Is it worth using Microsoft Defender as your primary antivirus?

When it comes to which one antivirus adopt for a given system, including those who argue that it is not worth buying a paid antivirus, those the opposite and those, instead, gets along well with Microsoft Defender and decides not to install anything else, the debate can be heated. Skipping the discussion free vs paid antivirusof which we have had the opportunity to speak extensively, here we want to focus on a specific question, namely whether or not it is worth using Microsoft Defender as main antivirus (or as the only security tool) on your device.

Formerly known as Windows DefenderMicrosoft’s integrated antivirus has had a bit of a troubled experience: over the years, it has earned a fairly negative reputation, and up until a certain point, it was considered one of the weakest antivirus on the market. With the arrival of Windows 10However, the situation has changed, Microsoft has worked hard to improve Defender, constantly updating it and fixing various bugs. Moreover, Defender has improved to the point that, in 2020, it scored 95.5% in the Real world protection test conducted by the AV-Comparatives organization between July and October.

Microsoft Defender has changed its name from Microsoft Defender

Over time then Defender has been improved, with the introduction of some new features interesting, like theisolation of compromised PCs from the network to avoid side attacks, in addition Microsoft also brought Defender on iOS and Androidproving that the company really wants to get serious with their antivirus.

In the face of these positive notes, therefore, we can say that is it worth using Microsoft Defender? The answer is not obvious. First of all, the specific use case must always be considered: if on the one hand a PC you work with and in which you keep accounting records, or other important documents, or perhaps a notebook that you use for study purposes, could justify the purchase of a paid antivirus package, perhaps between those particularly effective against ransomwareon the other hand, for a device designed primarily for entertainment, where you don’t keep anything vital, Defender’s protection might be enough.

The reflection might seem obvious, but there are some important aspects to consider. First, in the last Real-World Protection Test by AV-Comparativesconducted between February and May 2022, Microsoft Defender has lost a few points, reaching a protection rate of 99.0%. On paper it seems like a small thing, but looking at the ranking, you can see how Defender is practically at the bottom, followed only by McAfee and TotalAV. Now, the data itself does not necessarily indicate that Defender is to be discarded regardless, but simply that there are far more effective alternativesto come Avira And Trend Microwho get the 100% in the same test.

Another factor to consider is the fact that Microsoft is not always prompt in fixing bugs or taking action to mitigate certain vulnerabilities. Just think of the case Follinain which Microsoft has released the patch after some time from the report by some researchers. In another case, as reported by TechRadar United KingdomMicrosoft fixed a defender vulnerability, apparently ten years old, one month after the report.

The conclusion, therefore, is that if your work or your next exam depends on your PC, perhaps it would be advisable to rely on a commercial antivirus among the most recommendedalso in version Free or Lightif your requirements are not too stringent. If not, if you use your device for gaming and browsing, and don’t have vital data to strongly protect, Microsoft Defender may be more than enough given that, in standard use cases, it still remains a good free antivirus.

In any case, if you find yourself in that group of users who need more effective protection than that offered by the Microsoft tool, here is our top 3 of the best antivirus ever, to have a starting point for evaluating your next purchase .