What is Antivirus and How it Helps in Protecting Data?

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what is antivirus

Computers and its uses made it a critical part of human’s personal and work life. The developments in the sector of Information Technology, Healthcare, Communication and Education voice the depth of benefits of invention of computer. This device is of even more value during coronavirus outbreak, where the employers and employees are confined to their homes and work from home is the new work strategy. As well as it is a device that every student need to be ready for online classes.

Well, computer is a device that might not work perfectly all the time, there are many issues that you might face while working on a computer. All the little things that you face can be overcome with computer troubleshooting. But, it’s hard to deal with a powerful enemies called “Virus” and “Malware”. Here, I will talk about computer virus and antivirus.

Let’s get started…

What is Antivirus?

Antivirus softwares are built to detect and destroy malwares like keyloggers, computer worms, viruses, spyware and others malicious threats, to protect your computer or mobile devices against it. Antivirus programs  come with both automatic and manual filtering capabilities.These programs scan, detect and remove viruses from your computer/laptop or mobile devices. There are different types of anti-virus programs available in the market but you need to choose the one that best fits your need and gives maximum protection to the system.

Antivirus softwares offer firewall features, which foresee unauthorized access to your computer or mobile device. To keep your devices more safe, you can choose Internet Security Suite that includes both firewall and antivirus abilities.

What is a Computer Virus ?

A computer virus is a code that enters a computer or devices upon execution, and is capable of replicating itself. Viruses that are designed with a sole purpose to harm a computer are called as “malware”. Some of these malware include: Trojan horses, Ransomware, Adware and Spyware.

Do I need an antivirus program?

Yes you need an antivirus program to save it against malware. Consider a case when your computer gets infected with a virus in absence of antivirus program, than many malicious actions could take place. I recommend you to get an antivirus program installed on your laptop/computer and mobile phones. If you are not using an antivirus on your computer yet, at least make sure that the Windows Defender is running.

What Happens is Virus infects Your Computer?

If a virus infects a computer that has no antivirus program installed, it may spy on you, prevent access to files or delete them, send spam etc.

If a virus infects a system with antivirus software, it will be detected and deleted by the software itself or you will be notified to take actions immediately, based on the software settings.

Now another important things that you must be aware of is fake antivirus, which are capable of disabling the legitimate security software on your system and exposing it to threats.

What Should I do After Installing Antivirus Program?

Once an antivirus is installed on your system and starts to run, it protects your computer against malwares and viruses. To run an antivirus, right-click on it or double click on the icon, which will open the program and allow you to start a scan. The antivirus programs have an option to schedule a time to all the files on your computer and scan it for past infections. You can either schedule a scan or do it manually.

Data Protection is Critical

With the growth in use and demand of mobile phones, the opportunities for cybercriminals are also increased. If you download a malicious app on your mobile device, cybercriminals use them to access your personal and financial information, without your consent. The same story could be true for laptops and computers. Protecting your devices with antivirus software will keep these threats at bay, while keeping your personal and financial data safe.

Types of Antivirus

Broadly there are two types of antivirus – Free and paid!

Free Antivirus

The antivirus that are free offer the baseline malware protection that protect your system against malwares, but this baseline protection may not be sufficient to combat all threats. Some of the free antivirus that you can use are – AVG, Avast, Panda, Malwarebytes and Bitdefender.

Paid Antivirus

Paid versions of antivirus software offer more protection. You can start with a trial version and if you are happy with it, go for a paid version.

MacAfee and Norton are the two most used antivirus programs.

Based on the OS compatibality, Antiviruses also differ

If you are using Windows, you must use Antivirus that are compatible with Windows OS.  Antivirus for Linux OS are to be used by Linux users, while Android users  should choose Antivirus that work dedicatedly for Android OS and Antivirus for MAC OS are for Mac users.

The antivirus also varies with the version of Windows, it is not same for Windows 7 or 10. Even the antivirus you buy will be based on 32-bit or 64-bit operating system.

The First Antivirus

The first known computer virus dates back to 1971, which was named “Creeper virus“, which infected PDP-10 mainframe computers  of the Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC). The PDP-10 mainframe computers were running on the TENEX operating system. The Creeper virus was deleted by a program “The Reaper”, which was created by Ray Tomlinson.  In history of antivirus, “The Reaper” is considered by many as the first antivirus software that the world get to know. But the thruth is that the Reaper was also a virus that was capable of removing  the Creeper virus. 

The Creeper virus was followed by many other viruses and the ways to remove them.  However the first antivirus programs appeared in the year 1987. It was  an antivirus program from G Data Software for the Atari ST. soon after the firs antivirus, in the same year, John McAfee introduced VirusScan, which later on became the McAfee antivirus program.

Wrapping Up

Data is vital in today’s technology-savvy world. Internet, computers and mobile devices are a part of our daily life that have all your personal and financial details, making it essential to keep our devices protected against cyber threats. The unknown enemies that enter our life without letting us get even a hint sometimes. It is equally important to use antivirus on both the devices, mobiles and laptops/computers.

Now that you know what a computer virus is, why to use antivirus and the necessity. You must not wait for the malware or viruses to hit your devices. Buy an antivirus today or use a free antivirus to give your data the protection it needs.

Have a question? Need our suggestion on the best antivirus for your system? Write it to us in the comments below.

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