You might not believe how many people are totaly unaware of the antivirus situation on their computer. Some folks are still using the free-trial antivirus that came with a pc they have owned for years. Even though it shows up on the desktop it's effectivness has dwindled to zero after the trial ends - usually within 60 days.
In today's internet, current updated virus protection should be standard equipment on any PC. And if your computer is a home PC you may not need to pay for one of the big name brands. They will slow your machine down by running tons background processes that you probably don't even need. Free does not necessarily mean inferior but less gizmos. All you really need is the virus or malware protection provided by most of the free antivirus applications available today.
Please understand that with all the different variations of malware out there no antvirus (paid for or not) will catch 100% of them 100% of the time no matter what their claims are. However, if you have no protection the odds are almost 100% certain that you will snag a bug or two hundred. We have removed as many as 4500 malware related files at one time. At this point we always recomend a complete operating system reset. So it's best to have an antivirus that runs daily, updates, and works in real time.
Here are a couple of free antivirus programs that does just that.
AVG FREE is our first choice as I have used it for years on my home computer and it has always worked well with very little resource expenditure.
PC Magazine rated AVG in it's top three stating "Good scores in independent lab tests and in PCMag's hands-on tests. Decent antiphishing score. Speedy full scan. Website rating and Do Not Track. File shredder. PC tuneup."
Although the "PC Tuneup" feature is offered with this package, I would just say no as we are, after all, only looking for a decent antivirus app at this time.
AVG will promote itself from time to time and try to get you to buy the premium package with a pop up or two but you only have to decline. The program won't bother you all that much. The price you pay for something free. Don't worry as these are legitimate and harmless.
When you install AVG remember to uncheck the aditional languages box and activate the auto scanning. To activate scheduled scanning go to the upper right hand corner and click on "Options" then "advanced settings" then "Schedules" then "Scheduled Scan". You can then choose when and how often to scan. By the way, AVG works well with Windows 10.
AVAST FREE is another free antivirus program that we have used in the past. We were pleased with the overall performance and small resorce reqirements as well. Avast will also run scheduled scans or on demand. You will also find a basic password manager included in the package that can be used or not. If you don't mind registering this free product once a year then you are good to go.
PC Magazine says "Avast Free Antivirus 2016 scores high in independent lab tests and in our own tests, especially our antiphishing test. Bonus features like the new password manager and innovative router security scan make it an excellent choice for free antivirus protection." Avast was also rated in the top three antivirus programs at PC Mag and is also compatible with Windows 10.