Antimalware: what is it and what is it for?

An antimalware protects a computer system against malware. Find out everything you need to know about this: definition, operation, benefits …
More and more numerous, always more formidable, malware or malware are a real scourge . Fortunately, there is software called “antimalware”, to detect, prevent and remove malware on a computer system.

Antimalware: what is it?

An antimalware software protects a computer system against infections caused by malware of any kind: viruses, spyware, rootkits, or ransomwmares that circulate more and more …
These software can be installed on a personal computer, on a server or even on a complete computer network. Now some vendors also offer cloud-based antimalware , like McAfee CloudAV.

Antimalware how does it work?

An anti-malware software is based on three different techniques. It performssignature-based detection, behavior-based detection, and sandboxing.

First, signature-based detection. It consists of comparing a piece of suspicious codeto pieces of known malware code. These are listed in a database. If the code is recognized, the malware is identified. This technique only identifies known malware.

The behavior-based detection allows to detect unknown malware. The software detects the malware’s intentions before it can execute them. If the malware performs an abnormal or unauthorized action, it becomes an identified threat. This method relies more and more on machine learning algorithms .

The last technique is sandboxing . A “sandbox” is an isolated computing environment, where unknown applications are run safely. This makes it possible to check the presence of threats. If the malware reveals its malicious intent within the sandbox, the antimalware removes it immediately.

What’s the point ?

Antimalware is not just used to scan files for malware. These programs can also help businesses stop an attack by providing real-time protection against malware installation. For this, it scans all incoming data on the network.

They can also prevent users from visiting known websites to distribute malicious code, or prevent the spread of malware if a device on the network is infected. These programs also make it possible to generate and count the number of infections over a given period, and calculate the time needed to eradicate these infections. Administrators can also use it to understand how a malware has infected a device or network.
The antimalware can also remove a malware once detected . However, if this malware is likely to cause more damage to the computer if removed, the software will quarantine the suspicious files to allow the user to manually delete them.

Antivirus or antimalware: what’s the difference?

Antimalware and antivirus are often confused. However, there are some differences between these two types of products . In the past, antivirus programs helped fight well-known threats. These were Trojan horses, viruses, keyloggers and worms.
For their part, antimalware has appeared to fight against new threats. They also protect infections spread through malvertising or zero-day exploits. Nowadays, however, antivirus and antimalware tend to offer the same features.
An explanatory video produced by Orange details the importance of these programs. In addition, the general public can get a free antimalware from Ccleaner, AdwCleaner, or MalwareBytes.

Free Antimalware: Is It Interesting?

In cybersecurity for individuals, there are free solutions. A free antimalware like AdwCleaner allows you to check from time to time. Thus, the user knows if his machine contains a virus, spyware, malware or any other intrusive applications in his files. However, paid software usually provides the latest database updates. Often more virulent, these software detect software or unsuspected files. Small disadvantage, it should be adjusted because it tends to consider harmless programs like pirated software.
Antilmalwares in free mode like those of Malwarebytes are therefore interesting for temporary analyzes.

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