For which software is this necessary

Windows 10: What virus protection does a Windows PC really need?

In times of increasing threats on the Internet, protection for the PC seems more essential than ever. In Windows, a virus protection called Defender works by default. Is that enough?

There is no shortage of antivirus software. Numerous developers have specialized in this. They offer free versions of their virus scanners or offer their programs to manufacturers for installation ex works on new PCs or notebooks.

And the threat situation seems to prove the abundance of offers right: The Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) is registering more and more attacks. And malware, like the Emotet ransomware, is becoming more and more dangerous. There is no alternative to good protection.

Defender has caught up

The free virus scanner Defender, which is integrated in Windows 10, has long been considered insufficient in terms of its protective effect. But recently Microsoft has caught up a lot. The Defender now offers continuously secure protection, as confirmed by the regular tests by the Magdeburg IT security institute AV-Test.

The Defender achieves very good or even top marks in the detection of malware and especially in the case of dangerous zero-day attacks, i.e. those attacks that exploit security gaps on the same day on which they were discovered. This article explains how to activate Windows Defender.

Free virus programs with high protection

Does this mean that there is no need for other antivirus software? "In fact, others no longer offer protection," says Ronald Eikenberg from the specialist magazine "c't". The free versions of the virus protection providers are all very similar and offer about the same high level of protection.

But for Eikenberg, the competitors also have a right to exist. "Many manufacturers offer personal support that the Defender does not offer." This is particularly good for inexperienced users who do not want to be left alone when faced with uncertainty. Such a service is only available in the premium versions of the virus scanner, which are subject to a fee.

These usually also contain other tools, for example for securely deleting files or for cleaning up the hard drive of garbage data. Whether these tools justify a purchase depends on the personal needs of the user. Anyone who has been using a virus scanner for years does not need to replace their usual program with the Defender if there is no reason to do so.

It looks completely different when it comes to advertising. Many free virus scanners annoy with advertisements on the desktop. Even with the paid premium versions, pop-ups that refer to other products from the manufacturer are not uncommon. Fortunately, the Defender does without such displays. Those plagued by advertising will find an unobtrusive alternative here.

Essential updates

For the Defender - as for any other antivirus software - one important rule applies: It must always be up to date.

The Defender is set at the factory so that it automatically searches for updates and installs them independently. The user does not need to intervene. It is best to leave these settings unchanged for safe and convenient operation. As with all virus scanners, the Defender cannot guarantee complete protection.

That is why it depends on the behavior of the user. "Always keep your computer up-to-date and install updates immediately," advises David Bothe from the Gelsenkirchen Institute for Internet Security, which is part of the Westphalian University of Applied Sciences. This applies in particular to the web browser, the operating system and all other programs that communicate with the network or with the Internet.

You should only download something from known and reputable sources. And it is also better not to click on links that seem suspicious. Malicious software is often hidden behind it.

more on the subject

  • Subjects:
  • Digital,
  • Technology,
  • Computer,
  • Internet,
  • Security,
  • Malware,
  • Malware,
  • Viruses,
  • Virus scanner,
  • Windows 10,
  • Windows,
  • Emotet,
  • BSI