The 5 Best Malware Removal Tools
Computers are now part of our daily lives. You have computers in your pocket, your office, even your TV, and refrigerators might be computer operated if you bought the Smart ones. And with so much information being passed around in the cyberspace, it gives rise to a new kind of crime – cybercrime. Cybercriminals range from simple email spoofers to phishers, to the full-blown hackers. The end goal here in the mind of these people is to get your information for their own benefit or for the benefit of others; be it your credit card information, your banking information, or your personal information, these hackers have thought of various ways to get it.
One of the ways that hackers can get your personal information is through malware. Malware is short for malicious software and is an umbrella term to describe computer viruses, Trojan horses, and worms – basically anything harmful to both the computer and anything that can compromise your information, that’s malware. To get into the specifics, malware basically runs code in the background that gathers your information, either by logging your keystrokes or by finding critical files in your computer and sends it to an outside source.
But how does malware get installed in the first place? There are many forms of entry for these malicious programs. Malware can get installed by being on the same network as an infected computer, by installing untrusted software, by opening a fraudulent email, or by going to suspicious websites. What makes things worse is that you won’t be able to detect that you’re infected with malware without special software. But it’s not impossible to detect and remove malware by yourself; you just need to know what to look for. If you don’t know what to look for, we got you covered.
We’ve done our research and we looked for the best malware removal tools in the market right now. Let’s jump right in.
1. Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware
Malwarebytes’ is top dog on our list for a reason: it works and it works splendidly. It’s updated daily and can easily remove those pesky malware infections that you might have. With this app, you can set your preferences to avoid any false positives – that is, the program mistakes a legitimate file as malware.
Though the premium version is paid – a measly pay barrier of $25, you’ll still be provided a 14-day free trial when you first download this tool. During this time, you’ll be able to experience real-time monitoring (no need to hit scan every time you suspect a virus), among other things. After the trial elapses, you’ll revert back to the free version.
It’s definitely a noteworthy tool in the market, just don’t let that price get to you – you’ll definitely get the most bang for your buck. You can download Malwarebytes’ Anti Malware by clicking this link.
2. Spybot Search and Destroy
Spybot is another excellent way to protect your data. Though it has free and paid versions, the free version has all of the essentials you need to keep your computer protected, though we’ll go over the paid versions as well.
As the name implies, Spybot basically scans your computer and once a threat has been found, you’ll be given a lot of options to treat the infection. You can quarantine it – that is, you’ll limit the functionality of the file so it doesn’t go rogue on you, or you can delete it entirely. This is the main operating principle of all versions of Spybot.
The free version can remove both Malware and Spyware, which is good enough for some users. But if you’re looking for all-out protection, you can go for the Home version or the more expensive Pro version. The Home version gives you access to an Anti-virus suite aside from the essentials for $15.99 while the Pro version gives you the ability to create a Boot CD for backup purposes. The Pro version is at $27.99 which is competitive in this space.
You can download Spybot by Safer Networking by clicking on this link.
Don’t let that screenshot fool you. ComboFix might look like an old DOS program but it has the functionality and the prowess to keep up with all the other tools on this list. What ComboFix does is it scans your registry (basically a list of all things installed on your computer), goes through a 40+ stage process and lets you know which files are red flags and which ones you should remove.
In short, ComboFix is very simple to use and doesn’t need the flashy UI to be useful. After it’s done scanning your computer, it will provide you with a detailed report that you can post at the community forums, which is by the way, always up to date and filled with helpful posters. ComboFix is more for the advanced tech savvy kind of user than the let it run and leave it kind of user. If that’s up your alley then this tool is definitely worth a download.
But the best part of ComboFix is it’s free! Get in on the action and download it at Bleeping Computer by clicking here.
4. Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition
You might have noticed that we’ve been shying away from the big corporate products while making this list. And you’re right if you thought that way. The reason behind this is that though the likes of Norton, AVG, McAfee, and Avast can definitely get things done in a heartbeat, they usually have a very large price of entry – sometimes costing hundreds of dollars. These big products might also have a paid subscription that is definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, especially if you’ll just use it once.
But we didn’t keep that mindset when we added Bitdefender to our list. With the Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition, you have a robust platform to defend against all kinds of threats that might be thrown at your computer. If you have a Windows computer, this antivirus will run faster on it as it’s optimized to run on Windows. Other benefits that it has are the Intelligent Antivirus, Advanced Threat Defense, Safe Browsing and Anti-Phishing & Anti-Fraud features.
The Intelligent Antivirus basically monitors your computer in real time and acts on any suspicious files that it identifies. You’ll still be given the full suite of quarantine, deletion, and trust features but it’s great that there’s no price wall to cross in getting this feature. The Advanced Threat Defense, on the other hand, uses AI or artificial intelligence to detect whether a suspiciously acting program is a virus or it’s just a false alarm. Say goodbye to all those false positives while you’re just downloading trusted files over the internet.
Though you get all of the essentials, some of the other features like Password Managers, Firewalls, and Anti-theft features are locked behind yearly subscriptions. You can get the 1-year subscription for $19.99 for 1 device or you can pay a little more extra to get protection for up to 5 devices.
I would absolutely say that this Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is a bang for your buck, but technically I can’t say that because it’s free! You can download this awesome tool at the Bitdefender website by clicking here.
5. Emsisoft Emergency Kit
One of the caveats of downloading most of the tools on this list is that they are heavy. What I mean by heavy is that they take up a lot of your computer storage space. Ranging from half a gigabyte to a full gigabyte or more of memory, they’re not tools that you can afford to have on your computer if you have a filled up hard drive. Emsisoft Emergency Kit is an innovative malware protection tool that solves this problem.
Emsisoft Emergency Kit doesn’t need installation. You can just run it off one of your USB flash drives and it will work amazingly well and be able to scan for any imminent threats on your computer. Its file size is a measly 300 MB when we tried downloading it ourselves. It’s definitely something that you would want with you in case of any emergencies or if you’re traveling. Just pop it in and run it. It’s as simple as that.
You can download the very lightweight Emsisoft Emergency kit for Free and put it on your USB flash drive right now by clicking on this link.
And there you have it. These are our picks for the best malware removal tools. Whether you’re anxious to know if you have a virus or you really know that you’re infected, just install these programs and you’ve already got your first line of defense! It definitely helps you sleep easy at night knowing that your information is safe and secure.
Hacking and cybercrime are not going to stop anytime soon, so it’s best that we know how to guard and protect ourselves. Hopefully, you found this list helpful!