Computers have revolutionized almost every aspect of our lives including helping students learn while in hospitals, to monitoring patients and controlling crucial manufacturing processes. Cyberthreats such as ransomware, viruses, and malware have also increased because of the increasing dependence on computers. Antivirus software is designed to spot these threats and prevent them from causing harm to your PC or stealing personal information.
When selecting an antivirus read review program it is essential to take into account its ability to scan for viruses as well as whether it has a fire wall, and how it performs in independent laboratory tests. You might also want consider its customer support, the frequency it updates and the number of devices it can safeguard. Some programs, such as Norton come with additional features that will help you avoid identity theft and protect your privacy online.
Top programs provide multiple security options. These include heuristic detection which looks for signs that are typical of viruses or malware and signature matching that matches files against a database of known malicious codes. Certain programs also employ sandboxing, which separates malicious files and then runs them in a safe virtual environment, where they are unable to do any harm.
A lot of the top antivirus programs are available for free, though they may not offer as many additional features as paid-for alternatives. Bitdefender’s premium version comes with parental controls, a file shredder, and a password manager, however its free version scored highly and comes with a firewall. Malwarebytes, whose free version was a top performer in our AV Test for 2023, was not able to pass our test of usability. Intego Mac Internet Security X9 offers a strong combination of tools (VirusBarrier and NetBarrier) which snuffed out the most malware threats in our test.