Thursday, December 3, 2009

Free Security Software - A Checklist for Setting Up Your New PC

The explosion of new, inexpensive PCs has resulted in a lot of systems that didn't come with pre-packaged software, or that simply come with a trial antivirus package. Is it possible to build a capable security suite for your new system without spending money?


Antivirus and Anti-Spyware

Get a copy of AVG's free product. It is relatively lightweight, runs well even on netbooks, and it receives good reviews.

Windows Defender is increasingly capable, and is a good second choice to install.

I also continue to recommend SpyBot as a good general purpose anti-spyware tool.

Virus Recovery and Malware Removal

MalwareBytes remains my default recommendation for those who need to recover from a virus infection.

Password Storage

I continue to use Password Safe for most of my password storage needs, but LastPass's online storage system is an excellent option as well. You can find my previous LastPass article here.


Start with Firefox, and if you're comfortable with it, add plugins such as NoScript. Firefox's autoupdate capability as well as the wide variety of security controls available make it a great choice as your default browser.

With these free tools, you'll be well on your way to secure computing - for free!