Types of Antivirus Software

By Chris Yokum

Computer systems allow you to perform many tasks that increase your productivity. Managing your checking accounts through online banking, applying for jobs and exchanging business documents are only a few of the things that can be done with a reliable computer and Internet connection. An antivirus software can easily stop unauthorized access to your computer system when performing many of your usual online activities.

Function

Antivirus software is used to detect harmful viruses and other spyware on a computer system. Hackers frequently embed viruses on popular websites to infect the computer of anyone that visits their website. You'll need to locate a suitable type of antivirus software to stop them from invading your computer system unknowingly. With antivirus software, viruses and spyware will be properly removed from your infected computer system to protect your important data. Most antivirus software programs can usefully identify common and uncommon malware applications that have been unwittingly installed on a computer system.

Features

Antivirus software have the capability of searching an entire file on a computer system. Instead of just looking at a small section of an existing computer file, the antivirus software thoroughly analyzes it. This prevents viruses, spyware, and malware from hiding on your computer system and compromising the data stored on it. On-access scanning is another useful feature of many antivirus software. The real time protection will notify you of any irregular file activity that may indicate your computer system has been infected. Virus removal features are also included in antivirus software to take them off your current computer system. With frequent virus database updates, your antivirus software will effectively keep track of the latest threats that could harm your computer system.

Types

There are a large number of antivirus software programs available. Some are free to use and others will cost you a specific fee to gain access to their virus-protecting features. AVG AntiVirus Free can be downloaded from its homepage and installed on your computer system to begin the protection process. There's no cost to use this antivirus software and it frequently updates itself from the latest virus threat. Bitdefender Free Edition is another totally free antivirus program that will protect your computer system from viruses, spyware and other malware. Download this program to your computer by navigating to the Bitdefender website. Norton Antivirus has built-in features to prevent spyware, viruses or malicious software from exposing personal information located on your computer system. For a fee, you'll be able to purchase the Norton Antivirus software to analyze and detect computer threats. (See Resources.)

Misconceptions

Although there are multiple types of antivirus software to help keep your computer system safe, you shouldn't use more than one at a time. Having several antivirus software programs installed on a single computer system will expose it to vulnerabilities. A missed malicious file could cause your entire computer system to crash or prevent it from accessing a stable Internet connection. Instead of tracking a virus threat, each antivirus software will prevent the other from correctly functioning.

Warning

If you don't update your antivirus software to its most recent version, it will not effectively protect your computer system. Activate the feature that allows automatic connection to the Internet for virus database updates. This can usually be done by accessing the "Settings" feature within your antivirus software.