom Line
Antivirus software programs are essential components not only for maintaining the performance of our computer but also for safeguarding our digital privacy.
There are various types of malware which we must be protected from, namely: virus, adware, bots, ransomware, among many others.
In this article, we discussed what these types of malware are and what they do. Also, we talked about how to fight against them using the top 3 antiviruses: AVG, Bitdefender, and Avast.
Is your computer 100% protected from malware? If yes, tell us how you do it. Let us know by leaving comments below.
DM Pascual is an experienced web content writer and SEO specialist. Her fields of expertise include: Law, Technology, and Popular Culture, among others. Check out her works on www.legal-scrutiny.com.