Eight features to expect in the best antivirus software

Sadly, robust antivirus software is now a necessity in the modern world. At this point in time “OK” is not good enough, in fact, “good” is not good enough. You need absolute top-quality antivirus software. Here are eight features to expect in the best antivirus software.


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Regular updates

This may be the single, most important feature of any antivirus program, although it may not be immediately obvious (especially if the software is really well-written). New viruses are being developed all the time and antivirus companies are in a constant rush to stay ahead of them. They are also constantly updating their products to ensure that they continue to provide effective protection against even the newest threats. The best antivirus products will do this quietly and discreetly in the background, i.e. without slowing down your computer, however you will still be able to see the date (and sometimes the time) of the last update somewhere in your settings if you check.

A firewall

Firewalls basically stand between your computer and the internet. They monitor traffic for signs of suspicious activity. In the old days, firewalls and antivirus products were often viewed completely separately, but these days, the two are often integrated as they work hand-in-hand to protect you from online threats.

Protection against spam

Spam is more than an inconvenience. It’s a way in which viruses are spread. By this point in time everyone should know better than to click on links or open attachments unless they are 100% sure that they know and trust the sender, but, leaving aside the fact that there is a difference between “should know” and “does know”, the simple fact of life is that people make mistakes, especially when they’re busy. It therefore makes sense to limit the opportunity for accidents to happen and do everything possible to keep spam from hitting people’s inboxes.

Browsing alerts

Some antivirus programs will warn users if their browsing looks like it could lead them into trouble. In particular, they will flag up search results and links which point to questionable websites.

Ransomware protection

Ransomware is a relatively new threat, but it is arguably one of the most serious threats out there. Basically ransomware, as its name suggests, literally holds your digital possessions hostage and if it takes hold, normally, the only way you can secure their release is to pay a ransom. You will usually be given a deadline by which the ransom must be paid, precisely to stop you from having time to combat the ransomware. It’s also worth noting that anything attached to your computer can be attacked so, for example, saving content to an external drive will not help (at least not unless you keep it disconnected except when you are actively using it). A robust antivirus, however, absolutely will.

The ability to clean up viruses

This may seem like a bit of a contradiction given that the purpose of an antivirus is to stop viruses getting into a computer in the first place, however an antivirus can only really prevent the installation of a virus from an online source. There is a limit to what it can do if someone has physical access to a computer and installs one from an offline medium (either by accident or malice). A good antivirus will, however, quickly detect that something is wrong and attempt to fix the problem. The safest approach to doing this is to quarantine the virus (often known as putting it into a sandbox) so that any infection is contained and the antivirus can get to work on it without the risk of the infection being spread further.

Stability

As a minimum, an antivirus should be able to operate without causing issues with your computer or excessively slowing it down. In some cases, a certain level of slowdown will be almost unavoidable, for example if you’re performing a deep-level scan of an older computer, but this should be the exception rather than the rule. Some anti-virus software will even make suggestions as to how to improve the performance of your PC.

Parental controls

Parental controls are, obviously, useful for parents, but they are also handy for adult children who now want to help out their own parents. Basically, they are essentially just a way for more tech-savvy users to protect those who aren’t as security-conscious. Having said that, some parental controls are clearly designed with parents and children in mind. For example, some antivirus products allow parents to control (read restrict) how when and for how long their children can go online.

Comodo antivirus provides outstanding protection for an unbeatable price

Comodo has been in the security business for over twenty years and they have put all that experience into the creation of an industry-leading antivirus product to keep everyone safe online. There’s too many features to list, but you can head over to Comodo to learn more about it for yourself.

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