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Of all the available tons of anti-malware software for Windows all over the internet, I've never used any paid solution(I am a student, I have no money). Since the last 10 years, my computers running Windows have never been hacked/compromised or infected so badly that I had to reformat them(of course I did reformat them for other reasons). The only program I have for security is Avast Home Edition, which is free, installed on my computers. It has never caused any problems; always detected malware, updated automatically, has an option to sandbox programs and everything else I need. Even if I got infected, I just did a boot-time scan with it, downloaded and ran Malwarebytes, scanned Autoruns logs, checked running processes with Process Explorer and did some other things and made sure I cleaned my computer. I am quite experienced and I've always taken basic precautions like not clicking suspicious executables, not going to sites which are suspicious according to WOT, and all that blah.

But recently I've been doing more and more online transactions and since its 2012 now, I'm doubtful whether I need more security or not.

Have I been just lucky, or do my computing habits obviate the need to use any more(or paid) security software?

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closed as not constructive by Mokubai, Tom Wijsman, Dave M, slhck, techie007 Apr 15 '12 at 19:17

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what version of Windows??!? –  Ben Voigt Apr 15 '12 at 17:16
    
By the way, when I tried WOT recently, it appeared to be more about political blacklisting and less about actual computer security or privacy breaches. So I stopped using it. –  Ben Voigt Apr 15 '12 at 17:30
    
Windows 7. And yeah I don't totally rely on WOT –  Max Apr 15 '12 at 17:47
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1 Answer

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I think you should always have an antimalware solution, regardless of the OS you run. Of course computing habits play a big role in the risk you take, but you shouldn't only rely on those.

Also, there are some very good free antimalware programs out there. I am also a student, and my university is in the MSDNAA program, so that means I can get Windows for free. Having a genuine Windows 7, I can install Microsoft's Security Essentials and have free antivirus protection (that's the one I'm currently using).

Also, there are other good free antivirus software out there: AVG, you mentioned Avast, Avira, and I'm sure there are many more.

My point is you should always use antivirus software, just in case, for an extra layer of protection. You shouldn't rely on your computing habits, or on the operating system you use (just look at the rampage that the Flashback malware is making on Macs, because people think Macs don't get viruses and don't use antimalware solutions). Having antimalware installed is easier nowaday, since there are many free solutions available.

It also helps very much if you keep your operating system, web browser, and the applications you use up-to-date. There are a lot of vulnerabilities in old versions of applications that can expose you to risk.

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