Saturday, November 17, 2007

How Can Anti-Virus Software Keep My Data Safe?

How Can Anti-Virus Software Keep My Data Safe?
It’s getting harder everyday to protect your data from the dangers posed by computer viruses. These malicious programs have evolved into multiple forms and can be contracted through a variety of ways, including opening email attachments, clicking on spam or by visiting corrupt websites.

Fortunately, just as viruses have grown in strength and complexity over the years, so also have the tools used to combat them. With the latest generation of anti-virus software, you can give your computer a level of protection never before possible.

Today’s best anti-virus software come with multiple virus scans, allowing you to schedule scans in advance, giving you access to a variety of location-specific scans and even real-time scanning, which scan your computer every few minutes for viruses—stopping them before they can do damage.

And, since new viruses are being created everyday, the most effective anti-virus programs offers convenient virus updates. Some software even offer automatic updates, which regularly and automatically check back with the manufacturer for information on new viruses, providing you the highest-level of protection at all times.

However, undeniably, the most valuable thing that today’s anti-virus software brings to its consumers is plain, good-old-fashion peace of mind.
What to look for in Anti-Virus Software?
Top anti-virus software should be easy enough for a computer novice to both use and install. The software should effectively seek out and identify virus threats, as well as clean or isolate infected files. There should be understandable reporting available for each scan and plenty of help support available, so you can be well informed of the software’s activities and capabilities. Below are the criteria TopTenREVIEWS used to evaluate anti-virus software.

Ease of Use –Exceptional anti-virus software is simple to use, regardless of a person’s computer experience or knowledge of viruses.
Effective at Identifying Viruses and Worms – The best anti-virus products identify infected files quickly through real-time scanning, searching for viruses in a multitude of sources, including email, instant message applications, web browsing and so on.
Effective at Cleaning or Isolating Infected Files –Truly capable anti-virus software thoroughly cleans, deletes or quarantines infected files—keeping them from spreading throughout the hard drive or network.
Activity Reporting – Anti-virus programs should give immediate notification of viruses found by real-time scanners and should provide an easy-to-read report of scan results, including what it found and what it did with infected files.
Feature Set – A well-rounded feature set allows anti-virus software to provide absolute protection. The best programs are those that offer a wide variety of tools, from basic real-time scanning to more advanced, heuristic scanning and script blocking—when it comes to virus protection, the more options the better.
Ease of Installation and Setup – Anti-virus programs should be a breeze to install, making it easy to go from installation to initial scan in just a couple clicks of the mouse.
Help Documentation – High-end anti-virus software come with plenty of help, including support via email, online chat or over the telephone. There should also be online resources, such as knowledge bases and FAQs available for quick and convenient help.
So, no matter how serious a computer virus is or how quickly it is passed around, with today’s anti-virus software, you’ll always have a cure