How Does Antivirus Work?

Owing to the continuous evolution of viruses, antiviruses are constantly being updated to provide optimum security for its users.

The first thing an antivirus software will do is to scan the computer programs, searching for malwares or any symptom suggesting the presence of an infection. Although an antivirus can immediately detect the presence of a virus, a full scan is sometimes required especially when the antivirus has just been set-up or when the computer has just been fixed.

The following are ways in which an antivirus performs:

Specific detection or signature-based detection: This is the most common method used and it works by looking out for certain traits/characteristics of known malware which upon detection are deleted or quarantined. This method is really not advantageous in the event of new threats whose pattern has not been afore identified.

Heuristic detection: This method is capable of identifying malwares yet to be discovered, or previously existing ones which were modified. But care must be taken as this method is capable of generating false positive results thus wrongly judging the status of a file.

Machine learning: This method is based on artificial intelligence and allows the software to investigate the code of application and make judgment based on its knowledge of malwares. It is thus able to decide if a software poses any form of threat or not.

Sandbox detection: This method creates an emulated environment for the program to run and its behaviour is studied. The antivirus will then alert the user based on the resultwhether or not the software is a malware.

So irrespective of the choice of antivirus been used, there is an assurance of protection to keep all files safe.

How to choose the best Antiviruses?

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