In the time of rapidly advancing technology and identity theft, it is more necessary than ever to protect your PC.
With so many antivirus products on the market, which one do you choose? There is no right and wrong answers here but what is the difference between the free programs offered and the ones that you have to pay a yearly subscription for?
Let’s backtrack a bit and talk about viruses. Unlike the ones that humans deal with, the computer variety can be found and eliminated before they cause trouble. Computer viruses, adware and hijacking programs get into your hard drive and wreak havoc.
They slow your computer down by taking up your hard drive space or hijacking computer programs. Once there, they can infect steal personal and financial information and, depending on what information they can find on your computer, even steal your identity. What you are left with is a big mess that is a pain in the neck to fix.
Antivirus software may come pre-installed on your computer. If it does, it is likely a free trial or a paid subscription that you ordered with the system. Either way, its job is to detect viruses within items on your hard drive and remove them according to your specifications. When the paid subscription is up for renewal, you’ll receive pop-up messages warning you that your system is about to be left unprotected.
What many computer owners don’t know is that you have a choice. You don’t have to pay for antivirus protection and that many companies offer antivirus software for free. We have all heard the adage, “You get what you pay for,” but, just like everything else, it is best to shop wisely before making a choice.
Ideally you want antivirus protection to alert you when a virus is trying to hack your system. Also, spyware and adware falls into this category. You probably want the software will let you know if there is a danger from anything that you have or will download.
Both free and paid software can do those things. And in this case, free doesn’t mean cheap, it means ‘minimal features’. Some companies offer a program that does only what you really need, but offers the extra bells and whistles for a fee. Depending on your computer usage, the bells and whistles are often not needed. They take up extra hard drive space and almost never get used.
For a person, like yourself, who is careful about where they go on the Internet, the basics of free antivirus protection will work quite well. Protecting yourself with some basic surfing and downloading guidelines is half the battle.
Here is some good advice: While you are still within the free 30-day trial that the manufacturer gave you, compare free and paid software. If the free software gives you what you need, go for it. You can always upgrade later.