Anti-virus software is a program or set of programs that are designed to prevent, search for, detect, and remove viruses, and other forms of malware such as worms, trojans, adware, and more.
As our world continues to become ever more connected, anti-virus remains critical for users seeking to keep their devices protected. However, it’s vital that the security one chooses is always up-to-date with automatic updates, as a device without proper security software may be infected within minutes of connecting to the internet.
Unfortunately, because today’s threats are so sophisticated and are constantly being updated, traditional cybersecurity companies are incapable of updating their detection tools fast enough to handle many of these threats, particularly the ones that are not yet ‘known’ by the anti-virus software.
Pretty much all of today’s anti-virus solutions offer a host of features and are able to perform the following task:
- Scan specific files or directories for any malware or known malicious patterns
- Allow you to schedule scans to automatically run for you
- Allow you to initiate a scan of a specific file or of your computer, or of a CD or flash drive at any time
- Remove any malicious code detected – sometimes you will be notified of an infection and asked if you want to clean the file, other programs will automatically do this behind the scenes
- Show you the ‘health’ of your computer
However, while these tactics were enough to keep a device safe two or three years ago, malware has evolved at too rapid a pace for these features to remain the only thing a user needs to stay protected.
Thanks to the influx of more sophisticated phishing attacks and polymorphic malware capable of replicating and altering itself enough to not be caught by ‘traditional’ security solutions, many threats slip by, undetected. Today, an effective security solution is one that can stay ahead of these threats by automatically updating, monitoring unknown files to ensure they’re not making changes to your devices, protecting against phishing attacks and other online threats, and having the ability to roll-back any changes a file makes on a user’s device. In other words, users need to use smarter cybersecurity.