Antivirus and Internet Security Buyers’ Guide

With hacking costing global economy over hundreds of billions of dollar every year, you will do well to ensure you’re adequately protected whenever you’re online. This is no time to leave your security to your ISP and government agencies. You must understand what internet security is and what steps and tools you need to ensure you don’t fall victims to malware and other online threats.

In this post, I’ll like to talk about antivirus and internet security and how, amidst vast choice, you can find the perfect tool for your online security.

Contents:

  • Introduction
  • Difference between Antivirus and Internet Security
  • Why is Internet Security important?
  • Is there Antivirus Software for Mac
  • Internet Security for iPad Air
  • Internet Security for Kindle Fire
  • What Antivirus work best with Windows 10
  • Antivirus for Windows 7
  • General Considerations before buying Antivirus or Internet Security
  • Conclusion

Norton Kindle Tablet Security


Dr. Web Antivirus


Avast Scurity


Malwarebytes

AVG Antivirus


 

Difference between Antivirus and Internet Security

Most times, when people talk about internet security or antivirus, they meant to say the same thing. The two words are often used by a lot of people to refer to the same thing.

But there is a difference between an antivirus and internet security software. The major dissimilarity lies in the way they function.

Traditionally, an antivirus is software you install on your personal computer that protects you from malicious programs.In function, an antivirus is a limited piece of software. It is designed to prevent your computer from getting infected. Some come with the capability to detect and remove viruses from already-infected computer.

During the early stages of computing, infection by computer viruses is less common since they can only be spread by floppy disks.With the advent of the internet, however, computer viruses spread rapidly. And with this increase came a whole new type of threats. Now, antivirus has to do more than their traditional tasks.

This is how internet security was born. Internet security applications work in real time and defend a device against all forms of attack.

Why is Internet Security important?

Today, the internet is re-defining the way we live our lives. In the advanced nations of the world, the internet has become an inseparable part of daily living. Even in developing countries, internet usage is increasing at a fast rate.

With the increased internet culture comes a high level of threats. Scammers and fraudsters abound online and are devising novel methods to defraud internet users.

Whether from home or workplace, whenever you connect your computer or any internet-enabled device online today, the risk potential is enormous. In addition to virus, malware, ransomeware, spyware, phishing which you probably know there are few threats I’ll like to talk about here:

Browser Helper Objects (BHO):

These came about in 1997 and were introduced to facilitate added functionality to web browsers especially Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. But criminal elements can take advantage of certain lapses in the way a BHO operates and its unrestricted access to harvest personal information of internet users.

Browser Hijacker:

This malware is meant to change a web surfer’s browser settings without permission in order to display unwanted advertisements. By replacing an existing page on a user’s browser, a hijacker increases visitors to the hijacker’s website in order to increase revenue.

Keyloggers:

Keyloggers are either software or hardware designed to capture the keys struck by a user on a keyboard.  Keyloggers are legitimate programs that have been turned into negative usage by dubious elements to steal personal and confidential information from unsuspecting people.

Whether you use the internet for personal or business purposes, you must invest in a good internet security system.There are already landmark innovations when it comes to internet security. Governments and agencies all over the globe are constantly collaborating to reduce risk to users.

Is there Antivirus for Mac?

Because Mac systems don’t suffer the same vulnerabilities as Windows-based devices, it’s easy for users to become over-confident and think they don’t need antivirus.

Yes, it’s true to a certain degree. When it comes to susceptibility Mac has two strong factors working in its favor. The first is, at any point in time, there are fewer Macs than Windows PC. Macs are seen as high-endproducts. The low-income people, which make up the majority of the world population, tends to go for Windows system since they tend to be cheaper. This makes iteasier for hackers and the likes to exploit Windows systems than Macs.

Another reason is the operating system on Macs is based on Unix. Unix has some inherent security features. But this doesn’t mean Macs don’t need extra protection.

In fact, in 2017, many individuals and enterprises who are known to use Macs suffer major disruptions due to malware attacks. This is because online criminals are becoming smarter and are devising new ways to penetrate the seemingly impregnable wall of security that Apple devices are famous for.

Internet Security for iPad Air

Why do I need internet security for my Ipad when it boasts of one of the most secured operating systems in the world – the iOS?

This is one question often asked by many Ipad users. But as recent happenings have shown us, you need to take the security of your device seriously especially when you use it for online transactions.

The truth is, when it comes to internet safety, there are no more 100 percent-secured platforms. There was the issue of the Wirelurker that infects ipads with malicious software when the device is connected to an already infected Mac. Stories also abound about Ipad becoming infected through email and text messages.

With that said, you should know that Ipad Air is still one of the most protected devices in use today. You needn’t worry much about malware wreaking havoc on your device. What you should try to avoid are actions that can expose your Ipad Air to threats online.

Things that can expose your iPad to online threats:

Failure to install latest updates

When it comes to operating systems, hackers and other criminals are always looking for holes to exploit and they often find this. That is why device manufacturers regularly release updates to patch any hole before the knowledge becomes widespread. So, if you don’t always install the latest updates for your iPad, you are exposing yourself to malware.

Jailbreaking is a No-No

For the few that know what they’re doing, jailbreaking opens your device to a new world of possibilities. But for the rest of us ordinary users, it’s a no-go area.

Jailbreaking can create endless vulnerability issues for your iPad. Granted, there are numerous online resources to manage jailbrokendevices,maintenance of such devices requires extra efforts on a user’s part. Many of us will be better off leaving our device as it is.

Apple regularly releases updates for the iPad. The problem with users of jailbrokeniPads is that they don’t install the updates often as doing that will make them lose thejailbreak and which willmake them start the jailbreaking process all over again.

Plugging your iPad into an unknown computer is a huge risk

The Wirelurker malware mentioned earlier enters the victim’s iPad through USB connection to a macOS computer that has been infected. This tells us that connecting your iPad to unknown computers can increase the risk of getting infected with malware.

Internet Security for Kindle Fire

It’s so easy to think that because the Kindle Fire is first and foremost a reading device, you don’t need internet security for it. Yes, that is true to a certain extent, if all you do on your Kindle is to read and download books from the Kindle Store. But who does only that nowadays? There are boatloadsof things you can do with your Kindle Fire and many of these require you to use the internet.

Another thing is, since the Kindle Fire readily connects to your computer through USB, the possibility of getting infected with malware is high.

Kindle devices use a form of the Android operating system. The last time I checked, Android is still top on the list of operating system targeted most by malware developers.

So, you will agree with me that if there is anything you do that’s outside the basic function of using your Kindle to read, then it’s better if you have antivirus or internet security installed on your device.

So, which are the best internet security apps for Kindle Fire in 2018?

  1. Norton Kindle Tablet Security

One internet security app specially designed with your Kindle Fire in mind is the Norton Kindle Tablet Security. One thing I love about this app is that it updates its virus definition every week to make sure you are protected from new threats. Another good feature is its automatic scanning of any downloaded file. You can also scan your device instantly or schedule the scan.

  1. Avast Security

Avast Security and Antivirus is an amazing app for the security of your Kindle Fire. This is more than a basic security app in that it checks the permissions of apps you’ve already installed. It can also, through the Boost RAM feature, shut down apps that are currently in use for a faster browsing experience. And if there is any app you want to restrict access to, you can lock such apps using the Avast Security.

  1. Malwarebytes Anti-Malware

Here comes another heavyweight when it comes to internet security for your Kindle Fire. As a testament to the efficiency of this anti-malware app, it’s one of the most downloaded security appson Amazon Appstore. The Malwarebytes anti-malware app comes with lots of features to protect and manage your Kindle device. Its concise interface will help you to detect and eliminate malicious application, notify you of any security issue and expose apps attempting to access confidential information. For installed apps, it allows you to check their privacy permissions and give you the option to turn off permission to install apps of unknown origin.

  1. Dr. Web Antivirus

Dr. Web Antivirus is an under-utilized app that packs some excellent functions when it comes to the internet security of your Kindle Fire. This free anti-virus is made by a Russian security giant, Dr. Web Ltd. The app frequently updates its virus data. It scans newly installed apps automatically and quarantines any potential threats. With Dr. Web, you can specify the particular fileor folder you want to scan. It also keeps the statistics of threats discovered and all the actions you regularly performs to keep you updated.

  1. AVG Antivirus

If you’re looking for more than an antivirus but something that will allow you to manage your apps and media, then go for the AVG Antivirus. Other than ensuring safe browsing and keeping your device from viruses, this app can lock specific apps to restrict their access and also limit access to your photos. You will come to love the virus alert warning whenever a threat is detected. Though the AVG Antivirus app comes in both free and paid version, the free version comes with a lot of features that will be sufficient for most users. It will protect your device from spyware, Trojans, viruses and malware.

What antivirus works best with Windows 10?

When it comes to security for your PC, I think the question to ask, like many users, is “Do I need Internet Security with Windows 10?”

Unlike Windows 7, Windows 10 has already been bundled with a powerful antivirus from Microsoft called Windows Defender. Though it doesn’t come with the paraphernalia of the major antivirus out there, it gets the job done nonetheless. And it does that in a rather unobtrusive way.

But nowadays, you need more than traditional antivirus to fight off active threats like ransomware, adware and spyware. That is why many online security experts are preaching a 2-front fight against malware. That is, you should combine your antivirus with a good anti-malware.

What this means for Windows 10 users is that if you’re sticking withWindows Defender as your basic antivirus application, look for a good anti-malware software for total protection from all forms of threats.

One criticism against Windows Defender is that its protection against malware is limited to Microsoft browsers. That it offers no security for third-party browsers. If you’re not fine with the Windows Defender as an antivirus, let’s look at some of the best antivirus applications for Windows 10.

Best Antivirus for Windows 10

AhnLab V3 Internet Security:

That the AhnLab V3 Internet Security is a top security software is not up for argument. For an application to be winning accolades month in, month out on AV-Test.org is no small achievement. This software has been thoroughly tested based on 3 factors: protection, performance and usability, and it always comes out top.

BitDefender Internet Security:

If there’s anything like the best cheap internet security then the BitDefender Internet Security suite deserves that honor. With their regular promotions, you can get this suite at a giveaway price.BitDefender does the job of protecting you online very well. It comes with some cool features like enhanced parental control, file encryption, email spam filter, etc.

Avast Free Antivirus:

One thing Avast Antivirus knows how to do well is to protect your computer from major threats. Yes, it may disturb you sometimes to install applications you don’t need but that is optional and it still does a wonderful job of keeping you safe online.

AVG Internet Security:

One good thing about the AVG Internet Security, also owned by Avast, is that it can protect a fair number of devices within a household. For macOS devices, it offers only a basic protection. But Android and Windows users will come to love its comprehensive security cover. It also comes with some bonus features.

Avira Antivirus Pro

Avira has been taking care of computer virus since 1986 and deserve a mention in this post. The company offers a couple of security applications but what we’re concerned with here is their Antivirus which is something you can consider if you don’t want to spend much money on antivirus.

For the anti-malware to combine with any of the above-mentioned software, go for Malwarebytes Anti-Malware.

 Antivirus for Windows 7

Windows 7, the once most popular Windows operating system which was recently dethroned by Windows 10, doesn’t get the valuable online and phone support from Microsoft anymore. It now only receives security patches.

This landmark OS is still being used in large parts of the globe. Knowing fully well the security issues often faced by Windows software, how do users ensure they’re not exposed to unnecessary threats online while using the 8-year old operating system?

You should know that Windows 7 comes coupled with a security module. But this is inadequate and doesn’t offer the kind of security we need online.

Basically, you will need a powerful combination of antivirus and anti-malware as have been previously discussed in this post. Any of the security software recommended for Windows 10 will also work well for Windows 7.  But you will still need to do your own diligence since some of this software may raise performance and compatibility issues for Windows 7 if your computer specifications are not up to par.

Here, let me review one antivirus that I’ve not touched in this post but that works perfectly for Windows 7.

Kaspersky Antivirus, Internet Security and Total Security

Kaspersky, the award-winning firm from Russia, offers three computing security solutions. The first is the Kaspersky Antivirus, a basic antivirus which works well to protect the data on your computer. There is also the Kaspersky Internet Security and Kaspersky Total Security. Analysts have argued that since Kaspersky Antivirus doesn’t do more than what a lot of free antivirus programs do, using any of the latter two is where the real deal lies.

Kaspersky Internet Security and Total Security come with some excellent features and they’re a perfect fit for Windows 7-based computers.

Webcam protection, secure browser and parental controls are some of the features you will have access to when you buy any of the two. There is also anti-spam control, microphone protection and a special browser to protect your online banking transactions.

The edge that the Total Security has over the Internet Security suite is that it comes additionally with file encryption, password manager, more advanced parental control and file shredding. It is also bundled with automatic backup software giving you 2GB online storage from Dropbox.

General considerations before buying an antivirus

  1. Price

There are many free antivirus programs out there that worksvery well. But if you want something more, or that which will give you some extra icing on the cake, then be ready to shell out something from your pocket.

I should let you know here that, how costly antivirus software is doesn’t determine how efficient it works. It is common knowledge that some free versions from big players in internet security work far better than a lot of paid antivirus software.

If you’re limited for cash and you don’t do much on your device in terms of buying stuff online or transacting business then you can definitely go for some free version of apps like Avast, BitDefender, AVG, Avira and Malwarebytes Anti-malware.But if you do more that, be ready to pay for the paid version even if it’s just to enjoy adequate support from the manufacturers.

  1. Features and Functions

This is another important factor you must not overlook before putting down money on an anti-virus. With many internet security software coming with a truckload of features, you must understand what you will be getting for your money.Some of the questions you should be asking are:

  • Does this come with email security?
  • Can I schedule a scan?

Let me help you more with this. Any good internet security software nowadays should come with most of the following features:

  • Antivirus
  • Anti-malware
  • Anti-spyware
  • Anti-phishing
  • Email scans

As extra, your antivirus software should be able to scan compressed files, block potentially dangerous websites, auto-clean infected files among a host of other things.

  1. Performance

If you’re buying the latest antivirus for your old computer, you must first check if the system will work well with the antivirus. One way to do this is to install the trial version of the antivirus software and use it for sometime.

Why this is necessary is that there is a difference in the way each antivirus use system resources. Some require a large number of system resources to function which can cause speed and compatibility issues for your device. Some only require the minimal resources and will no way affect the performance of your computer.

Conclusion

I have outlined the latest trend in choosing the best antivirus and internet security software.The truth is, as governments all over the world and security companies spend a huge sums of money to combat online threats, online criminals are also devising new strategies to steal your money, data and privacy.

Be security conscious.

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