Choosing a security toolkit with anti-virus, firewall and anti-malware programs is a matter of personal preference, your technical ability and experience, features offered, the amount of resources utilized, how it may affect system performance and what will work best for your system. A particular combination that works well for one person may not work as well for another. There is no universal "one size fits all" solution
that works for everyone. You may need to experiment and find what is most suitable for your needs. Another factor to consider is whether you want to use paid for
products or free alternatives
.No single product is 100% foolproof
and can prevent, detect and remove all threats at any given time. The security community is in a constant state of change as new infections appear. Each vendor has its own definition of what constitutes malware and scanning your computer using different criteria will yield different results. The fact that each program has its own definition files means that some malware may be picked up by one that could be missed by another. Thus, a multi-layered defense using several anti-spyware products (including an effective firewall) to supplement your anti-virus combined
with common sense and safe surfing habits
provides the most complete protection.
As a general rule
, using more than one anti-spyware program like Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware, SuperAntispyware, Spybot S&D, Ad-Aware, etc will not conflict with each other or your anti-virus if using only one of them for real time protection and others as stand-alone scanners. In fact, doing so increases your protection coverage without
causing the same kind of conflicts or affecting the stability of your system that can occur when using more than one anti-virus. The overlap of protection from using different signature databases will aid in detection and removal of more threats when scanning your system for malware. However
, if using all their real-time resident shields
(TeaTimer, Ad-Watch, MBAM Protection Module, Spyware Terminator Shields, etc) together at the same time, there can be conflicts
when each application tries to compete for resources and exclusive rights to perform an action. Additionally, competing tools may even provide redundant alerts which can be annoying and/or confusing.
Keep in mind that you can overkill a system with resource heavy security programs that will slow down performance. Sometimes you just have to experiment to get the right combination for your particular system. SpywareBlaster
is a program that blocks spyware tracking cookies
in Internet Explorer and any browsers that use the Internet Explorer engine, including: AOL web browser, Avant Browser, Slim Browser and Maxthon (formerly MyIE2). It also provides protection for Mozilla Firefox, Netscape, Seamonkey, and Flock. SpywareBlaster restricts the actions of potentially dangerous sites
by adding a list of sites and domains associated with known spyware, advertisers and marketers to the browser's "Restricted Sites Zone" and prevents the installation of ActiveX
-based malware, browser hijackers, dialers, and other potentially unwanted software. How does SpywareBlaster work
? It adds sites to the restricted zones by adding the domain as a subkey under the registry key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains. A dword is then added to that domain named * and given a hex value of 4 to specify that it is part of the Restricted Sites Zone. More specifically, Spywareblaster sets the "killbit" on the CLSID (Class ID)
of known spyware. Every program has a CLSID that is unique to the type of program. Once Spywareblaster enables (writes) those killbits they are "locked in" and any identified spyware cannot be opened. Spywareblaster writes these killbits in and then stays off until you need to re-write them again with an update. Why is all this important
? Some types of malware are known to alter Trusted Zones, Ranges and ProtocolDefaults set for a browser.
SpywareBlaster also provides the ability to keep encrypted backup copies of the Hosts file
so if its altered, you can easily restore a good backup copy. Unlike many other security tools, SpywareBlaster does not
run in the background. Instead it only requires installation and then enabling of all protection. After that you only have to check periodically for database updates using the built-in "Check for Updates" feature and then enable all protection again.
If you are not sure how to use SpywareBlaster, please refer to the How to use SpywareBlaster to protect your computer