Anti-Malware Apps Can Restore Post-Infection Computers

Finally some good news, this time from Tech Republic.  Recently an independent security lab, AV-Test, put seventeen popular anti-malware applications through their paces, specifically looking for how well the applications could detect and remove malware on systems that were already infected.  Anti-malware applications also prevent malware from installing through signature based and behavioral detection, but this test focused on whether the apps would work on a computer where malware had already been installed. 

The testers used 30 malware families, and spread the testing out over ten months in order to test the applications’ ability to pick up variants of the original malware samples.  This is important because cyber-criminals are always improving and modifying their malware tools not only to make them better, but also to create new strains that are undetected by signature based anti-malware engines.

The tested products included many of the free anti-malware products including MS Security Essentials, Avira, Avast, and AVG free.  For a complete list and detailed results I recommend you click through to the original article.

The test procedure focused on repair performance and not detection ability, and tested the applications in two ways.  First the applications were installed to a clean PC and then infected with malware and tested for removal success.  Then the computers were first infected with malware, and then the application was installed and repairs were attempted.

So let’s skip ahead and focus on results.  The only application to detect and remove 100% of the malware samples was Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free.  Security Essentials and Avira both scored highly, missing only one of the samples.  One of my personal favorites, SUPER Antispyware, was not included in the test.  I use both SUPER and Malwarebytes when removing malware in my shop, and SUPER Antispyware is a lot faster than anything else I have used.

So if you are determined to use only best of breed products, it looks like adding Malwarebytes to your computer would be a plus.  If you install the anti-malware only, and not the one that includes an anti-virus component, you should be able to run both Malwarebytes and what ever other security product you have installed.



About the Author:

I am a cybersecurity and IT instructor, cybersecurity analyst, pen-tester, trainer, and speaker. I am an owner of the WyzCo Group Inc. In addition to consulting on security products and services, I also conduct security audits, compliance audits, vulnerability assessments and penetration tests. I also teach Cybersecurity Awareness Training classes. I work as an information technology and cybersecurity instructor for several training and certification organizations. I have worked in corporate, military, government, and workforce development training environments I am a frequent speaker at professional conferences such as the Minnesota Bloggers Conference, Secure360 Security Conference in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, the (ISC)2 World Congress 2016, and the ISSA International Conference 2017, and many local community organizations, including Chambers of Commerce, SCORE, and several school districts. I have been blogging on cybersecurity since 2006 at

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