Is an antivirus necessary for my Windows 10 PC?

Unlike in the past, when Windows had a standalone antivirus called Microsoft Security Essentials, the operating system now has a built-in antivirus called Windows Defender. You do not need to install antivirus software on a Windows 10 PC. However, does the built-in Windows Defender offer your machine full protection?

How effective is Microsoft’s Windows Defender?

If you’re using Windows 10, your PC already has active antivirus software. This integrated antivirus software will download updated definitions from Windows Update, check the apps you’re about to launch, and offer a user interface for doing a full scan. It does not have pop-ups, takes very little space, and does not monitor your browser activity. However, antivirus testing shows that Microsoft’s antivirus software performs poorly in comparison to its competitors. According to How to Geek, Windows Defender earned a 3.5-star rating in comparison testing. However, real-world security testing revealed that it successfully neutralized threats up to 94.5 percent of the time, which is better than nearly all other alternatives.

Bottom line

Do you need antivirus protection for your Windows 10 computer? The answer is dependent on how you use your computer and if you follow industry-standard security procedures. According to Windows Central, following sound computer security practices when using your Windows 10 PC can aid Windows Defender in protecting your PC.

Assuming that Windows is kept up-to-date, that you avoid potentially hazardous plugins, and that you use an updated browser, Windows Defender may provide significant protection, depending on your risk tolerance. However, it is not as effective as antivirus software installed on your computer. This is especially important if you download pirated applications or participate in hazardous online activities frequently. Regular internet usage necessitates the installation of antivirus software capable of combating the increasing number of online dangers.

When the Security Center detects the installation of another infection in Windows 10, the Defender immediately shuts down. Windows Defender will only stay active if you do not have any additional protection. Windows Defender was created to guarantee that everyone’s PC is protected in some way. Modern antivirus systems’ networked structure enables a kind of herd immunity against new threats. That is, when others in your immediate vicinity have protection, you are safer even if you do not. That is not to say you should rely on it; individual immunity is far greater than herd immunity.

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