Here at AVG we know that many users select security software that their friends recommend or by the reputation of the company providing the solution. The average user would trust some of the brands that have lower scores just by their brand alone but there are many independent tests and reviews that will then validate your choice and make you feel confident that the product you are running is protecting you.
AV-test is an independent testing organization that many people look to for validation that their security product and its testing of PC based antivirus products is well respected. Its results are interesting if you look at how well popular brands actually perform.
For example, users might tell you that they accept Microsoft’s antivirus product does a good job for them as Microsoft could be considered as providing a decent level of protection due to the reputation of the company. The AV-Test results published this week tell a different story, giving Microsoft a protection score of 0.5 out of 6. The industry average in this test is 4.3 for the 26 products tested. The detection rate of the Microsoft product comes in at 84% in July and 71% in August for real world testing, whereas the industry average was 92% and 90% respectively.
Where does AVG stand in the results? Well, we score 5.0 out of 6.0 and have a score for real world testing of 98% and 98%, and at that level, it’s like a Formula 1 score sheet where vendors are scoring fractions of numbers to gain ranking in the test.
When it comes to big brands having low scores, it concerns me that users may be running products that are installed by default, for example, in an new installation of Windows or even a product pre-installed on a new machine, without understanding fully which products give the best protection. It is of course great that Microsoft promote the use of anti-virus software in the OS and that awareness of the need to have it is placed in the users mind. The perception of the user is that they are secure and it’s an easy decision just to run with what was already installed in the expectation that it will work fine.
I wonder though if the user would like to be alerted to the level of protection they are being provided so that they can make an informed choice and potentially switch to something else?
Educate your friends and family that reputation alone is not enough and that they need to select products based on the level of protection they really deliver.