As a freelance professional, you depend on your computer for your livelihood. More than any other kind of computer user, you need to make sure that that computer (and the information on it) is safe and secure.
Unfortunately, in the online world where most of us do our work there are a few threats to our livelihood. I’m talking about those threats that come in the form of computer viruses and malware, which we might download automatically from a site or through an email attachment.
If you’re working on a machine with an MS Windows or Vista operating system, that threat is particularly likely. Depending on how active you are online, it may not be a question of whether you’ll ever encounter computer malware, but rather, a question of when.
Fortunately, there is a wide variety of software available to protect your computer, and your livelihood. In this post, I list eleven of the most popular antivirus packages and provide a brief description of each. Many of these packages also include a free version, a trial version, or other free services. Although, to get maximum protection you’ll want to purchase a full application.
Eleven Computer Security Apps
Here are eleven companies (listed in alphabetical order) that offer computer security applications to help protect your computer.
- AVAST–Avast provides an easy-to-use application that works well. Some reviewers report that it slows performance.
- AVG–AVG is considered a good security option by most reviewers, although many report that the anti-phishing capabilities are weak. (Phishing applications are programs that try to capture your personal information) The company also offers free identity-theft recovery help.
- ESET–ESET claims to be able to detect threats before other computer security packages. Includes the ESET Threat Center, which provides information about malware and other threats.
- F-Secure–The F-Secure site offers free health check and online scanner tools. The company has been in business for twenty years.
- G Data–Some reviewers complained about the amount of system resources that the G Data suite used. Although not well known the package is comparable to others on the market.
- Kaspersky–The application from an industry leader is a full-featured security suite. Some reviewers complained that the package is difficult to use. The site offers a free antivirus scan.
- McAfee–This well-known company does a good job of protecting your PC against the traditional types of malware. According to reviewers, it did not do quite as well with non-traditional, non-signature based malware.
- Norton–This is a very highly regarded internet security company with a variety of programs.
- Vipre–Their popular anti-malware package includes a firewall. The application uses a relatively small amount of RAM. However, some reviewers have commented that the protection against phishing schemes is weak.
- Webroot–Webroot offers internet security or corporate security products. Some reviewers reported a system slowdown.
- ZoneAlarm–Internet security package offers good basic features.
Even If You Have a Mac…
While you may feel that your machine is relative secure (and it probably is), there’s still the possibility that you could unknowingly pass a virus along through an email. And, if there’s anything worse than getting a virus, it’s passing one along to a client or colleague.
Fortunately, there are a few internet security packages available for the Mac:
- Intego–According to the reviewers, this package is very effective, although the reporting features could be better.
- Norton–Reviewers loved this package.
It Happened to Me
A few weeks ago, I accidentally downloaded a computer virus through an email attachment. With my workload, the results could have been devastating.
Fortunately, my antivirus program caught it and neutralized it before any damage could be done. I was lucky.
Have you been impacted by a computer virus? What is your favorite internet security package?
Share your answers in the comments.
Image by Don Hankins