Antivirus Software Advantages and Limitations
If not already, cybersecurity should be at the forefront of your mind.
Without thinking and applying cybersecurity measures, your business is at great risk. Everything you’ve worked for in your business? A hacker can take that away within a minute.
But, if you utilise the right cybersecurity solutions, you can ensure that hackers don’t get the chance to steal from your business. You’ll have already covered 90% of the bases.
However, it is not easy to do this.
To learn how to secure your business, you need to know antivirus software advantages, edge defence advantages, and the limitations of them both. Only then can you make the right decisions about your cybersecurity and how you can protect your business.
Without the proper cybersecurity solutions, you can wave goodbye to your business within the next 5 years.
Edge Defence Advantages
Protecting against external threats before they reach the network
One key advantage of edge defence is its ability to identify and thwart external threats before they can infiltrate the network.
By implementing security protocols and technologies at the edge, such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems (IDS), and secure gateways, organizations can prevent unauthorized access attempts and malicious activities from ever reaching their internal network infrastructure.
This proactive approach ensures that potential threats are intercepted and blocked at the network perimeter, minimizing the risk of compromising sensitive data or compromising network resources.
Filtering and blocking malicious traffic at the edge
Edge defence solutions enable the filtering and blocking of malicious traffic at the network edge.
By scrutinizing incoming and outgoing network packets, edge devices can detect and analyze potential threats, such as malware, viruses, or suspicious traffic patterns. Through advanced traffic filtering mechanisms edge defence solutions can selectively allow legitimate traffic while blocking or redirecting malicious traffic.
This filtering capability helps to mitigate the risk of attacks, such as distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, by diverting or limiting the impact of malicious traffic at the edge.
Localized processing and data caching at the edge
Edge defence brings processing and data caching closer to the network edge, resulting in reduced latency and improved performance.
By decentralizing certain computational tasks and storing frequently accessed data at edge devices or servers, organizations can minimize the time it takes for requests to travel back and forth between the user and a centralized data centre.
This localized processing and caching capability improves response times and enhances user experience, especially for latency-sensitive applications and services.
Minimizing round-trip time and network congestion
With localized processing and data caching, edge devices can handle certain tasks and deliver content directly to end-users without relying on distant data centers. This reduces the number of hops and network distance, which in turn decreases the round-trip time for data transfer.
By processing and delivering data at the network edge, edge defence helps optimize network resources, minimize congestion, and ensure faster and more efficient data transmission.
Distributed architecture for handling increasing workloads
Edge defence solutions leverage a distributed architecture that enables efficient handling of increasing workloads. By deploying edge devices and servers at multiple locations, organizations can distribute the processing and data storage load across the network.
This scalability ensures that as the workload grows, the network can handle it effectively without straining centralized resources. Additionally, edge devices can be added or removed as needed, allowing organizations to scale their infrastructure to match the demands of their applications or services.
Reducing bandwidth and infrastructure costs
Edge defence helps reduce bandwidth and infrastructure costs by optimizing data delivery and minimizing the need for excessive network traffic.
By caching frequently accessed content or utilizing content delivery networks (CDNs) at the edge, organizations can reduce the amount of data that needs to traverse the network from centralized servers to end-users. This reduces bandwidth consumption and lowers the costs associated with high-bandwidth requirements.
Moreover, edge defence eliminates the need for establishing and maintaining extensive network infrastructure in centralized locations, leading to cost savings in terms of hardware, maintenance, and operational expenses.
Antivirus Software Advantages
There’s a reason that antivirus has been on the cybersecurity market for so long: it does work and it does help.
Antivirus software may be just the beginning of the cybersecurity software you need to use, but it antivirus software still has its advantages.
Some of the antivirus software advantages are:
Continuous Monitoring for Malware and Viruses
When it comes to your cybersecurity threats, there are no days off. In fact, there are no hours off. In fact, there are no minutes off!
Your cybersecurity solutions need to be running 24/7 (even if your staff aren’t!).
Malicious actors come from all across the world, and they will not wait for Monday – Friday 9 to 5 to make sure you are working. They’ll hack your business whenever they feel comfortable.
So you need 24/7 protection. And antivirus software is a great start.
Antivirus software gives off continuous monitoring for malware and viruses through real-time scanning, behavioural analysis, automatic updates, heuristic analysis, and real-time alerts and notifications, ensuring proactive detection and immediate response to potential threats.
Using antivirus software for continuous monitoring could save your business just in time.
Instant Alerts and Notifications About Potential Threats
Could you imagine what continuous monitoring would look like without any alerts?!
It would be like having a guard dog who doesn’t bark when an intruder comes into the house – even though that was what they trained for…
With instant alerts and notifications, you’re able to detect and respond to malicious activity before the full extent of the cyberattack has taken place. One of the best defences your business can have against a cyberattack is a good response.
Detecting and Removing Existing Malware and Viruses
Having a good response time is just one of the great things about antivirus.
When performing a system scan, antivirus software meticulously examines files, applications, and system areas to identify any traces of known malware or suspicious activities. By comparing the scanned elements against an extensive database of virus signatures and behavioural patterns, the software can swiftly detect and flag any infected files or malicious code.
What’s really good about antivirus software is that you don’t have to respond to every piece of malware that comes your way – your antivirus will detect and remove malware and viruses for you.
Although, your antivirus does not remove all malware. Sometimes malware can be undetected by your antivirus if it is well written. But, we’ll talk about this more later…
Quarantining and Deleting Infected Files
Typically, before an antivirus is removed, it will be quarantined.
When a file is identified as infected or suspicious, the antivirus program will isolate it in a secure quarantine area, separate from the rest of the system. By doing this, the antivirus software prevents the malware or virus from causing further harm/ spreading the infection.
In some cases, the antivirus software can automatically attempt to repair the infected files to remove the malicious code. However, if the file cannot be repaired, or if it poses a significant threat, the antivirus program will delete it permanently – without the need for human intervention.
Identifying and Blocking Suspicious Websites and Emails
Your antivirus doesn’t just stop at files though.
Your antivirus is also crucial in the fight against malware/ viruses on emails and suspicious websites.
Antivirus programs utilize advanced algorithms and threat intelligence to analyze website URLs, email headers, and content for potential signs of malicious intent. They cross-reference this information with their extensive databases of known phishing indicators to quickly identify suspicious websites and emails.
By identifying and blocking suspicious websites and emails, antivirus makes your business less vulnerable to malware and viruses.
Preventing Users From Falling Victim To Phishing Scams
In addition to blocking suspicious websites and emails, antivirus software plays a vital role in preventing users from falling victim to phishing scams.
It achieves this through various means, including:
- Displaying warning messages when users attempt to visit known phishing websites
- Providing visual cues or indicators to identify potentially dangerous emails
- Offering educational resources or guidance on safe online practices.
By actively alerting and educating users about potential phishing threats, antivirus software helps raise awareness and empowers your employees to make informed decisions when working online.
And as employees are the biggest risk to your business, this is a very big antivirus software advantage!
Antivirus Software Advantages and Edge Defence
The advantages offered by antivirus software, such as identifying and blocking suspicious websites and emails, and preventing users from falling victim to phishing scams, are closely related to the concept of edge defence.
Edge defence focuses on enhancing security at the network edge, where external threats attempt to breach the network perimeter. By integrating antivirus software into an edge defence strategy, organizations can fortify their network security measures.
However, there are limitations to both Edge Defence and Antivirus Software on your business that you need to be careful of.
The Limitations Of Edge Defence and Antivirus Software
For years, cybersecurity has relied on protective edge devices like firewalls, IDS and IPS systems, and anti-virus software, but these solutions are growing insufficient. What role do these edge devices play and how do they fall short of the needs of companies that store individuals’ personal information?
The Functions of Edge Devices and Antivirus Software
Edge defences are used by companies differently as there are many types of Edge Defences that are able to protect every business differently.
For example, firewalls are known to block and filter out certain traffic coming in from outside sources on the internet whilst after that, IDS (Intrusion Detection System) devices are used to inspect and detect anything that looks suspicious.
Then, once an IDS finds a threat, an alert should be sent to your IT department/ whoever is supposed to get the alert. However, IPS (Intrusion Prevention System) devices function just like IDSs, but they also try to proactively stop malicious attacks.
Antivirus software is also supposed to help detect, identify, and remove malware in this case as well.
Evolution of Cyberattacks
While this is just an example of what these devices are there to do, these defensive measures are outdated in terms of cybersecurity.
Hackers are smart. They have found new ways to penetrate networks without getting tangled in edge defences. Their new tactics typically involve: email phishing, creating websites that are used to confuse the user, hacking insecure gaming sites/ games, and hacking video-streaming websites that kids play on.
However, this is just the tip of the iceberg that hackers use to bypass edge defences. And if you think an antivirus program will detect this internal attack, think again.
When someone is tricked into allowing access to malware through things such as a dangerous email, using an unsafe USB, going to the wrong website or something else, the malware can do just about anything.
The expertise that typically goes into malware today makes malware so encrypted that it is pretty much invisible to firewalls ad IDS/ IPS systems.
And unfortunately, the vast majority of antivirus programs no longer can stop malware or detect malware it as it has gotten so sophisticated. Both antivirus software and edge defence products are not able to keep up with today’s malware.
To give you an example of today’s threat landscape, the VP of Information Security at Symantec (an antivirus software company), said “Antivirus now lets through around 55% of attacks.”
That must mean a lot if the VP of a software company can admit that over half of malware bypasses its systems…
And just remember that once malware bypasses these edge devices through these other internal passages, it can then gain control of your network, extract data, monitor and hide any other activity, destroy your data, remove your access, or grant itself authorized access to anything.
Sometimes, this leads to ransom attacks. And these ransoms can go into their millions…
Instead of relying on simple antivirus software and edge defence devices to combat these threats, you need the service of a cybersecurity company that can give you full coverage through something like SIEM solutions or endpoint protection.
Antivirus software advantages are great in theory, but you need more than that to protect your business nowadays…
If you need help setting up full-coverage cybersecurity solutions, reach out to us here at Jera.
As cyberattacks continue to evolve each day and edge defences are growing insufficient, you need to find better ways to keep your business protected.
By turning to Jera for full-cover cybersecurity solutions, you’ll receive a final product and service that provides you with customizable security that will detect, notify, and isolate external and internal attacks alike with care.
To make sure you never have to worry about the loss of profits through a ransom, or the loss of reputation, contact us today.