You may have heard the word VPN before. Thus you probably know that VPN is one of the best security tools on the internet. But if you’ve never used a VPN before, you might have a few questions – how well a VPN works at stopping viruses will likely be one of them. The short answer is – like it or not – no.
VPN or Virtual Private Network, is not designed to identify and block malware – that’s the job of antivirus software. But VPN Do you They help protect you from many Internet threats, keep you safe online, and are often included as part of a larger antivirus package. For the uninitiated, here’s a quick rundown of both antivirus software and VPN services and why you should use both.
All about antivirus software
The simplest definition of an antivirus is that it is software that prevents malware from infecting your system. Malware is an umbrella word to describe every threat to your computer. These include viruses, ransomware, phishing schemes, bots, rootkits, and even identity theft.
The best antivirus solutions stop threats in real time. This means that while you are online, your antivirus software recognizes a malicious file and prevents your computer from downloading it. It will also use browser tools, usually as an extension, to block websites that the program knows contain threats to reduce the risk of infection.
There is a basic antivirus program that does not use real-time protection. Usually these are free antivirus programs. Instead, it waits for the file to open before grabbing the threat, placing it in quarantine and cleaning your system. While this is a legitimate way to stop malware, there is some risk of something sneaking in.
The most common threats to defeat antivirus software are zero-day threats. These viruses are so new that they are not included in the lists of malware that antivirus applications use to identify threats. When this happens, most antivirus programs will eventually figure out what’s going on and will bundle it up, quarantine it, and clean your computer.
If the antivirus does not recognize the threat in time, it may infect your computer. In this case, it is best to use a malware removal tool, such as Malwarebytes, to get rid of it.
VPNs and why you need them
VPN acts as a shield while you are online. This prevents trackers from recording your internet usage history including the websites you access, the videos you watch, and the products you buy. Most of this information collected is used to create targeted ads or enhanced user experiences (we call it Biscuit).
The Company often uses Internet logs to remember what you looked at the last time you visited the Site. This information is used to automatically fill certain text fields, or entice you with articles or products similar to your browser history. It’s also a great way for identity thieves to grab personal information.
Using a VPN creates a unique, new online identity every time you log in, so it’s pretty impossible for your online movements to be traced back to you or your computer.
Many countries allow you to access information on websites within this site only if your computer’s IP address is also located in that country. For example, if you’re traveling abroad for work and want to watch the latest episode of your favorite Netflix show, you’ll be prevented from watching it because your laptop will show you outside your normal viewing area, even if you’re on an off-date with your subscription.
A VPN allows you to choose a server in the countries you want to be in to access online content, and it will generate a temporary IP address, so you can access geo-restricted content.
Another important function of a VPN is torrenting, or P2P data transfer. When you send information over the Internet, it is vulnerable to browser and hackers. To make this less likely to happen, the VPN will aggregate the information – known as encryption – before it is sent. This way, if it is intercepted, the criminal will not be able to decipher it.
Benefits of an all-in-one antivirus
Antivirus software is usually offered in tiers. This means that the cheapest solution will usually only stop malware. But as you invest a bit more, you’ll get additional security tools that secure your overall system, protecting you from more potential threats.
It’s not uncommon to find an antivirus that includes a firewall, password manager, secure banking tools, parental controls, and even a VPN. The software that offers all these services in one subscription package is referred to as All in one.
Malwarebytes provides one example of an all-in-one program. Malwarebytes Premium + Privacy VPN combines its own antivirus solution with its own VPN and costs nearly as much as a monthly subscription for a standalone VPN service.
The antivirus side of Malwarebytes uses real-time protection to stop threats, including ransomware. Comes with a firewall and password manager. It also includes Browser Guard that stops scams appearing on the Internet, as well as monitors websites for any potential threats. And if you get infected, you have access to Malwarebytes’ amazing malware removal tools.
Malwarebytes VPN has over 500 servers in 30 countries and will work on Windows and Mac computers, Android and iOS mobile devices. When you click to connect to the VPN, the client will automatically connect you to the nearest fast server, but you have the option to manually choose which server to use.
One of the great features of this VPN is the kill switch. This means that if the connection is lost or severed in some way, the VPN will block access to your information until the VPN connection is re-established.
While both an antivirus and a VPN are important tools, investing in an all-in-one program that includes both is an easy and affordable way to get maximum protection for all of your electronic devices.