Antivirus software is a program that is designed to prevent, detect, and remove software viruses, and other software like harmful worms, trojans, adware, and more. Most of the antivirus software once installed, runs automatically in the background to provide real-time protection against any virus attacks. Some antivirus software also offers additional protection such as customizable firewalls and website blocking.
How does antivirus work?
Antivirus software begins its operations by checking your computer programs and files against a database of known types of malware. As we all know, new viruses are constantly created and distributed by hackers, so the antivirus software will also scan computers for the possibility of a new or unknown type of malware threat.
Most antivirus programs use three different detection devices:
- Specific detection, will only search and identify the known old malware.
- Generic detection will look for known parts, patterns, or types of malware that are related by a common codebase.
- Heuristic detection, which scans and searches for unknown viruses by identifying known suspicious file structures.
If a program finds a file that contains a virus, it will mostly quarantine the file and/or mark it for deletion, making it inaccessible and removing the risk to your device.
- Virus Protection: The main task of an antivirus program is to give protection against viruses and other forms of malware. The viruses will not only cause damages to your data, but they can also degrade the overall system performance. All of this can happen without your knowledge. The antivirus software installed on your computer detects and removes this malware before they cause any harm to your computer.
- Spyware Protection: Spywares are malware that spies on your computer stealing all the confidential information that includes credit card details, passwords, and other financial data. This information theft will ultimately lead to identity theft. The antivirus has the capability to stop or prevent these kinds of spyware attacks.
- Web Protection: While surfing the internet, users come across various other forms of threats. In any untrustworthy sites, cyber attackers can gather your credit card and bank account details. Antivirus software provides web protection and can protect your valuable information while surfing the web.
- Spam Protection: Viruses can also enter your computer through spam emails and ads. These emails and ads can show up many times even if you have no interest in them. Once the virus finds a way to sneak into your Computer System it starts causing irreversible damages. An Antivirus blocks all these spam emails and ads.
- Firewall Feature: Most antivirus programs have a firewall feature in them. An antivirus program with a firewall feature ensures 2-way protection to your computer system. This means that whatever information is sent or received will be double-checked here. Therefore, no hackers can dig any personal information from your system.
- Cost Effective: As we know there are many premium versions of antivirus programs for a monthly/yearly subscription fee, but there are some antivirus programs that are completely free of charge. These kinds of antivirus programs offer almost the same level of protection provided by the subscription-based antivirus.
- System Slowdown: Installing and running anti-virus software can use up a lot of computer memory & hard disk space as a result it can drastically slow down the overall speed of the computer. However, the scanning process can also cause lags in the network.
- No Complete Protection: If you are using a free antivirus program, there is no guarantee that it will provide you full protection from the virus. Most free AV programs only offer a basic level of protection. So, they are capable of identifying only certain types of threats. In order for acquiring a complete level of protection, you have to use a firewall as well.
- Frequent Advertisements: Apart from premium versions, free antivirus software needs to generate an income. Advertising is one of the ways to generate income. Most of the time these advertisements degrade user experience by showing up in between the work.
- No Customer Support: Free antivirus programs don’t get any customer support unless you pay for the premium version. If you encounter any problem, the only way to overcome it is through forums and knowledge bases.
Do You Really Need an Antivirus?
As we all know that Windows 10 comes with built-in antivirus and anti-malware tool (Windows Defender), it will provide you basic protection, but not be able to protect your web browsing activities and malicious links. You may accidentally click on a malicious link that downloads malware or adware onto your computer. So, Yes it is important to install this software that offers web protection or internet protection.
Microsoft Windows 10 is a widely used operating system in computers all over the world. If you have skills in Microsoft Windows 10 then you can get a Windows 10 Certification from StudySection which can help you in getting hired. A beginner level certification exam for newbies and an advanced level certification exam for experts is available on StudySection.