Security Corner

Oct 7 2009   1:59AM GMT

Microsoft Security Essentials is a Game Changer

Ken Harthun Ken Harthun Profile: Ken Harthun

Microsoft’s Security Essentials (MSE), released last week amidst criticism from antivirus giant Symantec, is proving to be effective, robust protection against current malware threats. Performance analysis by shows that MSE is on par with many other standalone antivirus products.

Using Windows XP as a testbed, AV-Test pitted MSE against 545,000 current computer worms, viruses, backdoors, bots and Trojan horses; MSE detected more than 98 percent. It detected just over 90 percent of adware and spyware samples and excelled at detecting and removing rootkits.

My experience with MSE so far mirrors the company’s claims that the program “…runs quietly and efficiently in the background so that you are free to use your Windows-based PC the way you want—without interruptions or long computer wait times.”

Any way you look at it, MSE is a game changer. While it’s currently only available as a downloadable add-on to Windows, I doubt it will be long before it comes bundled with the OS on new PCs. When that happens, the AV giants are going to find themselves hard pressed to come up with legitimate reasons for someone to purchase their products.

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