Emsisoft may not be as well-known as some of the other giant names in the computer security software business, but the company has in its stables some of the finest security software that will help you keep your Windows computer safe and secure. One among them is Emsisoft Anti-Malware, a security software for Windows, that offers the finest technology in detecting and removing, in real-time, potentially dangerous and damaging malware such as virus, trojans, spyware, keyloggers and other all other types of malware.
In comparison to its earlier versions, Emsisoft Anti-Malware differs in many ways and boasts a number of features and improvements highlighted below.
Emsisoft Anti-Malware features in a nutshell
- Offers protection against virus, rootkits, trojans, spyware, adware, worms, bots, keyloggers and more.
- Includes two scanning engines, the other one being from BitDefender
- Improved first scan engine that runs faster in comparison to earlier versions.
- Totally new second scan engine from BitDefender with moree efficient scans and greater detection rates.
- Significantly less false alerts as they were usually caused by the former second scan engine.
- Includes three guards, the File Guard, Behavior Blocker and Surf Protection.
- New performance settings for experts to configure the CPU use of the scanner.
- Significantly better real-time protection performance. The active guard does not slow down your computer.
- Optimized malware cleaning to be able to restore registry entries that were affected by malware.
Emsisoft Anti-Malware Review
I downloaded the 222MB setup file of Emsisoft Anti-Malware from the official website and installed it. On launching it, it asked me to select the preferred licensing. Did I want a 30-day trial or did I want to enter the license key I had already purchased from Emsisoft?
If you want to try it out for 30 days, select the Trial option. After the trial period you can either choose to buy a full version license or switch to the limited freeware mode. Use it for 30 days free. If you don’t like it, you can always uninstall it – or use it as a second anti-virus scanner on your Windows 8 or Windows 7 computer. The freeware mode still allows you to scan and clean infections, but it doesn’t provide any real-time protection to guard against new infections. If you have purchased the product – you can find the key in your purchase confirmation mail – enter the license key to unlock the full version of the software.
Emsisoft Anti-Malware will then get busy trying to download and install the latest available updates. Updates are offered multiple times a day, by the way.
On completion, the main windows will open. First impression? The UI looks smart, has pleasant colors and is quite intuitive and easy-to-use. On the left side, you will see the menu. The menu offers links to your Security Status, Scan your PC, Quarantine malware, view logs, enable Guard and configure your Emsisoft Anti-Malware.
Security Status tab
It displays the security status for your computer - like whether the software is up-to-date, malware detected and quarantined, and whether the File Guard, Behavior Blocker or Surf Protection is enabled or not. If it is not, you can click on the ‘Settings’ link adjacent to the malware protection features. The link becomes visible once you move the mouse cursor to the end ofscreen.
The link allows you to manually tweak many settings. For instance, you can enable or disable File Guard feature, specify files of certain extension types to be scanned from its window and choose a default action for any of the detected objects.
I decided to check some key features mentioned above such as ‘Behavior Blocker’, which allows detecting harmful actions that are run on your system. You can specify in detail the behavior you would like to allow or block for specific programs. For example, you can allow the program to allow installing services and drivers, change browser settings but block unwanted or harmful activities such as spyware or wormlike activity. Honestly, I found this small link extremely useful as this is what allowed me to fine tune the program and use it as per my convenience. The tool also allows you to choose a Security Mode that meet your security requirements best.
The Security Status tab also allows you to schedule scans on monthly, weekly or daily basis. You can choose a specific run time when the computer is not in usebut free the program to scan viruses and trojans.
If you hit the ‘Scan Now’ button of the Security Status tab, the program performs a ‘Quick Scan’. It scans the system memory and displays results on finishing the scan. At the top left you can see the number of the processes and the scanned files.
Scan PC tab
When you hit this tab you are immediately presented with different types of scan to choose from. These include:
- Quick Scan – Scans for active malware processes only. You can choose this method of scanning if you are an advanced user and planning to scan with more specific scan settings.
- Smart Scan – Scans thoroughly your files, registry, memory and system as whole. If any malware is detected, a Deep Scan should be run.
- Deep Scan – This is the slowest but as the name suggests deepest scan that scans every single file on your hard disk for any malware traces.
- Custom Scan – Allows creating customized scans via manual configuration of settings.
Select the preferred scan method and hit ‘Scan’. As soon as I hit the Quick Scan button, the software started scanning the system memory. At the top left you can see the number of the processes and the scanned files. Fortunately, no suspicious files were found in my case during the scan. That’s probably because I believe my system is virus free.
You can view the reports by clicking on the ‘View Report’ button. The reports are saved in the ‘Reports’ folder of the ‘Documents Library’ by default.
If, by chance, any malware is found on your PC, you can obtain more information about it online and view its description in a new browser window.
The Quarantine provides a safe place for storing suspicious or potentially threat files. Mind well, these files do not pose any threat to your computer, once it is quarantined. If due to a false-positive, a file is accidentally moved to quarantine it can be restored using quarantine ‘Restore’ tab. Its table displays the source path, behavior, infection, etc and provides administrative functions for these files as shown in the screen-shot below.
The ‘Submit file’ button allows a user to send the suspicious file to anti-malware network so the analysts can perform in-depth analysis and add it to the signature database if it’s really a malware of unknown type. On the other hand, ‘Add file’ allows you to manually move suspicious files into quarantine.
The Logs can help you in tracing procedures. The Logs screen has “Behavior Blocker”, “Quarantine” and “Update” tabs. In the Updates tab all the update actions are listed which can be manual or automatic updates. The “View details” button provides more information on each update actions.
The Emsisoft Anti-Malware protection is further subdivided into “Application Rules”, “Behavior Blocker”, “File Guard”, “Surf Protection”. The Guard allows you to easily fine tune or remove behavior rules.
It takes a while to get all the settings tweaked but when you get them right, the software does the rest of the job. In addition, it does not conflict with other antivirus, anti-malware or anti-spyware software installed already on your system.
Some features of Emsisoft Anti-Malware
Emsisoft Anti-Malware 7.0 does provide a great level of protection, generally found in more expensive security suites. One main highlight of the program is that it features two scanning engines, the second of which is provided by BitDefender. The dual-scanner is actually much faster and lighter than most single-engine products. Having two scanning engines in place not only assures a greater chance of detecting any threats, but also reduces the risk of false positives.
The program has also been designed to block suspicious websites. If you enable the ‘Surf Protection’ feature, the Anti-Malware tool protects you against phishing sites as well as addresses that host malicious items. As soon as a fraudulent site is detected, Anti-Malware prevents its loading and emits an alert. This helps you remain safe online.
If it flags off a legitimate programs which you know to be safe, you can create rules for them so that you can continue to use them unhindered.
I found the software to be rather light on resource utilization. While at rest, I found that it required just 600K, the need going up as and when specific tasks are performed.
Is Emsisoft Anti-Malware good at detecting virus?
MRG Effitas a UK-based, independent IT security research organization, organizes an ongoing so-called flash tests series. The purpose is to assess how security applications react to zero day threats. Since June 29th, 18 different security programs had to compete with a total of 120 brand new samples. Only three of them were able to show a clean sheet with a detection rate of 100% – Emsisoft Anti-Malware with the strong combination of a dual-engine signature scan and behavior analysis, came out on the top!
Virus Bulletin runs some of the most respected tests in the Anti-Virus world as a neutral authority. Emsisoft Anti-Malware has once again achieved the VB100 Award.
If you are looking for a reasonably priced antivirus software with a high malware detection rate, low resource utilization and additional built-in security utilities you want to buy Emsisoft Anti-Malware. A one year license costs $39.95. Emsisoft Anti-Malware 7.0 works on Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista and Windows XP, 32-bit and 64-bit. It compatible with almost all other antivirus programs and you will also be able to run it along with any other antivirus present on your computer – including Windows Defender! With Emsisoft Anti-Malware, its like, you get two antivirus software for the cost of one!