Congratulations on making a very wise decision regarding your personal computer internet security with respect to buying antivirus software. If by some chance you are reading this article and are still unsure of the need for an internet security system for your computer and /or network, I invite you to read my earlier article Computer Internet Security: How Viruses Can Destroy Your E-Business.
Now that you are ready to take the plunge and spend some money on internet security products such as antivirus software, it is important to understand exactly what this protective software does. Basically antivirus software has three goals:
- To prevent a virus infection from reaching your computer/network system before any damage can be done. The antivirus software has a database containing the virus identification (called signatures) of all known viruses (at the time the software was created), and this can run into thousands of signatures. When you download information to your computer or network from an outside source, be it the Internet or a disk, the antivirus program scans the incoming information for any of the virus signatures that are in its database. If a virus is identified, you are notified, before the downloaded information is allowed entry into your computer or network.
- Provide a first line of defence against incoming virus threats, if the software is installed on a computer network, so that the network administrator has time to take action to stop the virus from entering the system, or if already there, keep it from spreading and then disinfect (clean) any parts of the network that have been corrupted by the virus.
- To take the necessary steps to clean and repair your computer and/or network by either eliminating the infection and repairing damaged files or moving the corrupted files to a safe or quarantine area so that no further damage can be done by the virus.
Understanding what an internet security system should do is only one part of the journey. It is also very important to be able to make an informed decision as to the best internet security software that will meet your requirements from the many internet security products currently available.
Here are 10 key questions to ask about any computer internet security you may be planning to purchase.
- Given the fact that the computer industry experts claim that there are between 1 to 500 new viruses appearing daily, you need to ask how many different viruses the internet security software can detect.
- As noted in the first question, with the huge number of viruses appearing, ask how often you will be sent updates to the antivirus program database to ensure that your protection is up to date.
- Ask how easy it is to get the updated information about new viruses.
- Does the antivirus software have the ability to detect unusual or suspicious activity in your computer or network that may be the work of an unidentified virus?
- If purchasing the internet security system for use on a server, then can the antivirus program detect virus threats in compressed files?
- How stable is the virus alarm system, as you do not want to be flooded with virus alerts that turn out to be false?
- Ask how the internet security system notifies you of an impending virus threat.
- Are there any custom settings available in the computer internet security program that would allow you to quickly scan certain parts of your hard drive files and directories which may be more prone to virus infections?
- Is there a scanning log to inform you what was detected, what was done to the infected files and what if anything more you need to do?
- What effect does installing and running the computer internet security software have on your computer and/or network operating speeds? (Some brands of security software may not be advisable for slower Internet connection speeds or even allowed by the Internet Service Provider due to their drain on the system.)
I sincerely hope that using the questions provided above as your buying guide will help you to make an informed decision about the best internet security for your computing needs when looking at the many different internet security software reviews and products.