It’s essential to use PC virus protection software to protect your valuable data and programs – choose the one that fits your needs as a computer user.
If you use Microsoft’s Windows you absolutely must install a quality PC virus protection software. Why? Because with Windows Operating System (OS) having about 75% of the market cyber criminals are focusing their malware creation efforts mainly towards this OS.
Here’s our top 10 list of the most popular computer virus protection programs – as of 2011 – and their main features and benefits.
1. Norton PC Security Software
Symantec’s PC virus protection software suite – Norton Anti Virus, Norton Internet Security and Norton 360 – is one of the best paid-license antivirus suites available. You benefit from impressive benchmarks, a tight integration of behavioral detection, and an easy access to web-based premium features.
These Symantec products are a robust security option that you can trust.
2. Trend Micro Anti Virus
Trend Micro has completely overhauled its PC virus protection software, now named Titanium. The new version brings a new cloud-based detection engine, a new and easy to use interface and more powerful features. These changes of Trend Micro anti virus are as impressive as those that Norton has gone through the past couple of years.
Titanium offers you a faster suite with a smaller system impact, best if you’re a Netbook user.
3. AVG PC Virus Protection
The new version of PC security software AVG offers better usability, faster scans, and better overall performance compared to its previous versions. And yes, it does install more quickly, the scans are faster, and some tweaks to the interface have made it easier to use.
However, the changes to the engine that powers the detection and removal of threats are not proven yet so it’s hard to come to a final conclusion on its performance.
4. McAfee PC Security Software
Like most providers of computer virus protection programs, McAfee has also redesigned its line of PC virus protection software last year. The biggest feature update is called Artemis and it’s McAfee’s real-time defense engine scanning downloads as they occur. The scans include using real-time URL, IP address, and domain name data in conjunction with blacklists, white lists, and cloud analysis. In plain English, Artemis evaluates downloads for threats before they even land on your hard drive, so your safety is ensured.
5. avast! Virus Protection
avast! PC virus protection software is a simple to use software with multiple guards. The anti virus, anti spyware, and heuristics engines form a security core that includes multiple real-time shields: adjustable mail and file system shields, behavior, network, instant messaging, peer-to-peer (P2P), script, and Web shields. New features of avast! virus protection software include a silent/gaming mode, a testing sandbox, a firewall, anti spam measures, and an “intelligent scanner” (white listing) that only looks at changed files after establishing a baseline.
If you choose avast! you’ll be using one of the most tried and trusted PC anti virus products.
6. Nod 32 Virus Protection
ESET’s NOD32 Version 4 of the successful virus and spyware protection software builds on its excellent reputation of computer virus protection programs. One of the core shields of this PC security software is its community-sourced ThreatSense which prevents attacks before they occur. NOD32 has an easy to use interface and some of the highest virus detection rates. This – beside low rates of false positives – makes NOD32 one of the most effective computer virus protection programs.
7. BitDefender Antivirus
Following the trend of most major security suites, BitDefender improved its anti virus scanning technology by moving most of the scan to the cloud, where behavioral detection has proven to be more effective at stopping threats than the traditional virus definition files.
BitDefender’s PC virus protection software gives you a wide selection of tools and options: anti-malware detection and removal engines, phishing protection, multiple scan levels, firewall, file encryption, chat encryption, spam guard, parental controls, system performance optimizer, and online backup.
8. Free Microsoft Virus Protection
If you are a home user or have a business with less than 10 Windows desktops, you qualify to use the free Microsoft virus protection. Microsoft provides a newer application called Microsoft Security Essentials. MSE uses both definition-file and real-time defenses against viruses and spyware, and also gives you rootkit protection.
A really nice feature of the free Microsoft virus protection program is that you can limit the CPU load during scans down to 20% (under the Settings customization), making it almost unnoticeable.
9. ZoneAlarm PC Security Software
There’s a lot you can get out of ZoneAlarm PC virus protection software. From its good anti virus protection and its well-known firewall systems, to web browsing protection, system tune-up tools, backup options, antiphishing technology, parental control package, and an installation that is quite user-friendly, the suite is effective, although not necessarily the best of all computer virus protection programs.