How good is Windows Defender? Can it protect you from advanced and sophisticated malware, or should you invest in premium antivirus software? We will answer all common questions about Windows Defender, which is the default antivirus program that comes with Windows.
In the past few years, cybercriminals have become much more cruel, which has led to more cyberattacks. Every 39 seconds, a cyberattack occurs, according to reliable statistics. Every single day, AV-TEST claims to detect over 350,000 new malware samples. Moreover, Google discovers about 50 malicious websites every week, according to reports. Because every internet user is a potential victim, it’s your responsibility to use reliable antivirus software to protect your devices and data.
What is Windows Defender Antivirus?
The name Windows Defender has become synonymous with antivirus software and, unsurprisingly, it is often mentioned in discussions about antivirus software.
But just because it’s popular doesn’t mean it’s good, because some people have doubts about how well it works. Even though Microsoft recently improved it, its free status still triggers skepticism among users. Free antivirus solutions rarely end well, as we have learned from experience.
While Windows Defender may not sell your data to third parties as some free antivirus solutions do, its ability to meet advanced antivirus requirements is in question.
Why do people choose Premium Antivirus Software over Windows Defender?
1. Advanced Security
Compared to free solutions like Windows Defender, paid solutions offer advanced security-enhancing features. Your digital protection is often enhanced by the features and tools that come with paid antivirus solutions. These include a virtual private network (VPN), a full-fledged password manager, features for shredding and encrypting files, parental controls, protection against identity theft, protection for microphones and webcams, and even cloud storage. Premium suites also include advanced ransomware protection and anti-phishing protection.
2. Anti-Ransomware Feature
Ransomware locks and encrypts your data, making it unusable until you pay a ransom. The anti-ransomware feature can find these kinds of threats and stop them from getting to your data. Phishing protection features prevent your personal and financial information from being stolen by untrusted and malicious websites.
3. Multi-Layered Malware Protection
A premium antivirus also offers multi-layered malware protection. Modern malware attacks are so intense that single-layered protection is no longer sufficient. Paid antivirus offer multiple layers of protection in order to provide stronger protection. In this way, even if malware breaches one layer, there will always be another to protect you. In addition, most paid antivirus programs automatically update themselves so that you can stay protected against new malware threats as soon as they arise.
4. System Performance
Moreover, paid suites have a very low impact on system performance. Antivirus programs used to be resource-intensive applications, often making computers run slowly and putting too much stress on them. Many people would rather risk having a virus on their computers than have to deal with antivirus software. Thankfully, premium solutions are now optimized to have minimal impact on the performance of your system; they work efficiently in the background.
5. Multi-Platform Compatibility
Premium programs are also popular due to their multi-platform compatibility. Nowadays, most people own multiple devices, so all your devices may not run on the same operating system. If that’s the case, there is no cause to worry. You don’t have to purchase antivirus software separately for each device. Using a single license, you can protect multiple devices running different platforms like Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. You get complete peace of mind and great value for your money.
6. Customer Support
Last but not least, premium customers get priority support. Most companies give paid users higher priority when it comes to technical support with their antivirus products. In most cases, you will have a variety of support channels available through which to resolve your issues, such as live chat, phone, and email support. If you encounter problems, there is nothing better than knowing you can contact a reliable team of experts.
Drawbacks of Windows Defender
1. No Advanced Protection
In addition to the lack of advanced features, Windows Defender suffers from a number of other issues. For all-round digital protection, Windows Defender only provides a limited number of features. This product lacks a lot of key protection-rated features and utility features. Currently, there are no indications that these features will be added in the near future.
2. Limited Malware Protection
In terms of malware protection, Windows Defender is also somewhat limited. Because the program is primarily designed to target viruses, it often fails to detect and prevent other threats, such as ransomware and browser exploits. The software may protect you from viruses, but it leaves you open to many other types of malware.
3. Effects System Performance
Furthermore, Windows Defender used to perform very poorly when it came to malware protection and system performance. As a result, its malware detection rates were unimpressive, and it had a significant impact on system performance. According to independent tests conducted by trusted organizations like AV-TEST and AV-Comparatives, third-party products like Norton, Bitdefender, McAfee, and Avast performed far better than Windows Defender in this race. Nevertheless, Windows Defender has recently improved, and its performance is now at least comparable to other top antivirus products.
4. Untrusted Protection
Many independent tests carried out recently found that Windows Defender returned more false positives than its competitors. This means that you can’t trust it completely since it can mistakenly detect harmless files as malware. For the antivirus program to recognize that the file is safe, users will need to whitelist it.
All things considered, it’s clear that your best bet when looking for an antivirus suite to protect your computer would be a premium solution.
Which Antivirus you Should Choose?
There are so many antivirus programs on the market today that a new user can quickly feel lost.
Our number one antivirus software is Norton, thanks to its excellent features, flawless anti-malware security, and minimal system performance impact. Moreover, you can choose from a variety of reasonably-priced plans, giving you incredible value for your money. The 360 Deluxe suite is the sweet spot for most people in the Norton lineup. Additionally, the plan offers a whopping 50GB of cloud storage, in addition to features like secure VPNs, dark web monitoring, and password managers.
The Total Security suite from Bitdefender may tickle your fancy. In addition to providing outstanding malware protection, it also offers a number of excellent features. When it comes to features, Norton 360 Deluxe slightly edges Bitdefender Total Security. If you are on a budget, the latter may be the best option. Overall whichever antivirus product you choose, your computer will be safe from malware threats as both are known for their impeccable malware protection.
I’m Jaskaran Singh, a passionate tech enthusiast from Delhi, now based in Ahmedabad. My five-year journey as a tech writer has culminated in my role as the Editor in Chief at TheWorldsBestAndWorst, where I continue to explore and share the myriad facets of technology with my audience. Beyond writing, I also run a YouTube channel, with a community of 50,000 subscribers.