Difference between Antivirus and Internet Security

Key Difference: Antivirus or anti-virus software is a software that is used to prevent viruses from entering the computer system and infecting files. Many antivirus programs these days also eliminate different kinds of malware in addition to viruses. Internet security software is a similar in nature to anti-malware software because it protects the user from various malware in addition to just viruses. Internet security software works to completely protect the user against various kinds of threats that they can encounter online.

Just as it has become quite easy to find everything online, it has also become the best place to target people for personal information. There are many different malware that are looking out to harm the computer system or collect private data about the user. Fear not, there are companies that have built software and programs that can protect the user’s system. These are known as Antivirus and Antimalware software.

Antivirus or anti-virus software is a software that is used to prevent viruses from entering the computer system and infecting files. Many antivirus programs these days also eliminate different kinds of malware in addition to viruses. The main purpose of an antivirus software is to scan, detect, prevent and remove many different kinds of software. The software employs a variety of strategies to detect viruses including searching for known patterns of data within executable code. However, the computer is still vulnerable against new types of viruses that may use different codes.

In order to counter this, many antivirus programs use heuristics, which is a technique that is designed to solve a problem more quickly than a classic method. This is done by creating an approximate solution when the classical solution fails. Initially, only executable files were corrupted or infected with viruses but with the new viruses, many files could also become infected requiring antivirus programs to manually search all files and folders that are available in the system. There are also drawbacks to having antivirus programs such as false-positive. This is when the antivirus program detects a non-malicious file as a virus and deletes it from the system. If the file is an important file, it could cause the operating system to stop working or certain applications to crash. Hence, files should be reviewed before they are deleted from the system.

Internet security software is a similar in nature to anti-malware software because it protects the user from various malware in addition to just viruses. Internet security software works to completely protect the user against various kinds of threats that they can encounter online. Internet security is a suite of many software assembled into one package that aims at completely protecting the system from multiple malware, hacker attacks, spam, phishing, identity theft, firewall, etc.

The major components of an Internet security software revolved around an anti-virus, firewall and identity theft software. The antivirus plus a scanner protects the users from viruses infecting their computer, while a firewall restricts outsiders from the internet from gaining access to the computer of the user. It also blocks foreign and domestic applications from communicating without the user’s permission. In addition to virus and firewall, the internet security software also provides a safer environment to saving and sharing sensitive information. It also blocks spyware from spying and reporting user activities.

Antivirus and internet security software go hand-in-hand as an antivirus plays an important part in the bulk software. Many people claim that a simple antivirus software should be enough for the computers but experts suggest that is best to purchase an internet security package for people that are not techies when it comes to computers. Purchasing depends on the user and his/her needs.

Image Courtesy: ideologics.co.uk, us.norton.com

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