The Importance Of Frequent Antivirus Software Scans – Is this worse than not having antivirus software? There is no doubt that anti-virus software is outdated. That’s because people who deliberately ignore the importance of this kind of protection will pay more attention to the websites they visit or the things they download. Whereas those with certain AV protection often feel safe and therefore engage in safer online activities.
The problem is that any antivirus software out there only works properly if it has the latest signature update. So, do you tend to ignore your AV update notifications? It doesn’t matter if it’s just a few days or weeks. As long as your protection is out of date, you are in danger… Or your computer is already infected and you don’t know it.
The Importance Of Frequent Antivirus Software Scans
So, our topic today is more important than ever. Maybe until now it hasn’t been answered why you need to update your antivirus. But after this article, you will learn more about the importance of:
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If this interests you, keep reading and you’ll be back to getting practical tips on how to stay well protected!
Maybe you already know that we live in a world where hackers try to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in the devices that connect us all. As practice shows, there is no device connected to the internet that cannot be hacked. There are only devices that hackers have not been able to break into, until now!
Antivirus software is, of course, one of the layers of security available. Ideally, antivirus protection would work by anticipating what hackers – or malicious code – might do and acting proactively to block those attempts.
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However, in our world, no matter what AV you use, what brand, and what features…it just doesn’t work. More specifically, how to fight this wave of cyber threats relates to what has been learned from previous virus attacks.
Relying on previous experience helps us fight traditional malware. Exploits and infections occur constantly and companies developing security software will continually monitor for known signs of malware. After developing code that prevents known malware and viruses from infecting new systems or devices, they release updates.
Even with a zero-day exploit, this is an unprecedented attack… It was only a matter of time for programmers to create updated protection code. While everyone is trying to find ways to prevent its spread, programmers frequently release updates.
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For potential threats that your antivirus doesn’t know how to classify and what to expect? There is “automatic sandbox” technology. A sandbox is a simulated environment where an AV allows suspicious code to be run to see what effect it has, without the possibility of propagating or affecting the device in any way.
So, you should continue to look for the best type of protection available. Protection – meaning new features against known malware – doesn’t just come to you. It is available to end users. However it is the user’s responsibility to download and install it. Whether it’s new malware that’s easy to quarantine or more serious attacks that the IT security world is still battling… you want to be protected from everything. You want every bit of up-to-date information on how to fight everything your antivirus can get.
Antivirus updates instruct your version of antivirus software regarding the latest findings from the security company that developed it first: what new threats were discovered, how these threats behave, how your AV software should recognize them, and what to do about them.
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In summary, antivirus updates teach your antivirus about the latest threats discovered and how to combat them. The more threats are released, the more information IT security companies collect and the more updates your antivirus needs.
Note that smart AV will update more than just the signature file (meaning the database of known threat codes). It will also update its scanning engine, which is responsible for the actual scanning and related activities such as quarantine, cleaning, virus removal.
Although scan engine updates are not as available as signature files, they are very important. If nothing fixes a newly discovered machine vulnerability, it can improve actual functionality, such as increasing scanning speed or reducing the false positive rate.
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At least, some antivirus software can tell you what patches to install to fix the latest vulnerabilities found in your operating system. Especially since OS vulnerabilities are often exploited by viruses, it’s not uncommon for AVs to come with useful features to scan your device for vulnerabilities.
Long story short, the most common antivirus updates are signature file updates. The file contains a list of known viruses, their behavior, and their identification codes (signatures). Antivirus updates will display updates to this list of viruses and bad behavior, to include the latest findings.
One thing you want to take away from this article is this: your current antivirus version only protects you from previously known viruses. If you stop updating, you remain exposed to new viruses and malware spreading across the web. And there are still lots of new viruses being released every day.
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This should be a strong enough reason for you to update your antivirus software. After all, try to draw a parallel between running the latest version of antivirus and going to school every day. As a child, if you missed a day of school, you would often encounter important information. Sometimes, this information will help you pass future exams with flying colors. Sometimes the information can be overwhelming but it could save your life later.
Your antivirus needs to “go to school” every day and learn whatever your “teacher” teaches you. Otherwise, new viruses will come along and you may have to reinstall your operating system just to get rid of them. Or, worse, you might have to pay a ransom to get your data back.
If you keep your antivirus up to date, you’re not only protecting your device and important data! But you also contribute to virus prevention when you receive signature updates. Because often viruses can be removed effectively if all internet users unite to remove them from their devices.
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Since this last thing doesn’t happen, we will be dealing with the same old virus. They spread from one unprotected (or outdated) device to another, taking advantage of our laziness to stop them.
Let’s put it this way. Every day, hundreds of new computer viruses and Trojans are developed. The extent to which they can discover and find improvements for them may not be that great. But the number is large enough for antivirus developers to release new signature files every day. Sometimes, even every day. Or several times a day.
As I said before, the more danger we face, the more updates we make. Just as researchers study new viruses that cause disease and create drugs and antidotes, so do code developers. They work to identify and fight computer viruses every day.
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So, if they find a solution and spread it to the user community, this is the best time for you to use it. There’s no better answer to the question of how often you should update your antivirus protection than: as often as possible. Or often your antivirus provides updates for you.
Because of the importance of keeping your antivirus software up to date, antivirus software developers make it easy for you to enable available updates. With most software versions released after 2000, users have the option to run updates directly from the AV dashboard.
Some people label this option as “Live Updates”, while others prefer to use the term “Check for updates” or the term “Update”. If you see something like this, click it and follow the instructions. Of course, this is what you need to do when you want to check if a new update is available.
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Typically, this is also a way to view the current status of the antivirus software, the current version of the software, the last successful update, as well as the history of previously updated modules.
Depending on your chosen antivirus software and active settings, you may need to check this manually