5 Of Your Biggest Antivirus Questions Answered
Confused by conflicting information about how to manage your internet security? Not sure what the difference is between all these different antivirus softwares? Wondering whether you should splash the cash on a paid version - or even to bother downloading it at all? Don’t panic! We’re here to answer your biggest antivirus questions.
1. How Do I Know Which Antivirus To Download?
Not all antivirus softwares are created equal. Options on the market range from very basic systems designed to catch common viruses, malware, trojans and the like right through to to complete internet security suites, complete with personal firewalls, anti-phishing and anti-spam tools, payment and banking protection, and dozens of other bells and whistles.
Some work only for Windows devices. Some work on Windows and Android. Some offer protection across Macs and iOS, too. It’s important to be clear on what you’re getting.
This means that you really don’t have to settle for an antivirus or security solution that doesn’t do exactly what you need it to do.
Do you have a lot of different devices that need securing? Pick an antivirus provider that offers multi-device subscriptions with remote device management. Concerned about keeping your kids safe online? Choose something that comes with parental locks, social media protection and other privacy features.
Whatever you’re most concerned about when it comes to internet security, there will be an antivirus and antimalware solution that ticks all the boxes. Choose carefully!
2. I Have A Mac. Do I Really Need Antivirus?
There’s a troubling rumour going around that somehow Apple products are immune to viruses. This just isn’t true. Lately, attacks on Macs and iPhones have stepped up, catching a lot of people off guard.
Not only are hackers developing new ways all the time to infiltrate Macs with malicious content, but Macs can cause security problems even when the viruses themselves only affect Windows operating systems.
That’s because Macs can act as carriers for viruses that attack Windows. If you’re opening emails or sharing folders with colleagues, customers or friends, you really need decent antivirus installed so that you don’t accidentally pass on something damaging to them.
And, of course, if you regularly download apps or shop/bank online, you need to be extra careful about keeping your sensitive data safe - something that the best internet security suites can certainly help with. If you have a Mac, you may want to purchase an antivirus software that has specifically aims to keep your Mac protected (view the best Antivirus software for Mac here).
3. Can I Use More Than One At A Time?
It’s a really bad idea to use more than one antivirus at once. Often they will clash, or the second antivirus will refuse to install at all once it detects that there is already an antivirus software on your system.
If you want to change to a new antivirus provider, make sure you uninstall the security suite you’re already using before you try to download or install the new one. That said, if you’re simply upgrading to the latest or a better version of the same product, you shouldn’t have any trouble.
4. Why Would I Pay For It When I Can Get It For Free?
Free versions of antivirus programs can be a useful stopgap, but there really isn’t any contest when it comes to how well they actually work.
At the end of the day, nothing like this is ever really free - remember that in a situation like this, if you’re not the customer, you’re probably the product. Perhaps you’re stuck with ads. Perhaps the company is using or selling on your personal details. Probably, you’ll be inundated with offers to upgrade or will only have partial access to the most useful features. Our advice is not to waste your time - choose a great product and invest in it upfront.
5. Will It Slow Down My Computer?
Only if you pick the wrong one for you. The very best antivirus softwares are designed to cause as little disruption as possible while they work.
Of course, any security suite is going to have to use up some memory - and that could potentially affect how well things run on your device. But different antivirus softwares are suited to different operating systems and tools, and making sure you pick something that’s optimized for your device and purposes will make all the difference.
If you’re unsure, make use of the various 30-Day and 60-Day free trial periods offered by antivirus companies and see how well they work for yourself.
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