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What's a good anti-virus program for translators?
Thread poster: Sarah McDowell

Sarah McDowell  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Russian to English
+ ...
Sep 6, 2012

Hi everyone!

I am looking for a good anti-virus program. I previously had a McAfee trial that came with my computer but I didn't like it. I also was not fond of Microsoft Security Essentials.

I am considering Kaspersky Labs or Norton Anti-virus. However, I am not sure which one to choose and there are many different varieties of software offered by these companies on their websites. Are there any other great companies for anti-virus software that I am overlooking?
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Hi everyone!

I am looking for a good anti-virus program. I previously had a McAfee trial that came with my computer but I didn't like it. I also was not fond of Microsoft Security Essentials.

I am considering Kaspersky Labs or Norton Anti-virus. However, I am not sure which one to choose and there are many different varieties of software offered by these companies on their websites. Are there any other great companies for anti-virus software that I am overlooking?

It's really important because as translators we deal with a large number of files of potentially uncertain origin. We also have a lot to lose if our computer gets a virus. I know because my computer had to be repaired in June for over a week and I lost a lot of potential work because of it.

I am not overly familiar with the technical side of these software programs so any help is much appreciated.

Thanks,
Sarah
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Adam Pielach  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 05:47
Polish to English
+ ...
Norton 360 AV Sep 6, 2012

Hello Sarah,
the case is that each Anti-Virus has its weak points and flaws. There is no ultimate tool for everyone where no virus gets in. The other problem is that viruses are always first, they must infect some pc's around the world and then Anti-Virus programmers take it into consideration and update their software database.

I would never use Microsoft AV, just because I am disappointed with Micro$oft policy, marketing and way of treating their customers. What is more, Win
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Hello Sarah,
the case is that each Anti-Virus has its weak points and flaws. There is no ultimate tool for everyone where no virus gets in. The other problem is that viruses are always first, they must infect some pc's around the world and then Anti-Virus programmers take it into consideration and update their software database.

I would never use Microsoft AV, just because I am disappointed with Micro$oft policy, marketing and way of treating their customers. What is more, Windows is one big virus that Microsoft uses to get as much info from our private files etc. but that is a different problem.

Back to your question, I am using "Norton Anti-Virus 360" and I am really happy from it. It does not consume too much system resources, it nicely works in the background while you are away from keyboard and scans for problems. It has very interesting functions, like Norton File Insight - you can scan each file before using it and what is more, it scans all files that are downloaded from the internet on-the-go. You should try it, there is always trial version and if you are happy with their software, you can secure your and other two PC's for a year for just $30 if I remember that well.

Good luck!
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ATIL KAYHAN  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 07:47
Turkish to English
+ ...
Avira Free Anti-Virus Sep 6, 2012

First of all, you really do not have to pay for a good anti-virus program. We are somehow given the impression that we have to "buy" an anti-virus program but that impression is faulty. There are a lot of free anti-virus programs out there.

I look at Consumer Reports results to decide what to choose, and an anti-virus program is no exception. I currently use Avira Free Antivirus Program. It is the number one in Consumer Reports Free Anti-malware Programs ratings. The second one
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First of all, you really do not have to pay for a good anti-virus program. We are somehow given the impression that we have to "buy" an anti-virus program but that impression is faulty. There are a lot of free anti-virus programs out there.

I look at Consumer Reports results to decide what to choose, and an anti-virus program is no exception. I currently use Avira Free Antivirus Program. It is the number one in Consumer Reports Free Anti-malware Programs ratings. The second one is AVG Antivirus Free 2012.

The only drawback to the free antivirus program is that you occasionally (about once a day) get a window asking you to upgrade to the paid version. If you can live with that, fine (I can). If not, you have to pay.

If you really want to pay for an anti-virus program, the number one again is Avira Internet Security 2012, which sells for $90. All these ratings and more are on Consumer Reports pages, which I will provide the link for.

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/electronics-computers/computers-internet/security-software/security-software-ratings/ratings-overview.htm

That link may or may not work for you because Consumer Reports is a paid site. I have been a member for several years now. If you buy a lot of things including cars, and would like to make wise decisions, it is a good investment.

Lets wait and see what others have to say about the subject. Every idea is debatable, of course. I am curious as to other suggestions. Anti-virus programs is an open topic.

[Edited at 2012-09-06 07:08 GMT]

[Edited at 2012-09-06 07:10 GMT]
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Shai Navé  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 06:47
Member
English to Hebrew
+ ...
Avira/Avast/AVG/MSE Sep 6, 2012

To me, a good Anti Virus is one that gets frequent updates, has low acceptable false positives detection rate, do not bug the user every couple of minutes, low on system resources, and of course, has good detection rate.

The fact of the matter is that no AV can 100% protect a system if the user puts it at risk. Most malwares infect a system as a results of the user action and by their approval (although many time the user don't actually approve them, they just so keen to open files
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To me, a good Anti Virus is one that gets frequent updates, has low acceptable false positives detection rate, do not bug the user every couple of minutes, low on system resources, and of course, has good detection rate.

The fact of the matter is that no AV can 100% protect a system if the user puts it at risk. Most malwares infect a system as a results of the user action and by their approval (although many time the user don't actually approve them, they just so keen to open files that are a maleware in disguise), and not otherwise.

A good approach would be to keep your OS patched (although sometimes it is good to wait a week or so before installing all the new updates, just to make sure that they do not introduce any issues), use a reliable AV and Firewall (even a basic one like that of Windows 7), and most importantly, use common sense. I would also suggest running a weekly to monthly on-demand (no need for it to run constantly at the background) spyware check like that of Malewarebytes'
As an extra layer of security due the risk associated with working with various file with different sources, you can open all file in a sandbox, thus minimizing the risk of a maleware infecting you system even if it was not detected by the AV.

MSE is actually a very good AV in my opinion, not intrusive, low on system resources and does its work very well. It is also free for commercial use. What didn't you like about it?
I can also recommend Avira Anti Virus, Avast Anti Virus and AVG Anti Virus (which I used to like, but in my opinion became a bit bloated). They all have FREE versions, but I think that the license terms of the free version prohibit commercial use.

Kaspersky is another good option, although I have found it a bit heavy on system resources for my taste (but I don't have experience with the last two versions).

What version or package to choose depends on your needs. Most companies (Symantec, Kaspersky, etc.) offer a stand alone version of their AV as well as packages of AV + Firewall (usually dubbed Internet Security) and other components such as spyware detection, parental control and more. Usually those extra component are not required and even if they are, there might be better alternatives (even free at times), so I wouldn't recommend going for all the bells and whistles just for the sake of having them. Personally, I advocate building your own toolbox, choosing the best tool for each purpose instead of going for those Swiss knife packages which not always have the best tool (and best is subjective in this context) in each category.
I would say that for a small office environment it is recommended to choose the stand alone AV or AV + Firewall (if you don't already use a Firewall or if you are not satisfied with your existing solution).
Also, before you buy. install the Trial version and make sure that the AV and Firewall (if you go for it) are to your liking, don't cause any slow down of your system or otherwise too intrusive.

And although not directly related, I cannot stress enough the importance of backup (2 separate copies or more of your important data), there are so many scenarios in which data can be lost and that no security system can prevent. Today, viruses and maleware only rarely directly affect your data. They are mostly annoying, preventing some softwares to work properly, slowing down your system, creating security holes through which information can leak or praying eyes look in, bomb you with spyware, etc., but just rarely directly delete or corrupt the local data (although some data can get corrupted indirectly in the process).
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Gudrun Wolfrath  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 05:47
English to German
+ ...
I recommend G Data. Sep 6, 2012

I used to have McAfee, then Kaspersky, which consumed a lot of computer resources.

Now I am quite happy with G Data. They also provide a good troubleshooting service.


 

Gudrun Wolfrath  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 05:47
English to German
+ ...
G Data just found a virus (Java.Exploit). See link: Sep 6, 2012

http://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/Nur-9-von-22-Virenwaechtern-blockieren-Java-Exploit-1695906.html

 

Gudrun Wolfrath  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 05:47
English to German
+ ...
Sorry, the link is in German. Sep 6, 2012

Successful: Avast Free, AVG, Avira, ESET, G Data, Kaspersky, PC Tools, Sophos und Symantec

Not succesful: AhnLab, Bitdefender, BullGuard, eScan, F-Secure, Fortinet, GFI-Vipre, Ikarus, McAfee, Panda Cloud Antivirus. Trend Micro und Webroot


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:47
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
ESET NOD32 Sep 6, 2012

Has all it takes: quick to install, quick to uninstall if you don't like it in the end, does not force you to constantly reset your computer for install/uninstall operations, does not swallow up resources, updates itself automatically and quietly, and most important of all it has blocked everything we have encountered so far.

I do not particularly favour the so called "security suites", which swamp your computer with tools you don't really need (after all, we are simply advanced IT
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Has all it takes: quick to install, quick to uninstall if you don't like it in the end, does not force you to constantly reset your computer for install/uninstall operations, does not swallow up resources, updates itself automatically and quietly, and most important of all it has blocked everything we have encountered so far.

I do not particularly favour the so called "security suites", which swamp your computer with tools you don't really need (after all, we are simply advanced IT users, not necessarily computer geeks) and take up vital resources.

A simple, but powerful antivirus is all you need, if you ask me. Just my opinion!
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Radian Yazynin  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:47
Member (2004)
English to Russian
+ ...
Recommend Kaspersky Sep 6, 2012

Nowadays AV software isn't enough. Only comprehensive protection should more or less give you peace of mind, i.e. integrated AV, firewall, etc. The latest KIS (Internet Security) now uses such an innovative feature as safe payment feature (if you pay online using your card details), apart from other extremely useful options.

 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:47
Spanish to English
+ ...
Avast or similar freeware Sep 6, 2012

Like other colleagues, I use AVAST; there is a free basic version and another one which you pay for. I've used it for 3-4 years without any problem.

I find it better than MacAfee, Panda or Norton, which I've used in the past and I think are a rip-off.


 

XXXphxxx (X)  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 04:47
Portuguese to English
+ ...
ESET Sep 6, 2012

I posted the same question a while ago as I was sick of anti-virus programmes that take over your whole system. I have ESET installed on 3 PCs and 1 Mac; it works like a dream. By contrast, I have a machine that came pre-installed with Mcafee and it's had two massive viruses in the space of 6 months. The first took 2 hours to remove and I had to pay for the privilege.

 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:47
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Same reasons Sep 6, 2012

Lisa Simpson, MCIL wrote:
By contrast, I have a machine that came pre-installed with Mcafee and it's had two massive viruses in the space of 6 months. The first took 2 hours to remove and I had to pay for the privilege.

This is exactly why we switched from Norton to ESET: Norton Antivirus literally owned our machines and it failed to defend one of them against a virus ESET NOD32 removed in a minute.


 

KlaasZ  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:47
English to Dutch
+ ...
An answer of the Pro's Sep 6, 2012

Cloudeight InfoAve Premium says:

Microsoft Security Essentials version 4 - excellent anti-virus protection. Free and easy to use - easy on resources.
BitDefender Free AntiVirus -- top-rated antivirus engine joins the ranks of the free.

AntiVir (free personal version available)

SUPERAntiSpyware Professional

No anti-virus can protect you if you do not keep it updated. Update your anti-virus at least twice a week or more. Install and use onl
... See more
Cloudeight InfoAve Premium says:

Microsoft Security Essentials version 4 - excellent anti-virus protection. Free and easy to use - easy on resources.
BitDefender Free AntiVirus -- top-rated antivirus engine joins the ranks of the free.

AntiVir (free personal version available)

SUPERAntiSpyware Professional

No anti-virus can protect you if you do not keep it updated. Update your anti-virus at least twice a week or more. Install and use only one anti-virus program. Installing two does not give you twice the protection. On the contrary, installing two could result in reduced protection and many computer problems.

Also, it's very important that you keep your Windows updated with the latest patches, fixes, and updates. If you don't have Automatic Update turned on, you should consider turning on Windows updates - at least to notify you when updates are available. You can still choose when to install them, not install them or install them automatically. If you don't install Windows updates you could be leaving yourself vulnerable to emerging threats. We highly recommend you install all Windows updates as soon as they become available.

The best thing you can do is choose on of the three above in combination with SuperAntiSpyware Professional.

TechSupportAlert.com says:

Best Free Antivirus Software for Windows

Avast! Free Antivirus -- Download | Review

"Avast has the most features of all free antivirus programs, including full real-time capabilities (web, e-mail, IM, P2P, network, script, and behavior shields), boot-time scanning, a site ratings plugin, and a light sandbox.

It has high detection rates of malware and is light on resources. But the automatic sandbox may confuse average users (by default a pop up asks you whether an application should be sandboxed or not)."

High Quality Alternatives:

Microsoft Security Essentials: "A great choice for average users because of minimal user interaction (automatically updates and removes threats). Detection rates are very good (particularly for rootkits). More impressively, MSE has few false positives and good removal of existing malware." Chosen for Gizmo's 9 great freeware.

Panda Cloud Antivirus: "Panda is also an excellent choice for average users with a simple interface and minimal user interaction (automatically updates and removes threats). Detection rates are very high (but detection of real-world threats is slightly lower than the competition). A behavioral blocker and web protection help increase your security."

Related: Antivirus programs aren't a magical incantation to banish evil spirits, so we recommend using safe practices (and taking a look at our security guides below).

What's it for? - Provides an essential layer of protection from a multitude of virus, trojan, worm, spyware, adware, and rootkit infections. Our top picks have reasonably good detection rates for all forms of malware. Use one (and only one) antivirus program for real-time protection.
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Daniel Grau  Identity Verified
Argentina
English to Spanish
How to evaluate relative qualities Sep 6, 2012

The next time you receive a suspicious file, upload it to www. www.virustotal.com . The site currently analyzes any file submitted using 42 antivirus packages. This service is free, but they offer some kind in Internet-based protection.

In the last phishing attempt I received through email, about half of those programs failed t
... See more
The next time you receive a suspicious file, upload it to www. www.virustotal.com . The site currently analyzes any file submitted using 42 antivirus packages. This service is free, but they offer some kind in Internet-based protection.

In the last phishing attempt I received through email, about half of those programs failed to detect it. No wonder malware still propagates.
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Sarah McDowell  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Russian to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
So many different opinions! Sep 6, 2012

Wow, thanks for all your responses. It seems that as usual there are so many different opinions. I'll take some time today to read what everyone has written and visit relevant links and then get back to the forum if I have any more questions.

Everyone is saying something different so it makes it difficult for me to decide what to use.

Thanks!


 
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