How Effective are Antivirus Programs?

Do antivirus programs such as Avast have what it takes to protect you from online attacks such as malware, viruses, phishing and others?

Despite the high rate at which we are becoming vulnerable online; some people still find it difficult to get the premium antivirus programs installed on their computer.

Computer viruses range from relatively simple criminal attacks, where credit card information is targeted, to espionage programs that spy on users and data but can easily be upgraded into cyber weapons at the touch of a button, according to Kaspersky Lab, an online security firm.

Whichever antivirus program you are using?, think about the following:

Do they protect you against ransomware type of infections?
How much CPU / RAM long does it process? Will it affect your PC”s overall performance?
Does it offer real time protection?

How Effective are Antivirus Programs?

Let’s talk about Avast Antivirus

Avast is an excellent Anti-Virus program. As already pointed out it scores very high in comparative testing and is well regarded in the tech community.

“I have worked for two different security companies, both from Europe and I can assure you that unfortunately there is no Antivirus that is 100 % secure. As far as Avast goes is not the best, but I don’t think is that bad either”, Valentin Negoita, an IT Technician, said.
Meanwhile, Avast comes in two versions, the free Av scanner, and mobile defense scanner, and the paid for a suite, which has online security features, firewall, ability to create a USB vaccination stick, and more advanced options for the scanner.

Surprisingly, Antivirus software only catches 45% of malware attacks and is “dead,” according to a senior manager at Symantec
Brian Dye, the security online expert at Symantec and senior vice-president for information security at the company, which invented commercial antivirus software in the 1980s and now develops and sells Norton Antivirus, suggest that such software leaves users vulnerable.

“Hackers increasingly use novel methods and bugs in the software of computers to perform attacks, resulting in about 55% cyber-attacks going unnoticed by commercial antivirus software,” Brian says.

From Protect to Detect and Respond Strategy

Following the perception that hackers are becoming more powerful, overcoming the effectiveness of antivirus software developed by engineers. Most security firms have resorted to detect and respond strategy, so as to content with online attacks.

Security companies like Symantec, which has a turnover of about $1.6bn (£590m) and an 8% global antivirus marketshare, according to data from the enterprise software company Opswat, had to diversify its products, moving into the “detect and respond” sector rather than the simple “protect” segment.

The whole idea behind the detect and respond paradigm means tracking data leaks, hacks and other intrusions and preventing further consequences from stolen information.

For users, that means changing passwords, but for some businesses, that would trigger that often means stopping access to accounts and services that have been subject to data loss or infiltration.

More importantly, tracking the source of the intrusion and shoring up cyber defenses, something governments have been doing with new cyber response teams.