‘Tis best to be safe than shalt be sorry. Shakespeare probably never said that. Mostly because there was no internet back then. Nor any devices connected to it. But since we all live in the information-age now, it’s time to follow the dictum laid down by writers of the present era. And they suggest we get busy protecting our Windows 10 computers.
How, you may ask? That’s exactly what we wish to cover here. To secure a Windows 10 computer will require a robust Antivirus, Anti-Malware, Anti-Ransomware and Firewall software. Of course, Microsoft has improved its own built-in systems with every iteration of Windows, but, to be on the safer side – it’s best to use some of these highly rated offerings.
The Best Antivirus Software
Viruses have been a big pain point for PC users, so using an Antivirus software makes utmost sense. There are, however, plenty of options to choose from. Picking the best might be tricky, so here are our recommendations.
This might sound like an anticlimax but the in-built antivirus service on Windows 10 is actually quite a capable tool. It automatically scans every app you open, downloads new definitions from Windows Update and provides an option for deep scanning too.
Bitdefender Internet Security
As far as third-party tools are concerned, there aren’t many that can match the feature set of Bitdefender Internet Security. Not only is it highly rated in independently conducted tests but also has multi-layered anti-ransomware and an active Do Not Track component.
Honorable Mention: F-Secure SAFE
The Best Anti-Malware Software
Viruses can cause a lot of issues on your device but it’s hard to make money off them. That’s when malware (and also ransomware) come into the picture. While some antivirus tools do have anti-malware features, the standalone apps tend to be more powerful.
Even though the free version of this malware tool is effective, the premium variant covers all the necessary bases. While the free version is recommended to work along with an antivirus tool, the premium essentially replaces it. What you also get in addition are features like Realtime protection, access to Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit, active detection of web threats and more.
If any laptop is already infected by some kind of malware, chances are that only HitmanPro.Alert will be able to fix it. HitmanPro is a very powerful security tool that can work in conjunction with an antivirus, to identify and fix issues in the deepest corners of the Operating System of your device.
Honorable Mention: Zemana AntiMalware
The Best Anti-Ransomware Software
Specialised anti-ransomware tools let you detect and fix ransomware issues that can wreak havoc. These are a good idea especially since ransomware can inject and spread quickly and may even steal your banking data.
When the WannCry ransomware was spreading, there was a great panic among users. Same with the Petya, Locky and others. The way CyberSight deals with such threats is by placing ‘smart traps’ throughout the system. These act like honeypots for the malicious ransomware, which can then be effectively neutralised.
Kaspersky Anti-Ransomware Tool
Kaspersky Labs has a good approach to newer threats that crop up and their anti-ransomware tool is excellent. It is free to download and use and has many features that can effectively monitor and deal with ransomware injections like few others.
Honorable Mention: Malwarebytes Anti-Ransomware BETA
The Best Firewall Software
Firewalls differ from the above listed software in one major way – they monitor network traffic over all the ports. They can even disable communication via a specific port, if need be. While Microsoft has done exceedingly well in updating their own default firewall, there are others that can be more powerful.
Microsoft’s own solution to detecting incoming threats is great and will work well for most users. It not only does active scanning of threats but also alerts you whenever one is detected. It is very easy to configure and manage, while using very few resources to run.
ZoneAlarm was well known in the late 90s and early noughties for making firewall solutions for end-users that are more powerful and yet were available for free. It continues to build on those strengths and has even added new features like a “Full Stealth Mode” that lets you hide your computer in a connected network.
While there are some companies that have created one-stop solutions for all these threats, it is hard to recommend just one. That’s why we have broken down the bits and pieces of the most well-known products that can perhaps help you decide whether you want to use just a few or perhaps all, or go for the all-in-one.