Having used products from PC Tools before, namely their ‘Spyware Doctor’ application which has been a very popular security program for quite some time, I was excited to see how Internet Security 2010 would hold up against other competition in the security market.
Available for a relatively low recommended price point of £49.95 (that includes a 3 user license), the PC Tools Internet Security 2010 suite offers anti-spyware, anti-virus, firewall and spam protection all in one package.
Installation and Setup
Installation of the package was extremely simple and mostly automated. You have the option to add a security toolbar to your email client too, with Mozilla Thunderbird supported as well as Microsoft’s own Outlook.
Once installation has been completed, you’ll have to restart your computer. On first launch, a scan will automatically begin, but unless the product is registered, you won’t be able to repair any issues. As well as the scan being run on first launch, Internet Security will ask you if the current network that you’re connected to can be trusted, ensuring tight security.
The user interface of Internet Security 2010 is simple enough to get around, with tabs on the left hand side of the window offering different sections. On the other hand, it is looking a little dated. This is especially apparent when being used on Windows Vista or 7 (I conducted the testing of Internet Security on a Windows 7 machine). This is mainly due to the fact that it doesn’t use a conventional window design, but remains dated with the custom XP styled GUI.
This is made ever more visible, as other windows in the application use Windows 7 styling, so more consistency is needed here.
The tabs on the left side of the main window offer easy access to the key functions of the suite. This includes scanning your system and managing the various settings and tools too.
Anti-Virus and Anti-Spyware Scanning
When scanning your system, you can choose to perform a full system scan, or save time with an Intelli-scan instead. It’s recommended that you perform a full scan every week, and it doesn’t take too long to do so. A full scan of over 600,000 files on my system took just 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Running the full scan provided some interesting results, as it found not only some adware on my machine, but also a trojan virus that had been there for quite some time! More importantly, the virus was removed without any problems straight from the application. This is quite a big factor, as I copied the file to another machine and used a separate anti-virus which couldn’t remove it itself, but required a third party remover.
As well as being able to scan your system for viruses and other malware, you can manage a large collection of settings in the, you guessed it, ‘Settings’ tab. This goes from general settings all the way up to the scheduling of quick and full system scans, as well as anti-spam and firewall settings.
PC Tools Internet Security 2010 is a great system for making sure that your computer is well protected against the latest web threats, and other nasty surprises that may be lurking on your hard drive.
I’d like to see future versions sporting an updated interface, as the current one is certainly showing its age a little, but as far as scanning performance goes, Internet Security 2010 is tough to beat.
If you want to try it out for yourself, you can download it from the PC Tools website or buy it for around £30 from Amazon.