Open Source Antivirus Programs – Are They Good?

Antivirus software is important in today’s world. We spend way too much time online and that can lead to problems. People browse the internet but they pay little to no attention to where they are going. They end up on sites that are pretty malicious, even though the browsers and extensions typically warn them not to enter a site. 

Oh, winning a prize sure seems great, but in the end, one wins malicious code which infects their computer and in most cases, just makes it bloated and slow. In the worst case, one gets infected with a ransomware virus and must pay money to get their data back. Antivirus software is important, but people wonder whether there is anything open source? Most antivirus software comes with a free variant, but they are built by companies in this or that country and people assume that these companies have an agenda (like a backdoor into one’s system).

Open Source Antivirus Software – Are There Any?

When talking about open-source antivirus software, one typically needs it for Windows.

Linux and Mac computers download software from secure servers and do not need an antivirus unless one intentionally visits shady sites and ends up downloading and running malicious code.

Windows is a bit more difficult for regular users, because of the way it executes applications. The famous exe extension makes it easy for malicious code to be executed. The only thing the user needs to do is click yes and give administrative rights to an application while entering a password is typical for every installation on Linux and Mac computers.

There is an open-source antivirus called ClamAV and is available for Windows, Linux, and Mac users. This is the go-to choice if one wants an antivirus tool to help them monitor and keep their system safe. The application is good and should be considered if one needs antivirus software.

Should You Download Antivirus Software?

This is where things get a bit more complicated. If using common sense and browsing the internet in a regular fashion, one does not need antivirus software, not even on Windows. Windows Defender does a job on its own and it does it well. Provided that one does not visit extremely shady sites, antivirus software is unnecessary. 

Linux and Mac computers are pretty safe, provided that one does not download from unknown repositories. On Linux, one can simply install or uninstall necessary libraries and destroy their desktop environment. This is why installing from official repositories is recommended for beginners.

There is an open-source antivirus software and it is called ClamAV and it should be considered if one needs additional protection. Windows has the Defender while Macs and Linux systems are much safer by default.