Multiple Antivirus Products

Many people like the idea of having more than one antivirus product on their computer at the same time, but it’s actually a bad idea.

Antivirus programs search your system for working-in-a-computer-repair-shop-i-see-this-way-too-often-28841
programs that are monitoring and sending information about your computer. And the other antivirus product will be doing just that. You end up with two (or more) antivirus products going to war, trying to disable and remove one another.

And when a virus is found, the multiple antivirus products may both detect it, but only one can remove it. This can lead to reports of viruses still being installed that are actually long gone.

Not to mention, because of the way they function, (scanning every file and process running on your computer and every connection to and from the internet)  antivirus programs can slow your computer down. Running two or more of these programs which are battling with one another for control of your system will bring most computers to a standstill.

You’re better off installing a full antivirus suite (I prefer Bitdefender), or a regular antivirus product and a companion anti-malware program like Malwarebytes.

Bitdefender Antivirus Deal

As a reseller, I’m pleased to be able to offer discount pricing on Bitdefender Antivirus. Bitdefender was rated one of the top antivirus products of 2015 by both PCMag and PCWorld.

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Email Me to place an order today!

‘Your PC may be infected!’ Inside the shady world of antivirus telemarketing | PCWorld

Tech support schemes have barely slowed despite legal action by the FTC. Some adware programs display messages to people suggesting their computer is at risk, even though the adware programs aren’t designed to detect security problems.

Source: ‘Your PC may be infected!’ Inside the shady world of antivirus telemarketing | PCWorld

PC Overhaul is Now an Antivirus Reseller

I’m proud to announce that PC Overhaul is now an antivirus reseller, which means I can offer a 20% discount on all the major brand antivirus and internet security products on the market.

pcoverhaul reseller antivirus

If you’re not sure which antivirus to choose, PC Magazine recently published it’s 2015 antivirus review, which you can find here.

To purchase an antivirus subscription, or for more information, contact me via email.

Can Mac’s Get Viruses?

I’m sure you’ve probably heard that Apple products like MAC computers, iPhone’s and iPad’s can’t get viruses. If you work in computer repair, you hear about this all the time. Many of my customers tell me they will get a MacBook when they replace their computer because they are tired of getting infected all the time on their Windows based computers. A virus is just a program running on an Operating System, like all other programs. So is the Mac Operating System so secure that you really can’t get infected on a Mac?

First, a virus maker is likely to choose the platform that gives them access to the most potential victims. As this chart from NetMarketShare.com shows, over 85% of computers are still running some form of Windows.


Also, probably due to the fact that there are so many more computers running Windows than OSX, most programmers learn to code for Windows computers. And most of the tools and scripts that virus makers use in constructing malware are designed to target Windows.  These may be some of the reasons why Windows has been targeted far more than Apple’s Operating Systems.

The Mac Operating Systems, starting with OSX 10.0 (Cheetah) are based on UNIX. The UNIX permission structure prevents unauthorized execution of software, which makes it harder for viruses to infect your Mac. Windows will try to run a program any way it can, even if it’s being redirected by a virus, but UNIX will stop a virus in its tracks if it detects an unauthorized redirection. As great as this is, it doesn’t make your Mac computer immune. To infect a Mac, the viruses just need to be written well enough to get around the UNIX code. Not as easy as coding a virus for Windows, but do-able.

 

Starting with OSX 10.8 (Mountain Lion), Macs have a host of built in protection from malware, including  Gatekeeper. These additional measures make your Mac more secure than a computer running Windows.

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It would be easy to become over confident in all this security if you own a Mac, but that’s a mistake. There have been several major Mac  virus outbreaks in recent years, and with more and more people using Apple products like the iPhone and iPad, there will surely be more to come.

There was also the recent hacking of Apple’s iCloud. There’s some concern that malware could be copied to your computer using your iCloud account or Apple ID.

As computerhope points out:

Although the Apple OS is more secure than many versions of Windows, any software, plug-ins, or other add-ons that are installed onto the computer and connect to the Internet can introduce their own security vulnerabilities. The most common ways to attack a Mac computer is through a third-party browser and browser plugins like Adobe Reader, Flash, and Java. Today, most Mac users have these plugins installed and enabled on the computer, and, in doing so, compromise the overall security of the system.

 

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So even though you may have a Mac, please make sure you have an antivirus product installed. If you’re not sure what to use, here’s a review from Macworld UK.

 

Support Ending For The Windows XP Version of Security Essentials

As I mentioned in a previous post over the summer, support for Windows XP is ending on the 8th of April. This also means Microsoft will no longer be supporting its free antivirus product, Microsoft Security Essentials, for anyone who is still running XP. I have recommended this antivirus for many people who have Windows XP systems, but this is the end of the line.

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From Microsoft:

Microsoft has provided support for Windows XP for the past 11 years. But now the time has come for us, along with our hardware and software partners, to invest our resources toward supporting more recent technologies so that we can continue to deliver great new experiences. As a result, after April 8, 2014, technical assistance for Windows XP will no longer be available, including automatic updates that help protect your PC. Microsoft will also stop providing Microsoft Security Essentials for download on Windows XP on this date.

The good news is there are still plenty of free antivirus products out there.

 

Free Antivirus Software

That’s right, there are several companies that offer 100% free antivirus software. So what’s the catch?

Free antivirus products provide absolutely no technical support if you have a problem. They won’t offer advanced features like parental controls or identity theft prevention tools like paid antivirus.  But they do provide  a bare minimum level of protection against infection and they will scan for malware in real time, and perform automatic scans, too.

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So which free antivirus is right for you? CNET has reviews for each antivirus as well as editors picks, which you can find here.

If you just want to download an antivirus for free, I suggest using Filehippo. The download links and clean, with no hoops to jump through and it doesn’t try to install any junkware or toolbars, and there’s a good amount of info on each antivirus there.

 

 

 

I have antivirus software… So how did I get infected?

I get this question all the time. “I have anti-virus software, so how did I get infected with a virus”?

Each anti-virus company has its own list of malware, which they call their “definitions”. Every company releases updated definitions regularly, usually once a day but sometimes several times a day.

www.pcoverhaul.com

Each company also has its own rules for identifying a virus that isn’t in the definitions list. If a file acts a certain way or loads itself into a certain folder, for example, your anti-virus may alert you that the file could be a virus. It also sends a message to your anti-virus company with the details about the potential new virus (the name, location and behavior). Since many of these alerts are false positives, each company has to investigate every new report before they can update the definitions.

A simple way to envision this is to imagine that every virus out there looks like a square, so your antivirus software checks every file you open or download that looks like a square. If a new virus is released that looks like a circle, it may slip through. Once the antivirus software starts looking for squares and circles, the next wave of viruses may look like a triangle, and so on. New viruses tend to stay a step or two ahead of the antivirus software.

There is usually a 24 to 72 hour window of vulnerability when a new type of threat is released. During this time, your anti-virus company must learn of the threat, perform an investigation, and then release definition updates to detect the threat.

So what can you do to help protect yourself?

There are both paid and free versions of antivirus out there, and it’s up to you which you choose to use, but make sure you do have some type of antivirus software.

Keep your antivirus updated. Most companies try to update in the hours when your computer may be turned off, so make sure you haven’t missed updates.

Check that the automatic scans are running on the schedule you have set them to run, whether it’s daily or weekly or a certain day a week.

Scan manually once in a while. Especially if you are visiting sites that would be considered higher risk-  adult (xxx) sites, gambling sites, and sites where you can get pirated versions of software, movies or music  are more likely to infect you than mainstream sites.

It is also important to always double check before clicking on an unknown link whether it’s on a website, private message, social networking (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) or in your email. If you are unsure whether a link is safe, copy the link and paste it into the search box at the free online link scanner.

If you do find yourself infected, I offer virus removal service at a flat rate.