Do I need to install an antivirus on a Windows PC

Most computers running the Windows operating system have anti-virus protection installed – a specialized application that performs all the necessary functions to ensure PC security. Some users think about whether an antivirus is needed, whether it is worth using such software on their computer.

In favor of one or another option, there are arguments “for” or “against”. The user himself will have to choose: do you need an antivirus on Windows, or in the realities of today it makes no sense to use such a program to protect the system.

Many people believe that if modern operating systems are well protected, and the user is guided by common sense in his actions, is careful on the network, then you should not use antivirus software on your computer. In their understanding, antivirus is needed only for inexperienced users or those who like to conduct various experiments.

Others, on the contrary, believe that in view of the multitude of potential threats, an antivirus must be installed on a computer.

This article addresses issues related to the problems of protecting a PC from a virus threat. We will analyze whether it is necessary to install an antivirus on Windows, or you can do without installing such an application on your device.

The Windows operating system is the most popular in the world. There are fundamental differences between different versions of the Microsoft OS, especially in the level of security. Therefore, we will separately talk about whether an antivirus is needed for Windows 10.

The purpose of the antivirus

The main purpose of an antivirus is to find malware before it can harm your computer. Modern antiviruses have two main parts: a virus scanner and a virus monitor.

The anti-virus scanner is launched at the user’s request manually or according to a schedule to fully scan the contents of PC drives, or individual folders and files, depending on the settings of this component.

Antivirus Monitor selectively scans files based on their activity. The anti-virus monitor must be constantly running on the computer, otherwise it will not be of any use.

When checking, the antivirus finds dangerous code, checking its signatures against its databases. In addition to signature checking, antiviruses use heuristic analysis to try to detect malicious programs based on a combination of several factors based on their behavior.

A firewall (firewall, firewall) is used to prevent the transmission of unwanted information over the network: downloading malicious software, data theft, remote control of a computer, etc. The firewall blocks incoming and outgoing connections, depending on the set blocking rules or access permissions for programs .

When using an antivirus on a computer, adhere to the following general recommendations that increase the security of using a PC:

  • Always use the automatic database update feature when connected to the Internet.
  • Make sure that the anti-virus monitor is constantly running on the computer.
  • Do not disable protective modules unnecessarily if you do not fully understand what the result of your actions will be.
  • Do not ignore antivirus messages. Always read them carefully, and if possible, follow the recommendations of the antivirus.
  • Perform initial and periodic checks on your device.
  • Check external media when you connect them to your computer.

Some useful tips for using a firewall:

  • The firewall must always be enabled when the PC has an Internet connection.
  • Spend time setting up a firewall, create rules for your computer software.
  • View firewall information about blocked activities to identify malicious software that the antivirus did not respond to.

Nowadays, cybercriminals are primarily interested in financial gain. Therefore, users need to take special care of the safety and confidentiality of their data.

Do I need to install an antivirus – “no”

When answering the question of whether an antivirus is needed on a computer, some users argue that such software is useless on Windows devices: a laptop or a stationary PC.

Basically, these users, according to them, perform the following actions: immediately after installing the operating system on the computer, they turn off Windows Defender, do not use antivirus for several years, they are careful on the Internet, and their PC has never been infected. The maximum they do is once a month they check the system using a third-party antivirus scanner that does not require installation.

In addition, some users disable the installation of Windows updates. Because installing updates on a computer can cause problems in its operation, frequent “major” updates of Windows 10 are also very annoying, in fact, this is a reinstallation of the system over the previous version.

I will list the reasons why antiviruses seem useless:

  • Antiviruses slow down the operation of the operating system and installed programs.
  • Antivirus has a lot of unnecessary features.
  • Antiviruses gain access to user data.
  • Antiviruses constantly show annoying messages.
  • Modern browsers provide a sufficient level of security.
  • Antiviruses allow false positives.
  • Antiviruses do not provide 100% protection.

In order not to use an antivirus on your PC, the user must adhere to the following rules:

  • Regularly install updates for the Windows operating system.
  • Timely update installed programs from the official websites of manufacturers.
  • Do not visit dubious resources on the Internet.
  • Do not download software from suspicious sites.
  • Periodically check the system using a virus scanner.
  • Check downloaded files using specialized online services.
  • All email attachments must be checked.
  • Care must be taken before performing any operation on the computer.
  • You should disable autorun from external media in the OS.
  • Make regular backups of your system and important files.
  • Run unknown software in an isolated environment or in a virtual machine.
  • Use programs to “freeze” the system.

But, even these actions will not help protect your computer in many situations. For example, due to the human factor, because people are not robots, they physically cannot be extremely attentive and careful all the time.

Do I need an antivirus for Windows – “yes”

Ideally, a good antivirus should run quietly in the background and only make itself known in the event of a potential threat. But, it is not uncommon for antivirus software to affect system performance, especially when starting a PC. The speed of opening sites, programs or documents depends on the actions of the anti-virus monitor.

Most antiviruses have optimized their interaction with the system; under normal conditions, the operation of antivirus software does not affect the performance of the computer. PC slowdown is possible if an infection is detected and when treatment is performed from its consequences.

Do not forget about miners stealing computer performance. It is difficult for the user to find and identify such software on their own, and the antivirus will cope with this problem much better.

No program or operating system can be perfect and perfect, so manufacturers regularly release patches, mainly to close security holes. Therefore, the overall level of Windows security increases from release to release.

Attackers attack applications through various vulnerabilities in the code that allow hackers to gain access to data or administrator rights. By not updating the system and applications, you leave a huge number of loopholes that sooner or later cybercriminals can use to steal your data.

The software contains unreported vulnerabilities discovered by attackers. After the gaps are closed, new “holes” are found in the program code. Websites are hacked on the Internet, after visiting which infection can occur.

Therefore, common sense does not always help, because elementary inattention, from which no one is immune, can lead to an error.

Browsers warn users about a potential threat, check downloaded files. But, the antivirus blocks the execution of malicious code much more effectively than an Internet browser.

Users often use online banking on their devices. The anti-virus protects the user’s funds when performing financial transactions using the secure payment function.

The danger is represented by various keyloggers, spies, extortionists, with the help of which attackers want to gain access to user data in order to quietly steal the necessary information or demand a ransom for unlocking the system.

A modern antivirus has many built-in components designed to provide reliable protection. In addition to file antivirus to fight trojans, worms, rootkits and other types of viruses, the application has tools to protect user data, email antivirus, a password manager, etc.

In the event of a virus infection incident, the use of a backup will help restore the system and user data from an archived copy. But, the backup may contain malware that was not active in any way until Windows was backed up. In this case, a system restore will not fix the security problems on the computer.

Windows freezing programs, such as Shadow Defender or Toolwiz Time Freeze , are able to restore the operating system in case of a virus infection. But, unlike antivirus, they will not save the PC from stealing user data.

While running in a virtual environment, malicious software can access user data and then send it to an attacker over the Internet. After the user ends the session, the system and applications will return to their original form, which they had before the computer was started, the viruses will be removed, but the data will be stolen.

Antivirus does not provide 100% protection, but such an indicator is impossible in principle. All new detected viruses are detected and added to anti-virus databases, so PC protection works at a sufficient level.

It must be remembered that the most reliable antivirus is the user himself, because the level of computer protection largely depends on his direct actions.

Do I need to install antivirus on Windows 10

The Windows 10 operating system has a built-in antivirus – Windows Defender, also known by the names: Microsoft Defender, Windows Defender, Windows Security, Microsoft Defender. This is a good antivirus, Microsoft has managed to raise its product to a level comparable to the best antivirus software.

The Windows 10 operating system has a built-in Windows Firewall, so the computer is initially under comprehensive protection.

Whether Windows 10 needs a third-party antivirus is up to users to decide on their own based on their own preferences. For example, some of them are used to a certain antivirus program or do not trust the built-in system tool.

Once installed on a computer, a third-party antivirus disables Windows Defender because it is now protecting the PC. Parallel operation of two antiviruses slows down Windows.

If you are using third-party solutions, it is better to use programs like “Internet Security” or “Total Security”, which include additional security modules and a firewall. The use of such applications improves the overall security of your computer.

Article Conclusions

Most users have anti-virus software installed on their Windows computers to protect the system from the risk of infection. Other users do not use antivirus tools on their devices. Therefore, whether it is necessary to install an antivirus on a PC, each user decides for himself. When deciding this issue, it is necessary to take into account all the possible consequences regarding security that can hypothetically occur on a computer as a result of making a particular decision.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.