What is Cloud Antivirus and should you use it?
We need antivirus solutions to protect our computers. And, to keep up with the latest emerging threats, antivirus programs have evolved to offer a wide range of features.
Real-time protection and ransomware defenses are some of the most valuable features of a modern antivirus solution. Besides all the offers you need to install on your computer, there are also cloud antivirus products.
Cloud antivirus products use the internet connection to keep your computer safe. But what is cloud antivirus? Should you use it for your computer? Here’s everything you need to know.
What is Cloud Antivirus?
A cloud antivirus works the same way and offers all the relevant features you find on a full suite of security tools installed on your computer.
However, cloud antivirus relies on a cloud server to process/scan for malware or suspicious behavior. You still need to install it on your system just like a traditional antivirus solution. But only a few components of the antivirus tool reside on your computer, not all of them.
A cloud-based antivirus aims to minimize your system’s workload and does all the heavy lifting on a cloud server, which is why you need internet connectivity when using such a tool.
In addition to the minimal impact on your system resources, other benefits include:
- Avoid slowdowns on your computer.
- Get up-to-date threat information quickly from the cloud.
- Advanced features powered by artificial intelligence, machine learning, and more.
How does Cloud Antivirus work?
You should install the antivirus program as usual. The only difference is that the installation will be minimal, taking the least amount of storage space.
In other words, you install the user side of the program, where you can change specific options and access cloud antivirus.
Compared to a traditional installation, fewer virus definitions reside on your computer. The majority of the threat database lives in the cloud. Thus, you can save storage space on your system.
With this type of setup, the intensive scans required for processing on your computer are nearly eliminated, freeing up your system resources. So you can easily use the cloud antivirus without worrying too much about the performance impact while you work or play.
Therefore, cloud antivirus should work fine even on older computers.
Can you use Cloud Antivirus on your personal computer?
Yes of course you can. However, cloud antivirus is a handy offering for companies and businesses where it’s difficult to install antivirus programs on every system while ensuring it’s regularly updated.
With a cloud antivirus, you get a wide range of features that make it easier to use in the workplace. Some of them include:
- A dashboard to manage all device installations
- Rapid deployment and digitization
- Real-time monitoring and alerts
- Detailed reports on how systems are protected
- Remote computer support
- Easy third-party integrations
Individuals can also use cloud antivirus solutions on personal computers. You can effectively find the viruses that are hiding from you.
However, there are not many antivirus programs that offer cloud-based protection for home/personal use. Luckily, we’re listing a few here as you read.
For personal use, you can expect some of the following features, including:
- Network monitor
- Tracking Alerts
- Website filters
- Screen time control
- Hardware Status Check
5 Best Cloud Antivirus Products
Although there are several cloud-based antivirus programs for businesses, we focus more on personal users and include a few options for businesses.
Note that the list is not in any particular ranking order.
1. Kaspersky Cloud Security
Kaspersky Security Cloud is designed for individual use. It lets you monitor your devices and online accounts and enforces parental controls and other essential features.
The Security Cloud subscription is a little more expensive compared to its traditional offer. But, if you want something with the most negligible software footprint and something easy to manage, Kaspersky Security Cloud should be a fantastic option.
2. Webroot SecureAnywhere
Webroot is one of the first cloud-based antivirus solutions available for personal use. It offers all the necessary features to protect against adware, spyware, keyloggers, etc.
It is popular for its lightning-fast scans, backed by cloud-based technology. Webroot offers affordable and flexible pricing plans for various requirements.
3. Bitdefender Total Security
Bitdefender is a solid antivirus protection option where you get both the benefits of a robust antivirus tool on your system and its cloud-based scanning technology.
You get all the essential features and cloud network access with its Total Security edition. However, you can explore more of its offerings as per your requirement.
4. Avast Business Center
Avast Business Hub is an impressive platform for businesses to easily secure their computers and manage them seamlessly from one place.
You get detailed reports, a dashboard, alerts, remote control, and the ability to execute commands in real time.
5. Malwarebytes Nebula
Malwarebytes Nebula is an enterprise-focused solution with powerful cloud-based capabilities to detect and eliminate threats.
You get a range of robust security features that should help you quickly deploy and manage the cloud antivirus solution.
The disadvantages of cloud-based antivirus
Like any cloud-based solution, it also has some drawbacks. Some of them include:
- An always-on Internet connection to take advantage of scanning and cloud-based features.
- Personalization options remain limited, as the cloud takes care of everything without you having to do anything.
- Cloud-based scanning introduces potential privacy situations. What information is collected, transmitted to the cloud, and how it is protected are all matters of concern.
- The cloud server may experience downtime which could affect the ability to actively protect your computer.
- While cloud antivirus aims to improve performance, it could have potential slowdowns due to server or network issues.
So, keep these points in mind before spending your hard-earned money on a cloud antivirus solution.
Is cloud antivirus the future? Should you use it?
Cloud antivirus offers essential benefits that minimize the impact of a security solution on your computer. With a cloud antivirus product, you can do more things quickly. Whether it’s a professional or individual use case, a product that can save you time and system resources is always welcome.
However, it would be better to consider the pros and cons before choosing a cloud antivirus product. It is best suited for businesses and may not be suitable for all individual settings. If you’re convinced that inconvenience isn’t an issue, cloud antivirus should be perfect for your use case.
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