What is the best antivirus?
This one of the most popular question regarding PC security in any kind of discussion, be it in public forum or coffee shop talk. And we mostly heard a lot of recommendation and the best part is, some of the recommendation really contradict with each other. So, back to the question, what is the best one.
We flip our favorite computer magazine A, product ABC got editor choice and we flip another one, product XYZ got the throne. It really make general nettizen in wonder right. However, all those review are not absolutely right but not absolutely wrong.
In order to find the wright answer for this tricky question, we need to clear up what is BEST mean to you. Different people has different perspective in his/her best antivirus definition. So, we need to rethink what is it. Is it :
- The best detection rate at any cost?
- The lightest?
- The most complete even it actually bloat and don’t really need all the bell and whistle?
- The cheapest?
- Most popular in the market?
- Fastest company reaction time to zero day virus?
- Most friendly and effective customer support (free or charged?)
- Got Offline definiton update?
- Got the best definition to date?
- or the best heuristic engine (even without proper definition database, it will catch the virus) ?
- has zero false positive?
- Able to support medium scale to large scale network environment?
- All the above???
In the ideal world, for my very own definition, it should be all the above. But, come on. No company able to provide top of the world antivirus (quality, detection, etc etc) for free right. They need some money to feed their kid too 🙂
That is why you need to re-evaluate which criteria is mandatory for your need.
In term of detection rate (definition and heuristic engine), we are blessed. They are several independent and reputable lab which intensively test and evealuate most antivirus detection capability for for free. One of them are av-comprative.org Click Here
Beside that, if you are willing to subscribe, VB100 and WestCoast lab (to name a few) should provide you most up to date antivirus test result.
As a smart user, we shouldn’t rely on advert site which test antivirus base on which company fill their pocket most. I believe one of them :
It clearly didn’t state how they test and evaluate it. Anyone with a domain and keyboard able to make those review right. So, logon to av-comparative and have a look on their latest finding. Just bear in mind, anti-virus evolve not annually but sooner than that. It depend on how aggressive the company respond to latest threat, update their definition database, improve their scan and heuristic engine etc. I find out from av-comparative, that excellent antivirus early of 2007 not necessary will be the best one, next 6 months.
Resource friendly antivirus, one of the most popular one is Nod32. It very light but yet effective. It is recognized by its advance heuristic engine which is able to catch virus even their database has no information about the virus. For layman term, Heuristic engine for antivirus is a mechanism for an antivirus to detect, recognize a virus base on its behavior, not signature. Certain people who has no 24-7 internet connection might think this approach really come in handy. Furthermore, heuristic engine able to protect your computer from zero-day virus (which obviously no other company has signature or defenition for it yet).
Norton was known for how unfriendly it was to computer resources compare to other competitor product. It was. But the latest version improve a lot. BitDefender also a little bit on heavy side.
For Malaysian market, antivirus software already cheap enough for local to buy it (read : genuine). Bitdefeder for 3 licenses only RM60. Kaspersky, the lowest price I able to find approx RM40. For the record, USD 1.00 = RM 3.80. If price is your main concern, then Kaspersky might be your best bet.
Avira Antivir, AVG, Avast, Comodo AntiVirus and Bitdefender 9 are among free antivirus for home user. Antivir has high detection rate but a bit too many false positive. Bitdefender 9 has no real-time protection. But still, it is a very good manual scanner. Avast and AVG also pretty good contender. If you ask me to choose any of them…I will go for Antivir. (Bear in mind, AVG free is not equal AVG paid version, so av-comparative result might not reflect well for free av).
So, when your friend insist on certain brand is the best av in the world, all time champion etc, ask him to visit those independent lab website. Sharing is caring 🙂
PS : Some of my friend are hard die fan to certain brand. They keep promote their favorite antivirus like no tomorrow lol. Imagine, AVG free better than Kaspersky 7? Be my guest 😀