So, you have decided to get an antivirus for your PC or Mac, right?
Now, you have two options: first, you can get a premium antivirus security package from the market, by paying something decent. The second option is to go for a completely free computer security programs.
Quite naturally, most of you do prefer the second option. We do understand that you don’t really want to spend more money on software products & services — especially if there is a free alternative.
We do understand that you don’t really want to spend more money on software products & services — especially if there is a free alternative.
However, have you ever thought about the dark side of the free antivirus concept?
Unlike what most of you believe, free antivirus programs are not really free. They can pose some serious security threats for privacy and safety of customers.
If you give value to your privacy and confidentiality of data you handle, you should know about these issues.
Why Should You Not Use Free PC Security Programs?
In this article, I have listed out some of the potential risks of using free computer security programs, on your home PC or for work.
#1 They Don’t Really Protect Our Devices
Here’s the scenario about antivirus programs. Almost every Computer Security developer offers some kind of free antivirus program. They also assure you the best protection, with these packages.
At the same time, they always want you to upgrade to the premium plans — by showing pop-ups and other advertisements. If you haven’t found something wrong there, you should start thinking now.
According to the many tests and surveys, the level of protection offered by Free Security programs is quite lower. That is, the security may not protect you from zero-day threats or even the prevalent threats you see in the industry.
This is quite a serious problem, especially if you use your computer for advanced tasks. For instance, there is no assurance that the free antivirus will scan all the downloaded files and find threats.
So, the lack of actual computer protection is a big risk here, for sure.
#2 Annoying Pop-Ups And Ads
We mentioned that developers always compel you to upgrade. They never say that the free antivirus is bad or anything. On the other hand, you keep seeing some annoying advertisements and pop-ups across the PC.
These may appear when you’re doing something really important. In the case of most free antivirus, there is no option to turn off these notifications. In addition to being annoying, these have some other problems too.
Some developers use the same advertisement space for third-parties. So, another advertising network can display its advertisements on your screen. If you know about Malvertising and scam attacks, you would know the real issue here.
In short, by allowing the antivirus developer to show you annoying ads everywhere, you are actually posing some threats to security and privacy.
#3 They May Contain Malware
This does not happen when you download a free protection suite from trusted developers, like Bitdefender or Kaspersky. However, there are some really nasty free antivirus products you will find on the market.
They are, in most cases, disguised and may contain serious malware in them. Fascinated by the claims and a bunch of claimed features, you might have installed those programs too.
As it turns out, these programs can do more harm than good. They may not necessarily install malware on a PC.
On the other hand, they can open up some back doors or exploit some vulnerabilities in your computer. Obviously, these are enough for a hacker to get remote access to your computer.
So, if you don’t download the right free antivirus from the right source, you risk damaging your privacy and devices.
#4 The Lack Of Support
Have you ever seen quality support for the so-called free antivirus programs? We bet you haven’t. And, that is where the whole issue of support begins.
There is nothing you can do if something goes wrong with free antivirus programs. Suppose there are some issues with a feature and you cannot scan a particular file.
As long as you are on the free label, you don’t have the right to complain or to reach out to the Support Team. This can be a serious issue if something happens to the files in protected devices.
For those who need technical support throughout the process of protection, this is a big-enough threat for sure. After all, you would not want to mess with your valuable data or privacy, would you?
Obviously, there are some other PC threats too.
For instance, you would be missing out some really necessary features, such as Anti-Ransomware Protection or Anti-Phishing protection. There are few more drawbacks of getting free virus protection.
First of all, understand that you have to pay money for security software as well.
It makes enough sense to spend money for your own protection — be it for your privacy or simple data. And, when you make your selection, let it be from trusted developers.
I don’t want you to spend your valuable money on something spammy or less-useful. At the end of everything, the only objective is to Stay Secure!
What do you think about computer security applications that are available for free?