ANTI-VIRUS SOFTWARE (Updated as needed)

    If you have a PC and use it on the internet, you should have one Anti-Virus program installed and up-to-date. To many machines do not have one or if one is installed, the Virus Database is not the latest. In many cases, the automatic updating of the DB is turned off. New and more sophisticated virus's appear every day and the AV companies do their best to keep up; testing what a virus is and does and creating rules to clean or remove them.

    Once you have an A/V program installed, it will generally do these tasks automatically...
  • Examine incoming email for suspicious internet links and hidden code
  • Examine the websites you visit and warn you if something potentially harmful is seen
  • Update the A/V database on at least a daily basis
    Some will be automatically set up to constantly scan your hard drive when the machine is idol.  In reality, this can slow things down. All A/V programs have a mode to manually run a computer scan or schedule one to run at some specified time. I prefer the scheduled scan method. I have all my machines to run a complete scan, one day a week (Sunday) starting at 10pm. Usually A/V programs will allow the system to shut down when the scan is complete. A full scan can take several hours, depending in the amount of data on the hard drive(s).

    Each A/V program will have their own way of applying settings, so once you install one, go through the various "Settings" dialogs and see what you can do. Make your settings, save them and sit back. When installing new A/V software, have it run an initial scan. Some will do this automatically or provide you a message that it should be done.

    The following is a list of recommended A/V software. There are many more. They are broken down in to two groups: "FREE" and "SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED". Those in the "FREE" category that are marked with a "$" also have paid versions that usually contain more security functions. All items listed are links to the publishers website. When downloading any of the free versions, the download could be redirected to a different website. While this is ok, look out for added, unwanted tag-along programs. They can be annoying. If you see something, either un check the check-box or select the Decline or Decline All button. It is a sneaky way of installing the extra unwanted software. CNET is noted for this type of "deception". Adobe does this also.

($ - Paid version available  --  # = MAC versions  --  @ = Smart Phone versions)
FREE (# =  Paid Version Available)

These are just a few of many available. The "Free" list has them in order we see most recommended.