Advertising: Even your free antivirus will push for payment. Pestering popups asking you sign up for their paid version may appear daily. Sometimes, the free options will try to change your home page and your default search engine. Paid options will leave you alone unless they detect a problem.
Effectiveness: You should be able to expect any antivirus to detect malware. A problem with a free antivirus is that it needs to have already recorded a virus in its library to detect it. A good paid antivirus will, more than likely, identify and stop a new virus. Using a more effective method, a paid antivirus looks at suspicious behavior and the source when detecting problems.
Features: Free antivirus options include only the bare minimum. With a paid version, like our Worry Free PC and Virus Free PC, you can expect advanced features like secure web browsing, remote hardware and software monitoring, software updates, windows updates, cleaning and organization. With the Layer 2 Protection Services you also receive a 15% discount on our labor and a No Virus Guarantee.
Support: The free antivirus option is the most popular...because they are free! But, this also means that there is generally no support. If there is a problem with a program you will probably find yourself without protection until the issue can be resolved. Paid antivirus options usually include telephone support. With the Layer 2 Protection Service, we are ready to help, remotely or onsite, with problems ranging from installation to system diagnostics.
Ease of Use: Free antivirus options are usually easy to install and use but you will not be able to choose what it monitors or how it reacts. For example, you may have to disable all protections in order to download a network game. Paid versions are more flexible; switching features on and off as required.
To sum it all up, a free antivirus is fine for very basic protection, those on a budget, or for a very old computer. After all something is always better than nothing. We recommend that you go with a paid antivirus to safeguard you from the newest daily attacks and to make sure that you have genuine protection against viruses and malware. If you do not have virus protection or feel that what you have will not adequately protect you, talk to us about upgrading to one of our Protection Services.