PC Tools Internet Security

Could Be The Best Provided It Enhances Its Protection Against Traditional Malware

The PC Tools Internet Security got a good marketing and a separate development platform through the acquisition of security vendor by Symantec, also dealing in the marketing & development of Norton Internet Security Suite. PC Tools is great for heuristic malware detection but not so for the traditional malware detection. Its price is $60 for three users (1 year) as of 21st May 2009.

PC tool has its own version of antivirus protection and it gained almost 100% scores in on-demand as well as on-access detection in the AV-Test.org for 2735 sample malware, including scripts and macro viruses. But the setback of PC Tools is that it failed to detect two variations of Conficker worm in both on-demand and on-access scanning. It also performed poorly in detecting zoo Trojan horses, password-stealers, worms and other malware by detecting only 58% of the total of 722,372 samples. This performance placed it only above the bottom-ranked Commodo.

PC Tools performed the best in case of behavior-based detection of malware and warned 93% of times, identified & blocked 87% of malware and erased 80% of them. It also removed all of the nine rootkits with ease.

PC Tools slows down the Windows XP machine considerably and it is found by the AV-Test for by making it scan long files, like on-demand scanning of a 741 MB file took 173 sec, while on-access scanning took 66 sec.

For the detection of unknown malware, PC Tools is not a good choice, as it detected only 29% and 23% of the malware samples with 2-week old signature files and 4-week old signature files respectively. Although, the signature updates of PC Tools is the lowest of all (on an average 1.1/day), it responded fairly quickly (6-8 hrs.) against the threat of new widespread malware.

The interface of PC tools is quite user friendly and is good for an average user with no complex features at all. But it sometimes feels very insufficient. When it comes to the documentation, it has nothing other than the nominal Quick Start guide and hence, not a good candidate for creating firewall rules.

PC Tools makes use of heuristic analysis for the identification of phising sites instead of using the list provided by aniphising sites. For this purpose, it has a toolbar called Browser Defender that works for Internet Explorer. This toolbar is found to be good for the phising sites, older than 2 hrs, but misses a few that are less than 2 hours old. The company of PC Tools said to the PC World that several phising sites don’t remain live for more that 24 hours rendering the blacklisting method out of fashion.

It doesn’t have parental control or backup features and become the first security suite to be produced by its company. If it includes some better security against the traditional malware then it can also become a success just like Commodo. But, for now Norton Internet Security 2009 is still the better choice.

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