As a computer repairs business, we know virus removal, malware and how to prevent it. Read our top product recommendations for the best internet security software for Windows or Mac OSX! We recommend you install at least one of these products for the best malware protection against malicious attacks, annoying popups and identity theft.

Top 10 Best Internet Security Software – October 2018

Product
Overall Rating
Lowest Price
Key Features
Free Trial?
Devices Protected
Tech Support?
PC & Mac?
Mobile Devices?
System Optimizer?
AVG Internet Security Unlimitted Logo


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Winner - Best performance


YES

Unlimited

YES

YES

YES

YES
Avast Logo


see discount

2nd - Great for the family

YES

1-10

YES

YES

YES

YES
Bitdefender Logo


see discount

3rd - Soild all rounder


YES

1-5

YES

YES

YES

YES

ESET Internet Security Logo


see it

Great all-rounder

YES

1

YES

YES

YES

NO
Kaspersky Logo


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Multi Device Protection

YES

5

YES

YES

YES

NO
Trend Micro Logo


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Automated & easy to use

YES

2-6

YES

YES

YES

YES

Norton Logo


see it

Excellent tech support features

YES

1-5

YES

YES

YES

YES
Malwarebytes Logo


see it

Unique detection methods. Very effective

YES

1

YES

YES

YES

NO
Panda Antivirus


see it

Great value for money virus protection

YES

1-3

YES

YES

YES

YES
Bullguard antivirus


see it

Awesome value for money virus protection

YES

1-10

YES

YES

YES

NO

Alexander Burchill

Alex B – Editor & Computer Tech

”Malicious software and the threats it presents are growing faster than ever and fortunately for us, the latest internet security software products are equipped to handle the vast majority of malicious attacks. Simply put, you get what you pay for when it comes to free internet security vs paid internet security for PC. If you’re asking yourself the question – What is the best security protection for either Windows or Mac? We’ve done the hard work and reviewed the top 10 internet security for you. Every paid or free PC security program we recommend below in our list is worth your investment. The differences between these best security software are minor and they all perform extremely well in our tests.”

What is Internet Security Software and What Does It Do?

The internet is fully trusted by many users who are otherwise unaware of the risks. As an internet user, you may trust your ability to browse safely but it is a more insecure channel than you think. There are many high-risk factors such as vulnerability to phishing, intrusion or fraud which has led to a need for software specializing in internet security.

There are many variations of internet security software geared towards the internet. Programs like these seek to protect the user or network from threats. Internet security is a branch of security related to the internet. Internet security establishes measures and rules to help prevent and fight against all kinds of attacks accomplished over the internet. With the worldwide web growing exponentially faster and users becoming more cunning, protection becomes even more relevant.

 

How Different Types of Internet Security Software Work?

There are many different remedies for internet threats. Depending on what kind of internet protection software you are using, the software’s main intent is to protect, detect and prevent. These programs normally run quietly in the background of your computer’s usual tasks. Network layer security is one way to protect a device. This can be secured by using security protocols and cryptographic methods. Transport layer security is used for web traffic while PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) is used for email while IPsec is the entire network layer security. Many best VPN providers can also offer useful services for enhancing internet security.

IPsec (Internet Protocol Security) was created to help protect TCP/IP communications. It was created by the Internet Task Force (IETF) and helps provide authentication by using encryption to transfer data at the IP layer. The basic components of IPsec include:

  • Automatic key and manual management for IKE (Internet Key Exchange)
  • Encryption and authentication algorithms
  • AH and ESP security protocols
  • Traffic processing and policy management for security association

These services help to provide integrity of the data origin, access control, confidentiality and anti-replay protection. An interesting note about this security method is that the sets function independently without having to affect other aspects of implementation because of the algorithm. This method is most used to provide protection to IP traffic.

Authentication codes and keys are another way to implement security. These methods require secret keys that are delivered by phone, email or other encrypted or private messaging systems so that full approval is granted before entering anywhere secure. This type of internet security software is commonly used for bank and university logins. A higher level of this modem of security includes security tokens. This is known as a 6-digit code that changes randomly every 60 seconds or so. The tokens are normally generated by a different site or portal than the one the user is attempting to access.

Email or electronic mail also requires a level of security. Each message is composed, sent and then transformed into a more standard format so it can be delivered and received without an issue. Pretty Good Privacy or PGP helps to provide internet security and confidentiality through encrypting the email body. Other methods of protecting emails includes the addition of the ability to sign documents and emails as if they were physical. This ensures integrity and helps to confirm the sender’s identity.

Firewalls are another great source for internet protection. These software types provide restrictions for outgoing and incoming network packets. It implements these restrictions in and out of private networks and requires that all traffic is routed through the firewall. Only approved and safe traffic can proceed to pass through it. This method is commonly referred to as “choke points”. Firewalls can dually serve as IPSec platforms and can implement virtual private networks.

The three top products for internet security can be categorized into three types:

  • Password managers
  • Anti-virus
  • Security suites

Password managers help to organize and store passwords securely with master passwords or encryptions McAfee packages are good illustrative examples of what security suites are. These normally contain anti-spyware, anti-virus and firewall protection. Anti-virus programs live up to their title, they help eliminate and detect possible viruses.

There are many other methods of internet security such as simply choosing safer browsers. Internet Explorer is considered a very insecure browser while Google Chrome is noted for being more secure. Vulnerabilities present themselves in different ways through browsers so it is generally suggested to acquire exterior protection as well.

 

Who is Internet Security Software For?

Although you may trust your browser entirely and have not encountered any issues thus far, internet security software is recommended for anyone that is using the internet. This need is emphasized by anyone that accesses bank information, school records, private profiles or other more serious information sectors. If you run a business that involves the transfer of money, the need for internet security is highly stressed. At the simplest level, if you wonder or worry about information being stolen or being exposed to other fraudulent activity, it is likely best for you to saddle up with a form of internet security.

Even simply accessing social media platforms, reading through spam email as well as watching movies online can leave you exposed to potential threats. With Dropbox, the Cloud and other virtual transfer methods, it is frighteningly easy to accidentally download viruses or dangerous materials to your device without even knowing it. Facebook can be safely used of course but their downloadable games and increasing advertisement has led to an increase in possible virus infection. If you use the internet, you need protection. Parents might also consider decent protection software that includes internet filtering.

 

Why do I Need Internet Security Software?

If you fit any of the criteria above, you are likely in need of internet security programs. This software is very beneficial because its sole purpose is to covet your information and prevent any unnecessary leaks or vulnerability to threats. It is easy to underestimate the power of a digital attack and malicious content. These come in various forms like spyware, Trojan horses, viruses and worms.

You may be familiar with computer viruses and malware. These programs are capable of replicating throughout a computer. Viruses are also called “infections”. The aim of these attacks is to steal data and information. Malware works similarly but works hard to disrupt computer functions to hide the theft of sensitive information. Sometimes this is called “badware”. Computer worms also replicate throughout a device but as they travel throughout the system, they leave behind damage.

Keyloggers, also known as keyboard capturing or keylogging, are incredibly dangerous for any internet user. The function lives up to the title. Once downloaded or activated, without protection, your passwords and personal information are all recorded through the computer keyboard strokes. Nothing is safe without preventative measures.

Ransomware and spyware are other examples of online threats that call for increased protection. If you use your device for private information, the absence of internet security software is likely to become horribly obvious. Remaining exposed to these possibilities opens the door for your information to be leaked, used against you or used in malicious ways. A simple example to consider is the importance of your credit card number. Without proper protection, this information could be easily stolen.

 

What are the Pros and Cons of Using Internet Security Software?

Sometimes technology users who prefer high running capacity and processing speed disagree with the use of some forms of internet security. Although considered incredibly necessary, there have always been a few negative aspects. It has been reported a few times that running certain programs cause a decrease in system speed. Some programs require higher RAM usage while scanning. Boot up time may also decrease. It is recommended prior to purchase or download that the machine specs are consulted to avoid future issues.

Some preliminary positive things to remember is the generally increased safety from the use of internet security software. At times, consumers that are seeking for good protection at a budget may note the intense pricing on some software. However, it is important to consider the quality and functions of the program. Comparing several programs and computer requirements is suggested by many professionals.

Other positive aspects to think of include the comfort that may come with enabled protection. Without that kind of security, passwords and other parts of important information are always at exposure for theft. But with the right program, navigating the internet becomes far less risky. Any time money is involved, the loss should be considered before the cost.

 

What are the Main Features to Look for in Internet Security Software?

There are a few attributes and functions to keep in mind while you move towards making a final decision on software type. Since “theft” is one of the first conjured thoughts when you think about the reason for protection, please consider the level of privacy, and theft and data protection first. Your information is important and many of our devices are connected through credentials. Often once access is gained to one device, the others can become compromised.

If something were to go wrong, the software you chose should be able to provide a secure backup. This backup should also be thoroughly protected from possible third party attempts at access. Normally when a software offers backups, it also provides rescue and cleanup mode which allows the device to boot up in a trusted, safe environment to avoid possible infection or attack. Data restoration and protection are crucial aspects of a full shield.

Another thing to consider when choosing security types is the level of strength the firewall possesses. The best software in security provides a robust firewall that normally acts in a two-way function instead of just one. Other functions include monitoring internet connections to prevent strangers from connecting to your network. There are many misleading names in the protection industry with clever branding, but understanding the scope of functions and aspects of a software can help make a more knowledgeable investment.

The last thing to remember is the software’s ability to protect you in the event of both a virtual attack as well as a physical. Although many things are done remotely, if physical access is gained to a device, information can be left exposed. Good internet security software ensures some extra levels of protection including some of the previously discussed methods like password managers, security tokens and unique codes. First, consider the limitations of your device and the severity of need for information protection, next, think about the distance you want to extend the shield.

Common FAQs Internet Security Software

Getting a handle on what you need to stay safe on the internet can be a bit challenging. You may still have lingering questions or curiosities. Please read through the common question section for some extra insight.

What is Internet Security Software?

Software that protects you from threats that originate from online, including malware, phishing and other similar threats.

So who really needs internet security software?

If you use the internet at all, you should have some level of security for protection. Free internet security products such as Windows Defender really don’t offer the comprehensive protection you need.

How do I know which software to choose?

Think of this purchase or download an investment for a safer future. Be sure to check all your computer specs and capacity. Internet security software usually has run requirements to function most efficiently. Your computer specs should be located under system preferences.

I’ve heard of malware a lot, what is it?

Malware is an umbrella term that represents any program with unauthorized malicious functions. Some examples are Trojan viruses, spyware, keyloggers and password stealers.

I only use the internet to check my Facebook, should I even bother?

Yes, Facebook contains more information than you think. It normally has your first and last name along with your birthday, past schools and jobs, even the names of all your friends and family. If you play games on Facebook, you may have input a credit card number. That can be easily stolen. Facebook also has numerous advertisements that commonly relink to less secure and more dangerous sites.

I set up my home network, doesn’t that mean I’m safe?

Purchasing and setting up your own personal network does not guarantee safety. Even if it is password protected, without extra security, clever internet users with the right maneuvers can enter your network and cause many problems.