What is anti virus and what is anti malware

Crickettwilight

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May 10, 2014
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I really know nothing about stuff like this and I really need your help.
I was thinking about getting bitdefender antivirus plus, is it good ? Or is there something better?
I want some thing that can detect all the nasties (virus, malware, and more) and remove them.
Also what is difference between antivirus software and what is anti malware software?
And does antivirus software scan and REMOVE viruses? or do they only scan and prevent viruses?
 

techgeek

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Agreed, once infected it can be very difficult to completely remove malware / virus. Once the virus / malware has your system, it owns it and usually has higher system / OS privileges than the user does. They often intentionally interfere with the antivirus software and OS to keep themselves from being detected and or removed. In fact some malware goes so far as to protect your (their) system from being infected by other malware, so it has exclusive access to your system.

I will often waste a few hours attempting to remove a virus / malware from a computer, because I am naturally inquisitive and like learning something. Once it gets beyond the three hour mark, if I haven't made any headway, it's time to nuke it from orbit.
 

techgeek

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Actually the lines have blurred when it comes to defining malware and viruses. In the past viruses were trogans, and viruses. Where malware encompassed everything else, keyloggers, adware, etc. Now most antivirus software looks for malware, and most anti-malware software looks for viruses.

For instance I use AVG Free (lot's of people don't like it, that's OK, I've had pretty decent luck with it), it scans for both. However I also use the free version of MalwareBytes. The free version doesn't allow for realtime scanning which is good since having more than one realtime virus / malware scanner running at a time can cause all sorts of issues. I use MalwareBytes like once a month regularly to do a manual scan of my system, or anytime I think something may have gotten past my antivirus. When it comes to protecting your system, one solution doesn't necessarily catch everything.
 

PsyKhiqZero

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People used to distinguish between viruses and adware. Viruses being things you got in emails and shady files while adware being programs that caused things like pop-ups or browswer hijacks. But nowadays they both just get lumped together as malware. Malware programs are good at detecting and preventing infections, but no have a harder time removing them. IMO once you get an infection it's time to reformat.
 

techgeek

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Agreed, once infected it can be very difficult to completely remove malware / virus. Once the virus / malware has your system, it owns it and usually has higher system / OS privileges than the user does. They often intentionally interfere with the antivirus software and OS to keep themselves from being detected and or removed. In fact some malware goes so far as to protect your (their) system from being infected by other malware, so it has exclusive access to your system.

I will often waste a few hours attempting to remove a virus / malware from a computer, because I am naturally inquisitive and like learning something. Once it gets beyond the three hour mark, if I haven't made any headway, it's time to nuke it from orbit.
 
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