Antivirus programs used to be everything that we would need to protect ourselves, but not anymore.
Cyber criminals have taken their ways one step further and they made it harder for Antivirus programs alone to detect malware.
This is the reason Anti-Malware programs exist and that’s what we’ll be looking at today.
Why do we need additional programs for protection?
As mentioned above, cyber criminals have made it harder for Anti-Malware programs to detect malware, but how is that being done?
What do these programs have that Antivirus programs don’t?
The short answer is protection against advanced/sophisticated malware. Let’s look at the difference between classic viruses and sophisticated malware.
When Antivirus programs were first made, the methods that hackers used to hack people and their viruses were pretty well established.
There was little to no difference between each individual virus, Antivirus programs were able to effectively take care of them without any major problems.
Cyber criminals found more sophisticated ways of hacking that could bypass the protection of Antivirus programs such as phishing, scamming, adware, spyware and the ransomware virus. They can do complete data destruction of your hard disk.
Antivirus companies have inserted some of the most dangerous viruses like the ransomware virus into their list.
But, they still struggle to offer full-fledged protection even from that as they already have their hands full with protecting us from the “classic” viruses.
Why not an Antivirus that can take care of both?
Taking care of both the classic viruses and the advanced threats that are lurking out there is almost impossible.
That is because it takes a humongous amount of effort and time just to protect someone from one of these kinds of threats, never mind for both of them.
If you see someone who’s offering both an Antivirus and an Anti-Malware into one, I’d advise you to stay away from him, chances are that he is either lying or he’s ignorant and naive.
The final decision?
It would better if you had one Antivirus and one Anti-Malware instead, each one of them can focus exclusively on their category and because of that, you’ll have the best possible results.
So there you have it, there are threats that an Antivirus will not be able to protect you from, that’s why you need an Anti-Malware to cover that security gap.
But do keep in mind that just like Antivirus programs are unable to protect you from threats that Anti-Malware ones can, Anti-Malware ones can’t protect you from threats that Antivirus programs can too.
If you’re interested in learning more about the differences between Antivirus and Anti-Malware programs, you can do so here.
It’s highly important that you’ll have both of them. With that being said, let’s take a look at these programs already.
MalwareFox is one of the most lightweight security programs I’ve ever seen and the lightest one that I ever had on my PC.
You can choose either the free option and have 2 weeks of trial to decide if the premium version up to your taste, or you can buy the premium version immediately.
Prices differ depending on your country so I’m not going to show you any prices today.
The premium version of MalwareFox promises to offer real-time and ransomware protection, it goes without saying that it can serve as an adware/hijacker removal as it is an all-purpose Anti-Malware.
While I don’t want to mention any prices, I have to mention that MalwareFox was the cheapest Anti-Malware I found compared to how effective and lightweight it was, so if you want to get a paid Anti-Malware MalwareFox earns the upper hand.
One big plus for it is protection from zero-day attacks.
Even if a malware that is not known yet tries to infect you, MalwareFox will analyze its behavior and if it acts in a suspicious way it will immediately put it to quarantine and it will inform you about the situation.
The free version offers pretty much everything that the premium does but without real-time protection, which means no ransomware protection as well.
It will be able to remove a ransomware if it infects you but only after you get infected by it and that would be catastrophic for you, the premium version with real-time protection will detect that a ransomware is trying to infect you and it will prevent it from doing so.
Malwarebytes felt a bit heavier on my slow PC compared to MalwareFox and it was also slightly more expensive while it offered pretty much the same features, but I decided to add this one to my list as it’s the most famous Anti-Malware and probably the most commonly used one too.
As I mentioned before, it offers pretty much the same features that MalwareFox does, that applies to the paid and the free version too.
The free version of Malwarebytes does not offer real-time protection, it will protect you from any malware that infects you, but only after it manages to infect you, unless you get the premium version.
ADW cleaner comes has been recently acquired by the same company that created Malwarebytes.
The difference is that this one is not an all-purpose Anti-Malware. ADW cleaner will focus only on adware and PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs).
It is more lightweight than both Malwarebytes and MalwareFox, but that’s only because it won’t offer the same amount of protection.
This one is free, but it’s only recommended for those of you who are not afraid of other kinds of malware such as the ransomware virus.
If you don’t have any important files on your computer or in general your computer does not take part in your business/personal life, then choosing a simple adware/PUP removal like this one could be a good idea.
HitmanPro is a paid Anti-Malware that comes with 30 days of trial. There is HitmanPro that works without requiring installation and HitmanPro alert which requires installation to work, let’s start with HitmanPro first.
HitmanPro offers zero-day protection by using behavioral analysis, but it doesn’t have real-time protection. A scan is required to detect and remove malware.
HitmanPro alert offers everything that HitmanPro does in addition to real-time protection and along with it, ransomware protection.
As its name suggests, this is an Anti-Spyware program, not an all-purpose Anti-Malware one. It comes with many options to choose from.
There is the free version, the portable, the professional, and the educational/enterprise.
The free version offers the absolute basic detection and removal of threats, nothing much to it.
The portable version can be used from a USB drive or an external storage device in general. It is useful if a PC is infected with a threat which disables the standard version, there are two versions of the portable SuperAntiSpyware.
The technician’s edition and the personal edition. The only difference between them is that the personal edition is for personal usage and it’s free, while the technician’s edition is meant to be used by professionals and it requires a payment.
This offers real-time protection, daily definition updates, scheduled scanning, and priority in technical support.
This version is meant to be used in an environment with multiple computers. If it’s meant to be used for educational purposes or for a non-profit organization, a discount will be made.
It offers one central configuration server that can configure and manage the updates of the application on all of the computers that is installed from one place.
MalwareFox is the winner as it offers the best balance between being lightweight, cheap and effective.
The only possible competitor for it is Malwarebytes which loses the fight as it is slightly more expensive and a bit more resource hungry.