Seven More Free Antivirus Programs
We can never have too many options when it comes to antivirus protection. Right? If you're still using Norton, McAfee or some other expensive Internet security software, you owe it to yourself to check out these free alternatives. Read on to see my list, and some tips on choosing antivirus protection...
Save Money With a Free AntiVirus Alternative
In my related article Free AntiVirus Programs, I listed seven free Internet security options. Here are seven more free antivirus programs for you to try. Some are open-source, some proprietary. Some some are cloud-based, and rely on reports from their user communities to identify new threats. Check out the list that follows and see if one of these freebies can replace the paid antivirus software you're using now.
Trend Micro's HouseCall is an on-demand antivirus tool that scans your computer for viruses and other malware, and removes any detected threats. Housecall is capable of detecting and removing rootkits and other sophisticated threats, and uses Trend Micro's Smart Protection Network™ to identify the latest threats. The quick scan option targets critical system areas and active threats. Housecall is closely related to the paid Trend Micro Internet Security product, but does not include automatic updates, firewall, spyware detection, and spam blocking.
PCTools Free Antivirus offers basic antivirus protection and useful extras such as phishing alerts, Web site ratings, and adware defenses. Its IntelliGuard technology monitors nine critical areas of your system to detect and block suspicious behavior or software.
ClamWin Antivirus is a free, open-source antivirus program for Windows PCs. It integrates with Windows Explorer, Microsoft Outlook, and Internet Explorer to provide good basic antivirus protection without all the extra trimmings of premium packages. Scans can be run manually or scheduled. Virus signature databases are updated automatically. A simple tree view lets you select drives or directories for scanning. Suspected malware can be reported for manual handling, deleted automatically during scanning, or quarantined.
Immunet Protect is a free, cloud-based, community-powered antivirus solution. It’s very easy on system resources because most of its computation takes place in the cloud. Immunet takes up only 10 MB of disk space when installed. Data from registered Immunet users is used to keep the virus signature database up to date. Immunet uses the same open-source ClamAV engine used by ClamWin. For $24.95, the premium edition gives you offline scanning, email support, and advanced virus removal tools.
Some people prefer an open-source alternative because the program source code is available for inspection. This allows programmers to verify that there are no hidden privacy threats or backdoors in the program, and also enables a community-based approach to update and enhance the software.
Panda Cloud Antivirus Free provides more protections than Immunet, including real-time antivirus and antispyware, behavioral analysis protection, monitoring of running processes, and URL filtering for protection against rogue Web sites. The $29.99 Pro version adds a community-based firewall, protection for public WiFi, automatic vaccination of USB drives, and 24/7 support.
Fortinet's FortiClient works on both Windows and Mac computers, providing anti-virus protection, web filtering, and a firewall. It also offers vulnerability scanning to make sure your installed software is up to date and has all the latest security fixes. For travelers and business users, FortiClient also has SSL-VPN, which allows for a secure encrypted connection to a remote computer. FortiClient is designed to work with the company's FortiGate enterprise security gateway product, but the standalone client provides excellent protection for those who wish to use it outside a corporate environment.
Rising Antivirus Free Edition comes from Rising Security, China’s largest computer security firm. It protects your system against viruses, zero-day threats, Trojans, worms, and other malicious programs. It monitors email for malware, guards against rootkits, and protects against stealth delivery of malware via rogue Web sites. Should you be nervous about using internet security software from China? Maybe, but any software that's not open-source (see my comments above) carries the same risk of potential gotchas.
Will Free AntiVirus Programs Protect Me?
The fact that both free and paid internet security software options abound does beg the question. But in my experience, the free antivirus programs do an excellent job of protecting against the most common online threats. The reason for that is simple -- the free versions almost always use the same antivirus detection and removal engines as their paid counterparts. The downside is that you don't get all the bells and whistles -- such as enhanced firewall, identity theft protection, spam filtering, and customer support -- which are found in the all-in-one Internet security suites.
I encourage you to also read my Free AntiVirus Programs article, which lists seven more free antivirus alternatives, in addition to other free programs that you can use to cobble together your own Internet security suite. I also give links to some of the most popular paid programs, and discuss why you might want to consider them.
Do you use a free antivirus program or a paid version? Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 7 Nov 2012
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Seven More Free Antivirus Programs (Posted: 7 Nov 2012)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved