We often find our friends and clients asking, "Why does my computer get viruses if I have an up to date version of anti-virus software?"
A couple days ago I received a call from a client asking for help because she had a window open up (on its own) that looked like a windows anti-virus screen but it wouldn't close. She mentioned that it showed some virus infections and had a "Remove all" and an "Ignore" button at the bottom similar to the picture below.
She told me she clicked the button in the top right and it didn't close so she called. I told her it was most likely a virus to which she responded, "Why does my computer get viruses if I have an up to date version of (insert anti-virus software here)?"
Before we get to the "why", allow me detour for a second to point out a couple clues that this was a virus. First, the window opened on its own. Computers are user action based tools. Meaning you have to tell it what to do, it can't act on its own. (Although some of us think they have minds of their own.) The second sign was that she attempted to close the window with no response. Hitting the "X" button at the top or "Ignore" on the bottom did nothing to minimize or close the window leaving her desktop and everything she was working on inaccessible.
The Why: Why doesn't anti-virus software work 100% of the time?
The why is a pretty clear and simple explanation. The quick and straightforward answer is anti-virus software is a reactive solution to virus infections. Anti-virus software companies update virus definitions as new viruses are created and released by looking at how a virus works and how it may have been distributed to create a solution to recognize and block that virus.
Maybe you're thinking, "Why isn't it a proactive solution?"
Although they are trying, as of now it is virtually impossible for an anti-virus software company to be proactive. That requires them to predict and solve an infinite number of future viruses similar to a health care professional trying to predict every future disease and symptom to provide a cure in advance.
Although anti-virus software isn't 100% it does protect you from the millions of known viruses silently trying to infect your computer.
We offer an Anti-virus solution to our Managed Service Clients. Our Anti-virus solution is typically more cost efficient than retail "box" Anti-virus, billed monthly saving upfront costs, and provides the flexibility to add or subtract individual licenses on a monthly basis. This saves you the headache of managing individual license expirations and the expense of overpaying for unused licenses.
If you're computer is infected with a virus and you're on our Managed Service Plan we will clean up the computer at no extra cost as long as your Anti-virus software is valid and current.
Please feel free to call our office if you have any questions about viruses, Anti-virus, or our Managed Service maintenance plan.