Do I even need antivirus?

Discussion in 'Computer Security' started by JLuchinski, Feb 27, 2019.

  1. JLuchinski

    JLuchinski Well-Known Member

    I've been using bitfender for a while now and recently all of the updates have been failing. The other day when I rebooted my system the update was stuck, it sat there using 100% disk usage for an hour before I got frustrated and uninstalled it. I used to use avast but it eats up Internet bandwidth. So is it worth using any of the free antivirus programs or should I be ok using the built in Windows protection? Its been about a week and no problems so far.
  2. _Pete_

    _Pete_ Active Member

    In my opinion, no you don't. If you think about it the scroats who write the virus codes, they are way ahead of the anti-virus program writers. Unless the anti-virus people have a totally reliable crystal ball, which they don't, how can they possibly know what the next set of malicious coding is going to be. They claim that their programs are "heurisitic" but that is pie in the sky IMO. I do use an anti-virus but only because it comes free with Windows 10. I also use an anti-malware program, Malwarebytes, but only the free one. I have had loads of malware, which is not considered to be a virus by the anti-virus writers, although some are coming round to incorporate anti-malware into their anti-virus programs, but never a virus. I think that anti-malware is far more important in this day and age. BUT even anti-malware programs are by no means foolproof for exactly the same reasons that anti-virus programs are not.

    My strategy for anti-malware and anti-virus is to never back up my whole computer as that will back up any sleepers as well. I only backup my personal files and then I do a clean re-install. Yes it's a bit extreme but it doesn't take long for me and I am not running a business or anything important on my computers.
    JLuchinski likes this.
  3. Darren

    Darren Moderator Staff Member

    Scan with ADWCleaner and MalwareBytes if needed
    Don't be stupid on the internet

    Should about cover it. :D
    _Kyle_ and JLuchinski like this.
  4. JLuchinski

    JLuchinski Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the replies. Yeah I use malware bytes and run it regularly and I also use ccleaner which is awesome at maintaining a clean registry and removing junk. My oldest son is getting into pc gaming so I will have to educate him on being safe on the Internet, not that I really have to worry about that though because he's already smarter then me lol.
  5. TheRealSwede

    TheRealSwede Member

    Well, Would you use a car that does NOT have any breaks???
    Probably not! And you really should use a PROPER protection on your computer..

    And the free antivirusprogram are NOT really that good at all.. And the one built into Windowss 10 is pure crap.
    I have used it for a while on my seldom used stationary computer.. and while visiting some of the largest, ehrmmm: Adult webbsites
    that crap did nothing, but when visiting the same websites on my laptop (that has a proper PREMIUM Sophos home antivirus program)
    the sophos antivirus frequently alarmed of malware. And when checking the urls against virustotal they where malicious.
    That continued with links in web-searches, Then i used google a lot. and has now changed to only using bing (safe search = off)

    So I really would not recommend anyone to NOT using any proper antivirus (that means NOT using ANY free antivirus)
    Note that there are a reason for the free antivirus to be just that: Free! If its free they really don´t need to protect you all the way
    like they do if you paid for the protection.. And there are cheep and good antiviruses out there Sophos only charges €37 for a premium protection to be used in up to 10 different computers/macs.. (thats €3,7 per computer and year)

    If you ever surf porn you really need to read:
    45% of all porn themed threats where trojan-downloaders and yet another 20% where trojans...

    And according to kaspersky:
    "During the year(of 2018) , Kaspersky Lab solutions repelled 1 876 998 691 attacks launched from online resources located all over the world, 554 159 621 unique malicious objects were detected and 21 643 946 unique URLs were recognized as malicious by web antivirus components." Read all about it HERE

    So relying an a FREE antivirus (like the one incl. in Windows) is in my mind, just like using a car that you know does not have any breaks.. (=stupid!)
  6. Darren

    Darren Moderator Staff Member

    This is blatantly just false. No. Free AntiVirus is fine for most users, if you want advanced protection yeah paid will help but saying free AntiVirus doesn't work is 100 percent a lie and I'd ask you stop spreading misinformation and alarmist narratives.

    Also cars have brakes that make them stop, otherwise they will break, and not work.
    bbudesa, aldan, C4C and 2 others like this.
  7. _Kyle_

    _Kyle_ Well-Known Member

    Free Antivirus + common sense = pretty good protection
    C4C, OmniDyne and Darren like this.
  8. OmniDyne

    OmniDyne Active Member

    Windows Defender is more than adequate. Learning to stay away from sites that spread malicious software, not opening spam emails, not clicking on spam links, etc. is pretty much your best defense and almost guarantees you not to catch anything.

    I didn't use an antivirus for close to 6 years on Windows 7 and caught nothing. Sometimes I'd do a sweep with Avast and it always came up negative, and then I eventually uninstalled it and just never checked until I was transitioning to Windows 10. Checked it again, had nothing even after years of visiting unmentionable sites. I just practiced common sense.
    _Kyle_ likes this.
  9. C4C

    C4C Well-Known Member

    I switched from Bitdefender Free and am currently nearing the end of the Malwarebyte Premium trial.

    The addition of having malicious web pages blocked is nice, but not necessary.
    I only had 2 pages get blocked by Malwarebytes and both were sketchy links to begin with (was looking for a place to watch an anime for free :p).
  10. JLuchinski

    JLuchinski Well-Known Member

    Yeah I remember trying to watch Rick And Morty for free on redacted and I got all kinds of blockers flagging that site, not really worth it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 4, 2019
    C4C likes this.
  11. Calin

    Calin Well-Known Member

    As long as you don't do stupid things, no, you don't.
    I use Malwarebytes but I have it disabled and only use it when I suspect I have a virus.
    JLuchinski likes this.
  12. JLuchinski

    JLuchinski Well-Known Member

    Sometimes I tell myself, don't do stupid things, then I do them and I'm like why did you do that stupid thing? Getting married was one of those things jk.
    Calin and C4C like this.
  13. Calin

    Calin Well-Known Member

    Same here :p
    I admit, I do get caught out by fake sites but very rarely
  14. diypartsjoy

    diypartsjoy Member

    I don’t use antivirus. I just use the built in Defender, works fine. Antivirus is such a scam.
  15. aldan

    aldan Active Member

    defender is antivirus.
    Darren likes this.
  16. diypartsjoy

    diypartsjoy Member

    Yeah, I know. I mean third party antivirus is a scam. If you pay for it.
  17. TheRealSwede

    TheRealSwede Member

    Almost true! Free antivirus does SOME WORK, but they are not good enough, neither are "common sense" good enough any more..
    The internet is large, and YOU can not know if your otherwise trusted domains get hacked..
    That where all these vulnerabilities step in, ANY website or any online service might get a vulnerability that someone exploits and then that website or any online service turns out to be the bad guy! So the common sense makes you a bit safer, but not safe enough!

    And NO! As i have been trying to say! Free antivirus are crippled versions of the payed versions and thus they do not have the latest "gadgets" like exploit detection, they dont have the mashine learning or AI and most often they dont even have the ability to block malicious websites..
    And Defender simply does not have all that it would need.. Its ability to "block malicious websites" are based upon "smart screen" That works so poorly that i bet not many of you have seen its blockpage for month and month..
    While anyone who has had a payed antivirus WITH blocking of malicious websites are likly to have seen its block page more recently!
    And YES! I like Microsoft and Windows, but still i admit that their "defender" is CRAP! It has improved lately but its not "there" yet!
  18. johnb35

    johnb35 Administrator Staff Member

    Avast does pretty good at this, it even alerts to the fake flash player updates.
  19. AlienMenace

    AlienMenace Well-Known Member

    I use Windows Defender and never had a problem so far. But it is backed also with Malwarebytes Premium, (I'm one of some that have a lifetime Malwarebytes Premium) when they first offer it.
  20. TheRealSwede

    TheRealSwede Member

    For those who are interested, please read one of the latest tests regarding malware protection and how good they are at blocking any type of malware:

    In blocking exploits (the most dangerous malwaretype since they often give the attacker SYSTEM-level access (that is even higher rights than your own administrator-account has, not affected by UAC, NOT GIVING ANY WARNINGS).
    Out of 35 different exploits Sophos managed to block 34,
    -Symantec (=Norton) only blocked 19 where another 1 exploit got missed but was stopped by other means, totally missing 12 exploits.
    -Microsofts defender WITH EXPLOIT GUARD only blocked 17 exploits (10 without exploitguard), 2 where in both cases missed but was stopped by other means, totally missing a enormous 16 exploits EVEN WITH EXPLOITGUARD and a totally missing whapping 23 Exploits without exploit guard! (Defender is total CRAP!)
    -Mcaffe only blocked 12 out of 35 exploits, missing 2 that was stopped by other means, totally missing a whapping 21 exploits!! Being an even bigger pile of crap!
    -Trend micro only blocked 8 out of 35 exploits, and totally missing an extreme 24 out of 35 exploits, with 3 exploits stopped by other means That is really so poor it should not be called anything with the word "protection" at all..

    And that is just the exploit protection feature tested.

    in the 1: protection accuracy rating Sophos got 99%, in the 2: legitimate accuracy rating it got 100% and in 3: total accuracy rating sophos got a 100% rating..

    Microsoft only got 1: 90% rating, 2: 98% rating, 3: 95% rating (= Not good at all)

    Mcafee, Crowdstrike,Trend micro and Panda and webroot got even worse ratings (beeing worse than not good at all)

    -Malwarebytes (that many here relies upon) was tha most crappy crap of them all...
    1: a MINUS 25% rating (that is unique to get a minus score), 2: 100% rating, and 3: only a minute 55% rating..
    That even worse than Microsofts low rated DEFENDER.... That is totally not accepted!

    So everyone that claims no antivirus protection to be good enough and uses that as a reason to claim that no-one needs to use antivirus, are most likely people who has an interest in spreading malware, spyware etc. for their own benefit...

    And note that the most efficient antivirus in this test was the cheapest one of them all, a measly €37,5 to protect 10 different PCs or Macs! And that one is almost the same as the business versions tested...
    There is a free version of ALL of the tested antiviruses, but note that they all lack several important functions.. So the FREE versions of the above, are even WORSE at protecting you..

    And if you use Microsofts defender, malwarebytes, mcafee, etc. please change to something that at least TRY to do their intended "job"...
    You really can not do without an security software like an antivirus etc.

    If anyone claims that you are better of without an protection like an antivirus, avoid those people, they have no clue of what they talk about...
    Download the entire test here: or at the NSS-labs
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2019

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