One third of Brits don't trust free softwareFree security software can give enough protection

25 December 2010

PC security

Free security and anti-virus software packages can offer users adequate protection, yet are not trusted by one third of Britons according to a recent Which? Computing survey.

The survey of 1,042 adults in October 2010 also showed that more than half of those surveyed had more faith in paid-for security software suites.

Microsoft Security Essentials and AVG Antivirus

Which? Computing's latest usability test of security software shows that while free programs Microsoft Security Essentials and AVG Antivirus lack some of the bells and whistles of paid-for security software suites, previous performance tests show that they do offer adequate protection from online viruses and some security threats.

Abigail Smith, Which? Computing expert, said: 'These two suites don't tend to fare quite as well as the paid-for suites, but can save users a lot of money. Users of free security software should make sure that they're using a separate firewall. Windows Vista and 7 users have a built-in Windows Firewall. Windows XP users could opt for a Which? Computing recommended free alternative, such as ZoneAlarm Basic Firewall.'

Which?  reviews

Which? is labs-testing the latest security software, with Best Buy security software in the spring. The security software labs results will also reveal of the results of Which?'s long-term performance test.

For more computing reviews and advice:

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  • Laptop and netbook reviews

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