Anti-virus software includes a number of programs designed to scan your computer’s hard drive for intrusions, viruses and different types of malware. It also helps to prevent these programs from being downloaded onto your computer. The software then may carry out functions to delete or quarantine the infectious files. Computer viruses can be a dangerous threat to computers, but not all anti-virus software is full-proof and without cons. Although the benefits of anti-virus software outweigh the consequences of malware, sometimes anti-virus programs block access to legitimate programs. If you cannot download a file or run it properly, it may be due to anti-virus software running in the background.
- Stops most viruses coming into your computer
- Keeps computer in safe working order
- Secures computer from other malware
- Certain ones are free
- Keeps you safe online
- Costs money (usually).
- Can hog system resources and slow your computer down, or make it more likely to crash or freeze.
- Can stop certain applications from working – often you have to disable antivirus to install certain apps.
- Can give a false sense of security – antivirus software doesn’t protect against all malware.
- Can give false positives (tells you something is a virus when really it isn’t).
Compared to the cons of having a virus though, these cons are not so bad! But not everyone needs a special Anti-virus program i personally recommend Windows defender (MS Security Essentials) on Windows & Avira on Mac OS they do their job and don’t usually affect operating of system.
A few tips to be safe from online threats
- Don’t click on links or attachments in emails unless you specifically requested them.
- Be wary of anything that sounds too good (or too bad) to be true. If you get a scary email about one of your accounts, log into your account by manually typing the web address or use a favorite/bookmark (do NOT use any links provided!) and look for alerts there. You can also search snopes.com to check for known hoaxes and scams.
- Use unique, strong passwords for each of your web accounts. Use a password manager like LastPass to generate and manage those passwords.
- Keep your operating system and apps up to date. This includes smartphones and tablets.
- Back up all your files.
- Use an ad-blocker. Unfortunately, bad guys are slipping malware into ad networks. I use both uBlock Origin and Privacy Badger.