Reducing Your Risk
The Translator’s Tool Box - © International Writers’ Group, LLC
Antivirus software attempts to identify, fend off, and remove computer viruses
and some other malware.
Typically, this is done in a two-pronged approach:
• A memory-resident component monitors your computer for suspicious
behavior and inspects all programs and files that are opened for certain
"signatures" typical of malware. This also includes the content of web
pages you are browsing.
• Regularly scheduled scans of all the files on your computer’s hard disk(s)
look for files containing the "signatures" that might indicate an infection.
While traditionally the primary focus of antivirus software has been on
signature/definition-based detection, which is a reactive approach,
information security experts in recent years have pushed more and more for a
proactive approach in the form of behavior-based detection.
In recent years, a number of security/anti-virus providers have started to
offer versions of their antivirus products that allow for installation on a
number of computers. Among the other contenders for protection against
computer viruses are the above-mentioned Symantec and F-Secure as well as
Bitdefender (see www.pandasecurity.com), Kaspersky (see
www.kaspersky.com) and AVG (see www.avg.com).
While the Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) have to be downloaded
separately as a free antivirus product for Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7,
they have been integrated into the operating system starting with Windows 8
where the whole suite is dubbed Windows Defender.
Even though Windows Defender provides for a reasonably good baseline
protection, it is typically found to be no match for products from Symantec,
Kaspersky or Bitdefender, which consistently rank at the top. The major
differentiating factor in this are so-called zero-day attacks in which an exploit
has just become public but is already being utilized heavily.
Anti-spyware software attempts to identify, block, and remove spyware and
some other malware, such as adware.