In theory, free antivirus software is a GREAT idea! Does anyone actually enjoy parting with their hard-earned cash? I know I don’t. That’s why in the past I used a variety of different free antivirus software, trying to find one that would protect me and my personal computer. I even thought I had found it a few times. First with Avira, then with Avast. Both seemed to be protecting my machine, but Avira bugged me to upgrade to their paid platform way too often. Overall I had been mostly happy with Avast until I was given a free trial of Emsisoft Anti-Malware. When I installed it and ran a scan, it found 6 pieces of malware that Avast hadn’t picked up.
This scared me a bit. I thought I had been protected. I learned a pretty valuable lesson. That malware software had been sitting there, on my hard drive, doing who knows what! And the worst part was that I thought I was protected. I figured I had nothing to worry about because I was smart. I found some free antivirus software and was good to go. I’m sure without the free antivirus, I would be worst off. I’d have been much more infected. But knowing some of the things that malware is capable of, I don’t want ANY of it on my system!
Ultimately, free antivirus software is only a good protection if you compare it to not running ANY antivirus software at all. It’s my experience that some free antivirus software was good once upon a time. AVG used to put out a really decent free antivirus program. It was among the best at the time, but then they slowly removed some parts of the software and moved them to a paid program. The types of attacks changed as well and soon, AVG free and other free antivirus software programs ceased to offer enough protection for the average user.
Most free antivirus programs even come with potentially unwanted programs (or PUPs) that get installed alongside the program onto your PC. These are programs that you didn’t ask for, you may never use but begin taking up precious resources on your computer. Some are even malicious in nature, harming your PC, harvesting your data and information and selling it to third parties. To learn more about the ways these programs exploit their users, click here to read this article from Emsisoft. Remember, when the Antivirus Product is free, the real product is you.
After trying Emsisoft, I won’t be returning to a free antivirus any time soon. And my six pieces of malware weren’t bad compared to some clients I have scanned after they ran with free antivirus. I’ve seen one machine with 97 pieces of malware that Avast and even McAfee (A paid product, and yes there were running BOTH) didn’t pick up.
If you are running a free antivirus software, or don’t know if the paid software you are using is doing a good enough job, why not book an appointment with Y-Not Tech Services to make sure you’re protected!
Why not let Tony handle it?
Give us a call at 403-915-8574