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Best Computer Security Software

Best Computer Security Software

The World Wide Web can be a dangerous place for a computer, as behind every download and web application, lurks a virus or spyware program waiting to invade it. At the same time, internal threats can appear in the form of removable media and devices. Scared? Don't be. Installing any one of the security software below, will protect your machine against the worst of threats. Scroll below to see the top computer protection programs.
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Security is always an issue, when it comes to computers. Viruses, malware, trojan worms, spyware... all are nasty little programs which, like termites, love to burrow deep into some unsuspecting computer and destroy it slowly. And then there's the issue of Internet security. Your online identity should authenticate you correctly to various applications, at the same time, should remain private. The solution to all these problems and threats is, a capable and efficient computer security software. This is actually a broad term, meant to encompass all types of computer security mechanisms and programs, such as antivirus and anti-spyware software or parental controls. Antivirus can come as a standalone software or suite program. In standalone software, the program just handles virus and harmful program threats, some may handle spyware. Standalone software has limited functionality. But a complete computer security suite has a myriad of different programs or departments, such as handling viruses and spyware, acting as parental control software and handling your computer's safety online.

Check out the license or warranty provided with security software. Some programs can only be used on 1 PC, so if you have multiple computers, buy smart and purchase a security program which provides multiple licenses.

Top Computer Security Suites

I. Kaspersky PURE
  • Complete protection suite with antivirus, data protection and parental control functions
  • Defends your PC against the very worst of viruses, worms and malware
  • Easy and simple usage through interface with central management
  • Can create a backup of data and restore it when needed
  • Data Encryption feature encrypts your sensitive data for maximum security
  • Extra tough with password protection, even collects and stores passwords on your pen drive
  • Parental control feature allows monitoring and blocking of Web sites and access, even with social networking sites
  • Comes in 1 and 2 year licenses
  • Comes with 1, 3 or 5 PC licenses
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP3
  • Price: $100
II. Norton 360™ Version 5.0
  • Suite designed for protection against viruses, phishing and malicious online activities
  • Backup 2 GB of your important data
  • Handles your online privacy with emphasis on social networking activities
  • Norton Safe Web Social Media Scanner checks for security threats on your Facebook profile
  • Very PC friendly - proactive performance alerts and auto PC tuneup
  • Parental control ability included with updated monitoring
  • Available in 1, 2 and 3 year licenses
  • Comes with 1 and 5 PC licenses
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP2 or higher
  • Price: $60
III. Webroot SecureAnywhere™ Complete 2012
  • Completely scans your PC for threats in 2 minutes
  • Program will automatically update itself when needed
  • Smart threat detection; does not allow harmful websites to open, pre-determines threats based on behavior
  • Encrypts sensitive data (like passwords) and blocks Internet threats (hackers, phishing attacks)
  • Offers multi-device (tablet/iPhone/Android phone) threat protection and Internet safety
  • Will auto back up 10 GB of data to an online server
  • Can perform remote wipe on Android tablet or smartphone
  • Additional security tools include network monitor and firewall
  • Comes with 3 PC licenses and 3 tablet/smartphone licenses
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP2/SP3
  • Price: $80
IV. BitDefender Total Security 2012
  • Handles virus, malware and Internet threats
  • Intense security features like Rescue mode, Vulnerability Scanner and Virtualized Browser
  • Checks if sites are safe or not in advance and issues warnings accordingly
  • Protects against phishing attacks, encrypts files and chat conversations and deletes spam
  • Autopilot security feature handles most security-related actions on its own
  • Backup 2 GB of data to a secure remote server
  • Offers parental controls and firewall
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP3
  • Price: $35
Best Computer Security Standalone Programs

I. ZoneAlarm Antivirus + Firewall 2012
  • Double protection offered with two-way firewall
  • Firewall continuously monitors programs and immediately halts malicious behavior
  • Scans files as they are being downloaded and stops downloading if threat is detected
  • Can detect viruses, spyware and other software threats as well as protects your privacy with antiphishing mechanisms
  • Warns when web sites are malicious and has an anti-spam filter
  • Program allows you to schedule backups of data and encrypt backed up files
  • Comes with 3 PC licenses
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP2/SP3
  • Price: $30
II. BitDefender Antivirus Plus 2012
  • Program scans for viruses silently and efficiently when system is idle
  • Helps protect your online identity with antiphishing mechanisms, chat encryption and social network link filtering
  • Autopilot feature automatically manages security details, so you don't need to handle internal settings
  • Smart security features like Search Advisor, Virtualized Browser and Rescue mode
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP3
  • Price: $30
For users of the Mac OS, check out BitDefender Antivirus for Mac

III. G Data AntiVirus 2012
  • Standalone antivirus/email/chatting/spyware/online shopping scanning system
  • Even when your PC is idle, Idle Scan feature scans PC for viruses
  • Very effective and up-to-date handling of different types of viruses
  • Analysis of risky files or suspected virus containing data, is carried out through cloud system
  • Comes with 1 year license and free trial version
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP2
  • Price: $30
IV. Norton Antivirus 2012
  • All-round protection against online and offline threats
  • Very powerful security mechanisms with 4 different data protection layers
  • Quick, non-interfering virus scanning that consumes minimal resources
  • Improved user-friendly UI allows easy management and program handling
  • Insight 2.0 program scans applications before installing them and warns of potential threats
  • Program is cloud based, so carry out updates and renewals anywhere
  • Program allows you to create a recovery disc for emergency booting
  • Auto updates itself every 15 minutes without the need for human input
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista and XP SP2
  • Available in 1, 2, 3 year licenses
  • Price: $40
V. ProtectMac AntiVirus
  • Specifically designed for the Mac OS
  • File-access scanner runs in background, tracking each file activity and displaying any threats to security
  • User-friendly and streamlined UI, designed to fit in with Mac OS design
  • FileSafe feature allows you to exclude or cut out certain files from being scanned every time
  • Adaptive Intelligent Scanning monitors and watches your favorite files and data and makes them a security priority
  • Diverse range of scans available such as, scheduled or planned, scanning of removable devices and real-time access scans
  • Auto updates itself and keeps its threat database up-to-date
  • Compatible with Mac OS X 10.4.7 and higher versions
  • 1 purchased license covers 3 separate Mac machines
  • Price: $45
Having a software smart enough to auto update and keep itself savvy with the latest threats as well providing an easy interface for management, is the key to success and efficiency of any computer security program. Seen but not heard or running quietly in the background, like a silent bodyguard, are features prized in antivirus programs. The list of best security software never stays constant, as the competition in this market is fierce. Each manufacturer is always trying to improve on the existing feature set and functions. The more programs available, the more options consumers have to choose from and be selective with!