There is far more to antivirus software than just opening box, inserting CD and installing software. To be properly protected you may actually want to do a little more than that.
You see, a good antivirus program does a lot more than you might think. In this article we will be discussing features of Norton Antivirus 2002, one of best and most full featured programs available. Similar functions exist in other major scanners.
The first thing you must do in this day and age is purchase and install antivirus software. If you don't have this installed you are literally living on borrowed time.
Some of common features are described below.
Perhaps most important feature of all is auto protect. This feature allows antivirus system to perform it's tasks without manual intervention. This is critical as then you can relax and do what you need to do, without constantly worrying about checking for viruses. Keep this turned on without fail.
Checking for email viruses
This is one of most critical features of a modern antivirus program is ability to scan email messages as they arrive or are sent. Scanning of this nature is relatively new and long overdue.
DO NOT TURN THIS FEATURE OFF.
It's very important to remember that most destructive viruses arriveas attachments in email messages. I know, I know, you would never, ever open anything that even remotely looked like a virus, would you? But how would you know? Do you want to take chance on destroying your system?
Scanning disks for viruses
Most virus scanners will occasionally scan your disks for anything that looks like a virus. In Norton Antivirus, you can schedule this scan for as often as you like - in fact, many people turn it off entirely. After all, while scan is running your system will be slower than normal. It can be quite annoying.
Turning off automatic disks scans is, however, a big mistake. These check your disks for any viruses which may have gotten through front line defenses. How does this happen? You could copy a virus to your hard drive from a CD ROM, a floppy or perhaps across network. It will be just sitting there, waiting to explode in your face. Scanning disks finds these little time bombs and eliminates them.