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avast! Professional Edition PDF Print E-mail

avast! Professional Editionavast! Professional Edition is a complete ICSA certified antivirus package for your company.

All-inclusive, comprehensive protection: avast! Professional Edition includes anti-spyware protection, certified by the West Coast Labs Checkmark process, to protect against the latest spyware threats and anti-rootkit detection based on the best-in class GMER technology, built into the scan engine.

Keeping your computer safe is a top priority, and with Avast Pro Antivirus your bases will be covered for the most part. While this may not be our top-ranked antivirus software, you will see that this application has a lot to offer. It comes with reputation-based link scanning, a virtual desktop and automatic sandbox browsing. We would have liked to see more when it comes to antiphising, but overall this product is reliable and will get the job done.

Usability : 8.5/10

Simple to use and fully automated: Automatic incremental updates provide real-time protection of your system, including web surfing. We've made avast! antivirus as simple to use as possible, while allowing full control of your computer's security. With over 80 million users of avast!, you can rest assured that you are using one of the most tried and trusted antivirus products in Windows security. avast! supports more MS Windows versions than any other anti-malware product.

Antivirus Protection : 8/10

The first thing to look for is the scope of the protection offered. It comes with built-in spyware protection as well as protection against Trojans and rootkits. It also scans incoming emails to ensure any messages you open are bug free. Some of the other tools include help locating and removing the threats. We would have liked to have an antiphishing option with all of these.

There are two features in particular that are outstanding, the auto sandbox and the code emulator. The sandbox is where you can run your browser in a controlled environment so the application can check up on a few files to see how they are acting. This is also where you test out applications that come from unreliable sources. The code emulator is another way to test out risky files before risking your computer.

The final advantage we want to cover is the fact that Avast is continually updating. This is important because new viruses and malware are being continually developed. If your antivirus software doesn't update then you run the risk of having your computer infected by the latest virus running rampant on the web. You can choose to have the application update automatically or you can run updates yourself.

While we like all that Avast Pro Antivirus has to offer, it doesn't do it all. We really liked that it covers the basics with the protection against spyware, Trojans and rootkits. It also reliably blocks attacks via email. It would have been even better had it included antiphishing. The other feature that this application brings to the table is the ability to test software in a closed, controlled environment.

avast! Professional Edition

Phishing Protection : 6/10

During the install process, avast! adds a security plug-in to your browsers. Among other things, this plug-in serves to steer you away from fraudulent sites that attempt to steal your security credentials. In addition, the Web Shield blocks access to some fraudulent sites, labeling them with names like "Phishing-Q" and "BankFraud-N".

Despite this double-barreled antiphishing approach, avast! scored poorly in my real-world antiphishing test. Its detection rate was 32 percentage points below Norton's. Very few products do as well or better than Norton in this test.

avast! Professional Edition

Bonus Tools : 7/10

The Browser Cleanup tool isn't designed to wipe your browsing history clean. Rather, it scans all your browsers for toolbars and other add-ons that "have a poor reputation." If you wish, you can set it to also show safe add-ons.

A Rescue Disk can be a lifesaver if ransomware somehow gets past your antivirus, or if malware makes your system unbootable. Before anything like that happens, be prepared. Use the Rescue Disk tool to create a bootable rescue CD or USB.

Without you ever lifting a finger, avast! works in the background to make sure your browsers and other important applications are fully patched with all the latest security updates. It will notify you if it finds any that need update. In most cases clicking the Update button will take you to the update online.

If you click the "Activate automatic updates" button, you'll find it doesn't. Rather, you'll get an offer for an upgrade to avast!'s Premier suite. The AccessAnywhere tool is also a Premier feature, and the SecureLine VPN requires a separate purchase.

Wondering what avast! has done for you lately? The Statistics page will show data for your system as well as a wide collection of global statistics drawn from avast!'s millions of users. In addition, the Component Status page reports useful info like how many items are in the Virus Chest, how many outdated programs were detected, and whether Browser Cleanup found any problems.

avast! Professional Edition

Conclusion

I'm pleased with avast!'s user interface makeover, and the independent labs give it good marks overall. Checking for unpatched programs is a nice feature, and avast! offers a variety of options to defeat entrenched malware. On the other hand, I'm not pleased with the too-aggressive heuristic detection that quarantined two perfectly valid utilities, and it didn't earn a top score in my malware-cleanup test.

The nice thing about free antivirus solutions is that you can easily try out different ones before making a choice. If you like avast!, go ahead and join the other 200 million who use it.

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