Published on November 4th, 2012 | by admin


How ‘Good’ are the Free Antivirus Software Programs?

The market for antivirus software has seen rapid growth since the past few years. With cyber-attacks and viruses on the rise, virus protection has become crucial for internet users. Antivirus is one of the most popular – and often the most affordable – ways to protect your computer system from online threats and attacks. Free antivirus software has certainly made life easier for users, who seek protection from viruses and malicious programs; but are they really what they claim to be? Or does the tag of ‘free software’ make them somewhat less capable of functioning as a rudimentary form of protection? Let’s find out:

Free vs. Paid Antivirus Software

Antivirus software comes in both versions – free and paid. The fact that one version is paid while the other free is bound to create quite a few differences among the two. For one thing, free antivirus software is ideal for personal use only. Any company or organization – even a small one – should think twice before going for a free antivirus, because unlike paid programs, free versions do not offer top-notch security that a company’s systems require. Free antivirus software might not be able to detect certain viruses, or update its virus definitions to include the most recent – or most dangerous – threats, which could cost the company millions of dollars. Thus, the lack of advanced detection system in the free antivirus software does not make it suitable for commercial use.

Well, ‘free’ antivirus programs are free – which is the single-most important factor that makes these preferable over their paid counterparts in most cases. Even though users realize that they would be missing out on some of the advanced features offered by premium versions, they usually tend to suffice on a free antivirus program. This is because, they believe that basic protection is all that they need to remain safe from online threats and virus attacks.

Antivirus software is an investment for your computer system; thus you need to ensure that you make the best possible choice. The gains from this ‘investment’ are realized at some later point when your computer system avoids a possible crash that could have occurred without the antivirus. Most of the free antivirus programs – such as the ones listed on – are quite popular among users and do provide you with the basic security features. However, they are usually not enough in an enterprise environment. In this case, paid antivirus software is usually the best option because you get advanced security features and virus definition is updated daily to protect your system from latest viruses and malware.

With advanced detection capabilities and additional features for users, paid antivirus programs are usually the more rational choice for those who do not simply rely on price and basic features of the program, but also look for actual performance and add-ons. The prerequisites for any antivirus software – whether free or paid – should include the following that users must keep in mind before getting one:

  • System scanning when prompted by users
  • Updates of Database and virus definitions
  • Removal media testing
  • Enabling drive-by downloads

AVG is one well-known example of such an antivirus program that offers these basic security features. You may read the details of AVG at, and consult user reviews before choosing the ideal antivirus program for your computer system.

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