The Best Ransomware Protection for 2021

Everybody wants to protect their computers from viruses, especially malicious ones that can hinder your computer’s speed or, worse, expose credit card information! 

Keeping that in mind, you may be doing a lot of research into what type of ransomware can infect your system and what kinds of protection will provide the best defense available in this day and age. 

Ransomware is a two-stage assault, if you will, the first part will lock you out of your files, and the second part will corrupt them or damage them if you fail to pay the “ransom” in time. Knowing this, let’s dive in and find out what kind of protection you can get from these invasive attacks.

We have done a lot of research on which protection systems work the best and keep those viruses and ransomware at bay.

The best ransomware protection is as follows:

1. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus

2. Kaspersky Free

3. Webroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus

4. ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware

5. Malwarebytes

6. AVG AntiVirus Free

7. NeuShield Data Sentinel

This article will provide a detail-oriented analysis of all of this antivirus software down below. If you wish to protect yourself to the fullest, we strongly advise you to continue reading below! 

What Is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a malicious malware that utilizes an encryption-based attack to hold the victim’s information ransom. 

Suppose you were to fall for a ransomware attack. In that case, your computer might potentially lock you out of Google or any number of programs and repeatedly ask you for your credit card information to have you unlock your programs and regain access to your computer. 

Sadly enough, ransomware doesn’t just target personal computers. The applications of this kind of hijacking can extend far into the corporate world, holding the entire organization’s information hostage ranging from their databases, files, and even applications. 

The game is then in the companies hands, as the ransomware developer sits patiently, awaiting a “negotiation” of sorts to get the entire operation running again. 

It’s easy to see why getting any variant of ransomware can be catastrophic. If quick action isn’t taken, it can cause the entire company to go under, or on a more personal level, drain your bank account. Unfortunately enough, the attack isn’t limited to the initial computer infected with the malware. 

These special attacks pride themselves on compromising entire networks once they have found their way in and will almost instantaneously debilitate a business or whole house of computers.

The Best Ransomware To Protect You

Now that we have a baseline understanding of what ransomware is, diving into how to defend yourself from it and which antivirus software will best keep you and your network safe will be the next step into avoiding this tragedy befalling you and your business.

Below we will find a list of different antivirus software to utilize in the fight for digital information. Some of these may be free or have a “free” version. 

Still, it is worth noting that the upgraded versions or ones that do require some form of payment will offer a myriad of unique benefits. 

These benefits range from real-time protection (which will actively scan your computer from threats while using it) to setting up particular interactions when visiting any site you are unfamiliar with. They will also deny those connections if they are viewed as “invasive.”

1. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus

Thus enters Bitdefender, a solid start to a list of giants that will stop at nothing to eradicate all cyber threats to you and your network. 

Bitdefender has a great list of benefits. Some of these advantages range from having multiple levels of protection ranging from your traditional phishing attempts to ransomware protection, web protection settings that you can personally modify to your specifications, and an innate knack for tackling pesky malware in general. 

As a side note, Bitdefender has a free version you can use before deciding whether or not you want to leap into the paid version!

2. Kaspersky Free

As the name would suggest, this line of defense is the accessible version of Kaspersky antivirus, and among them, it functions the best without taking a hit to your wallet. In some more rigorous testing, among which antivirus did the best job, Kaspersky stood tall and proud as the most consistently precise and effective free antivirus program to date. 

Toting a feather-like that in its cap, investing in getting the full version will gain you access to a more intensive form of protection against ransomware, as well as VPN options for those looking to obscure their data even more.

3. Webroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus

While most other names on this list are pretty commonly known in the antivirus world, Webroot may be less heard of but is worth mentioning purely for what it brings to the table. 

This form of protection will give you the expected real-time protection, ransomware defenses, and a constantly updating database for “rooting” out any other kinds of malware that might crop up over time. Still, Webroot has an ace up its sleeve.

Webroot offers a specialized defense for your e-commerce investments and even bank protections, taking the form of password management options and identity theft monitoring if suspicious charges are made.

4. ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware

Here we have a form of protection that is geared directly at ransomware, hence the name. ZoneAlarm excels at shielding against ransomware and immediately restoring any damaged files in the process, but this direct specification comes at a few costs. 

The first of them is it will slow down your computer a bit. The protection it offers utilizes a heft amount of resources, and as such, will directly impact your computer’s speed by association. 

The issues don’t stop there though, ZoneAlarm, great as it is, also doesn’t have a free version, and for the price, you would pay for it, you can find better alternatives on the market, so unless you only need ransomware protection, it’s advised to dig a bit deeper.

5. Malwarebytes

Now we have a giant entering the arena, Malwarebytes established in 2008, has become quite the talking point for generalized cybersecurity. It has both a free and a premium version, but the free version is where it truly distinguishes itself. 

The Malwarebytes free version utilizes all of the current expectations listed above and combines them with a few select choices only offered by other programs’ paid versions. Real-time protection, constant virus definition updates, and multiple layers of defense against the ever-growing threat of cyber invasion make Malwarebytes a strong choice.

The premium version boasts an even more elaborate array of protection from everything like trojans, spyware, bots, worms, rootkits, and the list goes on. It’s a truly worthy investment for both businesses and recreational computer users alike.

6. AVG AntiVirus Free

If AVG was a giant for how long it’s been around, that makes AVG a cosmic force of nature. AVG was established in 1991 and had been doing cybersecurity for just as long. 

This software has got everything you would expect from an in-depth line of defense against anything that would look to compromise your systems and more. 

Not only does it have the power of time on its side (which is a massive accolade in the field of technology), but it also has the opportunity to increase what it already offers directly in the form of the premium service.

Unlike some of its other competitors, AVG’s premium service is typically only around $30. Considering you gain the benefits of protection from ransomware and every other threat under the sun, it should come naturally as a contender for one of them, the best forms of security available. 

One final tidbit of information about the AVG Antivirus (both free and premium) would be the minimal amount of resources it utilizes to protect your computer. 

As we mentioned above, the more advanced software that would stand between you and those with ill-intent can make your computer function slower. AVG does not suffer from this and can be customized to utilize even fewer resources.

7. NeuShield Data Sentinel

NeuShield is another targeted kind of protection that is explicitly geared for ransomware and offers exclusive services in data recovery, as its name would suggest. 

Neushield’s primary difference between others is the fact that it makes use of its Mirror Shielding technology so that you can immediately gain access to any damaged, or corrupted files, without any of the expected downtimes a traditional data breach might incur. 

As with some of the other programs, NeuShield also offers a free and premium service by default, but with the amount of specification behind targeting ransomware directly. 

The premium service is worth the investment if you just wanted to protect your information and ward off ransomware attacks. 

On a side note, NeuShield’s primary focus is recovering your lost data. As such, you would want to combine it with another form of protection to guarantee that you are protected from the initial ransomware attack, but if it does succeed, your data is undamaged.

What Are Other Ways To Protect Myself From Ransomware?

The biggest cybersecurity concern is the question of what your personal choices are and how diligently you weigh the pros and cons of going to a site you are unfamiliar with or clicking strange links.

In this margin of choice, we enter the realm of user error or attacks on your system caused entirely by mistakes made by your own hand. While some forms of a cyberattack can occur indirectly or unprovoked, it almost always boils down to a decision or action taken by the user that compromises the security systems in place.

Because of this understanding, we have to realize there isn’t software available on the market now, nor will there ever be, one that protects you from 100% of all security attacks. 

These are all things you must be considerate of to give yourself a fighting chance against ransomware attacks.

  • Scanning links sent to you by your existing antivirus software
  • Asking yourself how reputable the person sending the link is
  • Verifying if it is indeed a business you are familiar with

How Do I Know If I’m At Risk Of Ransomware?

Anyone is innately at risk of ransomware. Nevertheless, how much effort you put into protecting yourself from it, your diligence displayed in keeping yourself from making poor choices, and going to untrustworthy sites will make all the difference in the world as to whether or not you fall prey to one of these attacks.

Suppose you have antivirus protection, or specifically ransomware protection, as well as data recovery options available by any of the leading companies offering these services. In that case, you are much less at risk, but there is always plausibility to an attack occurring if you open yourself up to one.

Who Gets Affected By Ransomware?

The most common victim of ransomware is those who are uneducated of the threat it poses or simply isn’t very knowledgeable about computers, or cybersecurity by association. 

You can’t defend yourself if you do not know the danger exists, and to that extent, people who aren’t in the know are at the most risk. 

While unfortunate, at times, these kinds of people are always going to be around. While most of them may be more isolated and individualized, they may be people in your home or company, which causes an issue for everyone else in the location. 

That being said, you can do your part to reduce the risk of this happening to your business or family. The way you do so is by setting time aside to educate everyone around you about the possible threat and giving them a crash course on how to protect themselves and what can happen if you do not.

Can Ransomeware Be Stopped?

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Unfortunately, just as quickly as advances in technology happen, ransomware will always be able to adapt and change with the times and become more intricate and complicated to lockdown by the same train of thought.

The other side of this coin is that user error accounts for a vast majority of ransomware attacks. So, as long as people do not have a common understanding of how these attacks can occur, someone will always fall victim to them, meaning the cycle simply will not end.

If you want to have the highest possible chance of not being infected with ransomware, educate yourself and those around you of the threats a malware attack can have on your home or business. 

You will want to put defenses in place to serve as a median between you and all those that would wish to profit off your mistake.

Can You Recover From Ransomware?

Assuming you’ve taken the necessary precautions to protect your data in the first place, you can technically recover any corrupted or locked files without having any harm done to your systems or business. 

This is somewhat a catch 22 in itself, though. Not everyone who protects themselves from ransomware will have data protection as well. 

Suppose the security system fails, and you don’t have the data recovery systems in place. In that case, your data may be damaged or corrupted beyond repair, so preparation for any scenario is the deciding factor here.

We briefly touched base on it above but just for clarification, just because a form of cybersecurity advertises it will protect you from ransomware. However, that does not mean it will protect your data. Read through services offered in detail to inform yourself what is, and more importantly, isn’t provided.

Final Thoughts

The fight for cybersecurity will not ever end. The FBI estimates this year alone that over 1 billion dollars USD will be stolen due to ransomware scams, and the number will only increase over time. 

As our world becomes more entwined with digital overlay and a continual embrace of more intricate forms of technology, the more likely you are to be hit by a cyber attack will become.

As we’ve said before, you are the only real factor in whether or not you will fall victim to ransomware or any other kind of malware attack, for that matter. 

Take your time, research diligently, and always go the extra mile to put a few extra hoops for a would-be attacker to jump through. If you make it easy on them, you’ll pay far more than a simple subscription price to an antivirus company, which means that little investment now can have huge payoffs later.

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