Wednesday, 6 March 2013

The Antivirus Protection Dillema

Expert Author Brad S Jones
Antivirus protection has become as common as computers. Nearly every computer has some type of virus protection installed. The different flavors of protection packages vary almost as much as the different brands of computers. Typically there are only a few that are the most likely to end up on today's computer system.
Asking someone what their favorite antivirus program is invites an onslaught of different names that are usually accompanied by even more varied reasons. Some like Avast, AVG, or Microsoft System Essentials because of their cost, free. Others will spout off both popular and unpopular names like Norton, McAfee, Kaspersky, Trend Micro and others. If you ask the question why they have their particular antivirus package the answers are even more numerous than the software packages that exist.
Some people will quickly answer, "That's what came with my computer" while others say "That is what the person told me I should get when I bought the computer". The real reasons behind what type of antivirus is used typically falls into four popular categories, Availability, Usability, Popularity, and Cost. While Norton and McAfee have the luxury of being the most recognizable due to the fact of their age, they also have availability bolstering their users. Almost every computer on the market today is accompanied by some type of trial package of these two antivirus packages.
Other brands of antivirus protection are acquired through the process of people asking friends and other Internet users what the best antivirus to have is, or through any of the thousands of "REVIEW" sites that have populated the Internet today. The question is, are these the most reliable sources to rely on for such an important decision?
Typically, friends and other Internet users are offering their view from personal experience. If they have a particular software package installed, have had none or only a few malware or virus problems and have an easy time operating the software it is a good choice in their perspective. Review sites that are found on the Internet are usually "Affiliate" driven meaning when you choose to click on one of the packages they are suggesting from their website they are compensated by the company you choose to go with.
The personal experience perspective is not necessarily bad to use when making a decision it is not usually based on broad experience or intense research. The typical review site found on the Internet while not always bad is usually offering a biased view toward what antivirus package is best. Which presents the question of how in the world does one make an informed decision on the type of antivirus software to choose?
Antivirus software falls into two main categories, Free and Paid. Under these categories you will likely notice they fall into subcategories, Antivirus Protection and Security Suites. In the Free category finding a security suite is not likely. Typically the focus of just protecting you from malware and viruses is the goal with insertion of subtle to blatant prompting of purchasing the paid version of the software. In the paid category security suites are usually the antivirus software combined with the companies version of a firewall, online backup and other types of services.
One category that has yet to be mentioned here and that is becoming increasingly popular is Managed Antivirus protection. Large companies employ an IT staff to keep a watchful eye on their computers. Duties include a multitude of different things from computer installation, network monitoring, and typical software installation and repair. In order to effectively monitor and service hundreds or even thousands of computers at a time IT specialists employ specialized software that keeps a constant eye on each computer system alerting the IT staff when problems are detected.
This style of computer care is becoming increasingly popular in the consumer market. Offering extensively researched and honed antivirus software like Vipre Business, and system health monitoring agents computer technicians are now capable of offering affordable protection with the added benefit of having that computer tech standing ready to assist when problems are detected.
The reason the managed computer care concept has always been seen as a business only type of service before now is due to the past costs that were associated with this type of protection and service. Recent technology has made it possible for this type of service to be made available to the regular consumer at a cost that is competitive and in many instances even less expensive than the popular retail antivirus software currently available.
Having not only advanced protection from viruses, but the addition of a qualified technician ready to help you in the event that problems present themselves without the need for you to carry your computer into the nearest computer store and wait for sometimes weeks for it to be returned, not to mention the saving of the average virus removal price of $169 is more than a good reason to consider the managed antivirus choice more closely when deciding what type of protection to employ on your home and personal computer systems.
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