Some great security apps are still free

Some great security apps are still free

Summary: In this image gallery, I've put together a list of 10 free utilities you should already be using to help protect, disinfect and manage your Windows computer.

TOPICS: Security

Some great security apps are still freeLast week, I wrote dismissively about Symantec adding a $29.99 a year price tag on its new Norton AntiBot technology, calling it a bit of a con job to sell all these different security tools to protect users against malware.

Well, it turns out that there are some great FREE security apps available for Windows users -- from privacy-related file shredders to anti-phishing and anti-virus utilities.

In this image gallery, I've put together a list of 10 free utilities you should already be using to help protect, disinfect and manage your Windows computer. My favorite in the list: The PC Decrapifier, a program that does justice to its name.

Topic: Security

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  • Thanks, I actually learned of a few new ones!

    But what about 'ol faithful Spybot, Spyware Blaster, Adware, and AVG? TIA.
  • Doesn't your college call all of that stuff Crapware? <- George Ou
  • There's a lot of freeware out there,

    some good, some not so good, and some positively dangerous ! In choosing an antivirus programme, I have uses the daily stats from [b]Shadowserver[/b] ( I have noted that the German [b]Avira Antivir[/b] always seems to be among the top three or four, and is the only such purveyor to offer a free product [b]Avira Antivir Personal Edition Classic[/b], which is automatically updated regularly (a manual update can be performed at any time), and which now includes an antirootkit application (I also use [b]AVG[/b]'s). My computer house - or at least the more dangerously exposed [b]Windows[/b] apartments in it - has been safe from tigers since downloading this software, and I suggest it deserves a mention among the top ten here. In any event, I'd be interested in [b]Ryan[/b]'s take on [b]Shadowserver[/b] as an objective source for rating anti-virus programmes....

  • secunia

    I downloaded the beta as you suggested and 6 hours later it is still scanning my PC. It remained on 79% for several hours and I finally got disgusted and removed it. I sure hope other users have better luck with it.
    • Secunia Worked well for me

      I spent an hour or two playing with it yesterday. Worked reasonably well for me.

      First of all, remember that it is still in early beta, so there are things that still need work.

      I liked that the scan found apps that I wasn't aware of (not malware, just old downloads) when I looked at the all installed apps list (not just the default that highlighted known old versions). For example, it pointed out the ancient version of Firefox I had installed under TOR (I was able to update it) and the older versions of .NET Framework i had floating around.

      It appears there is a similar "feature" in the version I used. It indicates "PCI status" as "Please wait" even after it finishes the scan and displays the list of apps it found. And I did have an issue with how it refreshed the list after I thought I had fixed (updated or uninstalled).

      Since it is a beta test, I send in a long list of suggestions.

      It is a tool, how you use or abuse it is up to you.

      Note: in case it escapes your attention, the online version (compared to the download version) only scans for a very short list of apps, so use the download version.
  • Am I the only one who's having trouble with File Shredder?

    First of all, this program has some shell integration, so when you right-click an item, you're given three choices for File Shredder: securely delete whatever you right-clicked, queue whatever you right-clicked in a list of things to securely delete, or open File Shredder. The only one of those that seems to work for me is the one that opens File Shredder. How useful.

    In addition, When I actually got to securely delete some files by opening File Shredder and then adding files through the application (as opposed to the right-clicking), it seems that even the strongest algorithm couldn't completely destroy the files. Pandora Recovery was able to recover the files every time. For a supposed secure file deleter program, that's not too good.