Free v’s Paid Antivirus Software

Do I need antivirus software?

If you want to minimise the risks of viruses, malware and all other potential nasty elements that can put your data or personal information at risk, then yes!

Will a free antivirus be enough?

Windows has had built in virus protection into it for several years now in the form of Windows Defender, and whilst the latest build of it built into Windows 10 has had it’s virus detection rate improve, it is still not quite as high as other dedicated antivirus software and does not offer quite the same range of different protection services that such as email/browser plugins, spam filters and password managers .

Many well-known Antivirus software manufacturers provide free versions of their products and although they usually give excellent virus detection rates, there is always a trade-off. Free antivirus may often provide the minimum features of antivirus software such as malware scanning and occasionally browser plugins, but often don’t include all the features of a paid for security suite such as identity protection and parental controls.

However, more often than not such free software will not offer technical support on the same level that paid for software does and very often there will be annoying regular pop up adverts appearing to persuade you to pay for that company’s paid for version.

What will a paid antivirus give me?

Whilst free antivirus software usually have very good detection rates, tests have shown that new threats are not always picked up as efficiently as they are by paid for antivirus software with their greater system monitoring capabilities. It is quite common that paid for antivirus are less likely to detect false threats than free products.

A paid for antivirus will give have better technical support backup for it’s use, very often by phone and email rather than having to rely on forums and other documentation that free programs rely on.

Paid antivirus software will usually include far more features than what a free antivirus would, these can include:

  • Parental controls
  • More secure firewall protection
  • Safer browsing components
  • Identity and privacy protection
  • Spamfilters
  • Cloud integrated backup
  • System optimization tools

Although many people feel that they would only need a free antivirus, we would always recommend a quality paid antivirus due to the extra features that they offer and the low cost per subscription – a year’s subscription is far cheaper than the potential damage a virus or malware can cause, or even just the price of virus removal.

We definitely recommend a paid for antivirus suite for users such as businesses, parents, those who work from home and those who use the internet for sensitive transactions such as banking and submitting personal data.

Which antivirus do you recommend?

There are many antivirus suites out there, some better than others however one that we confidently recommend at all times is Bullguard which gets excellent test results and includes the following within it – Antivirus, secure firewall, safe browsing, spamfilter, vulnerability scanner, gaming mode, 24/7 support, parental control, pc tune up tools, cloud backup.

We always carry Bullguard antivirus in stock in our shop. It is very easy to set up however we are always willing to help if any help is needed.