Most PC and laptop owners want to keep their digital data safe and sound – in the modern world losing this information means losing a part of one’s personal identity. In fact, figures from a survey conducted for Kaspersky Lab by O+K research in May 2012 confirm just how important security is. According to the survey, 95% of desktop computers and 92% of laptop worldwide are protected from malware and other threats in one way or another. The question is how effective these security solutions are– and therein lies the problem. According to the survey, 69% of users did not pay for the antivirus software installed on their computers.
Of course there are plenty of free antivirus solutions on the market today – however all of them have rather limited functionality. Commercial solutions, meanwhile, offer a very different set of choices – the developers are focused on comprehensive products which include a fire wall, anti-spam and anti-phishing filters and other tools over and above basic anti-malware protection. It is precisely these modules, which are seldom seen in free solutions, which provide real security during common user activities – visiting web sites, communicating on social networking sites and performing online financial operations.
Interestingly, 22% of respondents believe that the existence of free antivirus software is the result of the developer’s social responsibility, i.e. the vendors care about those users who for personal or financial reasons cannot pay for the antivirus protection. 31% of the surveyed believe that free software is kind of platform that developers use to promote their top-level commercial products.
During the survey the O+K Research specialists also tried to determine how often the respondents used preinstalled protection software. It turned out that 60% of surveyed got a trial version of an anti-virus program along with their computer or laptop. 13% of them continued using the preinstalled solution after the trial period was over while 30% of the users eventually switched to another solution. Interestingly, 2% of respondents took no steps after the trial period was over and left their computers unprotected.
The cost of the most effective security solutions, such as Kaspersky Internet Security 2013, is relatively small. In addition, commercial software developers offer a number of money-saving deals. Paid-for solutions surpass their free counterparts both in quality (which is confirmed by independent tests) and functionality. The ever-increasing number of threats makes it necessary to provide reliable multilevel protection to the user’s most important data, and that requires the use of complex technologies such as Kaspersky Lab’s Safe Money system, developed to protect online payments.
The full version of the O+K Research report is available at http://www.kaspersky.com/downloads/pdf/kaspersky-lab_ok-consumer-survey-report_eng_final.pdf