PCMag blogger agrees with Symantec on paid security

I found a nice tidbit article over at PCmag.com from their Security Watch blog where Larry Seltzer argues that free anti-virus products just can’t do the job as their paid counterparts do. Read the full article here.

Larry based the post off of Symantec’s recent comment regarding free anti-virus products; something our local hero Melih had something to say about (read here). It would seem Larry agrees with Symantec in that all the distinguished free vendors use their anti-virus software as up-selling mechanisms to their more comprehensive products meaning said products are deficient. Larry also points out that free anti-virus software is incapable because typically they don’t update as frequently as paid items.

WHAT? Comodo does all the above said without any deficiencies amongst CIS Pro and CIS free. The updates are very frequent and the CIS suite is more than capable. With HIPS Defense +, award winning Firewall, Buffer Overflow, and anti-virus protection that is always evolving into a better more secure product I scoff at articles such as this. Hell, no one ever even mentions the gold mine that is the Comodo forums/member base.

The only thing I see Larry, Symantec, and myself all agreeing upon with anti-virus software is that “… none of them are good enough.” Symantec points out that the anti-virus portion of layered security should be the last line you would want activated simply because it means you are already infected and I agree; prevention should be your first line of defense! I do not agree at all however that the amount of money you pay for security dictates the quality of protection you receive (see Devenroy’s 23+ page thread on Comodo detected the malware which is missed by…).

The fact is we all agree on layered security as a must in today’s connected world. Comodo is kind and gracious enough to give us exactly the tools we need to keep us safe at no charge. Comprehensive layered security is the key to keeping ourselves safe online and isn’t dependant on the quantity of money charged to its users as a measurement of quality. Meh to them! They can look at my Comodo embossed fanny as I sail secure and safe with Comodo on my side.

Edit by EricJH: fixed the url to the article

His last paragraph:
My common sense tells me that protection provided by the elite pay products is better than that provided by the free products. The reason there are free products, and why there will continue to be free products, is not that they’re as good as the pay products, but that they’re way better than nothing. The more people use them, instead of leaving themselves with big virtual “Kick Me” sign, the better off we all are.

Haha, so Comodo must make their free product payware to overcome the human subconscious “Where’s the catch” thought process, in order to be respected.

Linux has been battling this for years and still hasn’t won.

Comodo offers a free Internet Suite with AV and anti spyware protection in combination with the renowned Firewall with a strong Hostbased Intrusion Protection System (HIPS) called Defense +.

Check the results of the Proactive Security Test by Matousec: http://www.matousec.com/projects/proactive-security-challenge/results.php . Now see Comodo sweep the floor with NIS 2009.

I dont know why the persistance of ‘free=poor performance’, ‘buy = great choice’ mentality, especially on this board. Look at how many users of free packages, like VLC player and Firefox, just to name 2, that everyone swears by as 100 times better than the ‘commercially’ available products. Open Office is one of the greatest things since sliced bread and it’s free.
Not to mention all of us using Comodo and various forms of free AV with it. None of us feel deprived.
Looking at the Matousec report on proactive defence, it’s quite clear free is every bit as good as buy. 3 out of 6 top performers are free products.
All of this proves one thing. You have to investigate everyone’s claim of good, bad, or evil for yourself and not take the word of any one source. Myself included.

I don’t have a credit card.
And some vendor didn’t have a marketing in my local contry.

The vendor that’s said you “Must” pay for protection should have a global reseller.
For buy easily.

Note: If it was very expensive, I’ll use freeware is better

Note2 : Some small vendor in Korea think freeware was not resposible for the user awareness about security. Has fewer ability lower experience And they said They’re safest in the world.

How pitiful.

If you paid $3000 for your car locks every year, would you buy a car?
An average PC costing few hundred dollars, charging $50 for security of it is madness! That’s why there are tens of millions out there unprotected…

And that $50 for a product that we all know can be infected very easily! So whats the point?


Symantec mentions no evidence that paid is better than free.
Melih, You could always reply openly back to Symantec’s comments about this sort of thing. :wink:

Most people I know are not using any security software. They just think that whatever the default that MS is offering in their windows operating system is enough!

And they are running pirated copy of windows too to make matters worse! Which are not updated!

Of course they all say that their PC has been cumbersome lately lol. :smiley:

I used to be one of them though. Ignorant about the danger of unprotected PC. I installed some PC protection software later on but those were really not as comprehensive as CIS.

I don’t mind paying for excellent protection software but I just don’t have any credit card atm and not planing to have them anytime soon either. I’m even willing to fork say 100 bucks but for a lifetime of services rather than to pay 30 bucks for a year.

Symantec just has to defend it’s turf. Microsoft’s free AV will eat their huge chunk and avast!, AVG and AVIRA are not forgiving either. So they just have to say, hey folks, free is not as good as our stuff that you pay for. It’s logical from marketing perspective, but realistically, most of free solutions are just as good if not better in some aspects.

Hey Guys
Don’t forget that PCMag is probably getting a kick back from Symantec for their comments. I have tried Avast -paid, Nod32 - paid, symantec-paid, Macafee - paid, AVG - free and now CIS. Out of all of these CIS wins hand down and even if I had to pay for CIS I would be glad to do this. I have been using CIS for 12 months and I am not very careful about the type of sites i go to and in that whole time I have never had a virus. To prove this to myself I did a number of on line scans which all came up with a clean bill of health. I have watched CIS evolve to what it is today and as far as I am concerned it is still leading the way as far as innovation and progress goes. How long has it taken the other av’s to recognise that layered protection is the only way to go? Melih had a dream whcih now has come to fruition and this dream is just getting better every day. To Melih I would like to say thanks on behalf all the CIS users out there and don’t ever stop the dream. If people didn’t have dreams of progress the world wouldn’t be technologically where it is today. The other av’s out there can only dream of having a product as good as CIS because the techies at Comodo listen to the average person out there and give them what they want and don’t assume what is wanted. I am very keen to see what the next generation av from Comodo will be like. Again to Melih and the gang, thanks for a superb product.
shadha :comodo110:

I found a nice tidbit article over at PCmag.com from their Security Watch blog where Larry Seltzer argues that free anti-virus products just can't do the job as their paid counterparts do
PCmag.com might as well be called "Paid Commercial Magazine", but back to the point
Larry Seltzer argues that free anti-virus products just can't do the job as their paid counterparts do
I would love to read why Larry Seltzer argue why "He thinks Nortan anti-virus is better then AVIRA (free or paid version)

Maybe Larry Seltzer choose it for it’s yellow color :o

An average PC costing few hundred dollars, charging $50 for security of it is madness!
IMO, I think it's even crazier for some of the prices Microsoft charges for OFFICE and some of the prices for certain versions of windows.
Home and Student1 $149.95 N/A Buy Office Home and Student 2007 Standard $399.95 $239.95 Buy Office Standard 2007 Small Business $449.95 $279.95 Buy Office Small Business 2007 Professional $499.95 $329.95 Buy Office Professional 2007 Ultimate $679.95 $539.95 Buy Office Ultimate 2007

I think the most stupid remark you often hear people using is ‘You get what you pay for’.

It was probably introduced by the fashion ‘industry’ to try to justify ridiculous prices for rubbish.

It was probably introduced by the fashion 'industry' to try to justify ridiculous prices for rubbish.
LOL :) It also sounds like the RIAA >:( or some gas station owner >:-D

Thank you for your kind words Shadha, much appreciate it and we continue to improve and protect.


Unfortunately, I must strongly disagree with this position.

Somehow most of you missed the point.

The particular that worries Symantec (and others) is Microsoft MSE.
Apart from being free and effective it comes from a giant used to push it’s way.

I don’t know up to what point would Microsoft stretch anti-trust laws if it offered MSE with Windows7.
But if not that way it will be done through another. They don’t lack the means nor the purpose.

And providers of free solutions are, or should be, paying attention as well.

Who wants to go back to the days of 386Max, QEMM386 or Netroom?
Or Stac and its contemporaries?
If this move by Microsoft destroys an industry, let it be destroyed.

It shouldn’t have existed in the first place.

In fact it may well destroy the industry. And that wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing.

One can dream of having only providers of free software competing.

Sadly, this statement is very true in a great number of instances.

I have two brother in laws that are a bit on the cheap side. I just shake my head at the problems they have with their “great deals” or off-brand products.

The simple fact of the matter is, quality isn’t cheap. There is just no way around it. In order to cut costs, you need to skimp somewhere. Often this skimping will come back to haunt you.

It’s true in the software world as well. Quality programmers aren’t cheap. Software R & D isn’t cheap. Companies like Comodo are only able to offer a suite like CIS for free because they are making their money elsewhere. If Symantec followed a similar business model, they would be able to pull the same thing off. I guarantee you that it isn’t cheap to produce a product like CIS.

Very well stated. There is much wisdom to be gained in many old sayings, just one example of which is “You get what you pay for”. Everything has a cost, some of it hidden, some of it charged to others at different levels before it reaches the end user. Nothing produced by man is totally free. There are always, and always will be, costs associated with an item at some point in the production process. The fact that Comodo lets end-users have CIS for no charge should make it that much more valuable to the end-user, even though the end-user didn’t spend any of his labor in acquiring the product. When all costs associated with the production of an item are passed along to the consumer, the old saying “You get what you pay for” can be most accurately applied. In a traditional business model, the more labor/materials put into a product, the higher the cost is going to be.