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Why cant I just use Windows Defender as my Anti-Virus?

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A common question and a valid one. You’re not paying for it technically, as its bundled in with your Windows license fee, and it says it protects you. It checks all your boxes, but does it actually address all areas of risk when it comes to malware?

Malware is everywhere these days. It seems like online interactions are now akin to taking a vacation within a jungle… requiring numerous vaccinations and preparations before setting foot in the vicinity. Unfortunately, anti-virus protection isn’t a simple game. If it was, every vendor would be doing the same thing and have the same results when it comes to protection.

Alas, statistics show that some vendors are more productive than others. Some are more intensive on your machine during their renowned “scan times”. This is often followed by swift, mild, percussive whacks around the monitor (of which had nothing to do with your machine slowing down!).

A general setup that well all know by now is the firewall on the permiter and anti-virus on the machine. However as soon as your laptop users remove themselves from the office, that firewall isn’t protecting them anymore.

Another common statement….

“I have a firewall in place… the AV is redundant as a result”

This is entirely wrong. Its akin to saying my front door is locked therefore I can leave my cash on the dinner table in open view. Security should have an onion approach. Numerous layers thatll make people cry if they have to keep peeling through them. Put several layers between you and the attacker and you’ve effectively made it that much more difficult for them to interact with the machine or asset.

So when your laptop users leave the office… what risks are they exposed to? Lets list a few of them:

  1. There is no firewall protecting them (except the Windows default one which is probably not configured)
  2. They are able to connect to public hotspots and risk putting themselves in environments with malicious users.
  3. Your users passwords are then at risk of being uncovered using a variety of attacks (See “man in the middle explained”)
  4. The users laptop gets stolen. It’s a trivial task to get into a Windows laptop with local access.
  5. Since the laptop is mobile, its likely to suffer knocks, which then lead to it essentially dying on you.

This is just 5 separate risks and none of them involved the user clicking on a spam item (which is in fact the most popular way to infect yourself).

So what we really need isn’t “Anti-Virus” we need “Endpoint Protection”. Endpoint protection encompasses:List

  • Host based firewalls
  • Malicious applications
  • Email protection
  • Man in the Middle prevention

To get a truly effective risk management strategy in place send us an email or give us a call (+44 1223 850 800) and see what we can do for you!

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