Microsoft Defender Antivirus Review

Technology icon Microsoft, known for its Windows operating system, is equally known for a history of subpar antivirus protection. Its previous Windows Defender product generally performed poorly in independent tests.

Microsoft has worked to turn that around. In 2020, the tech giant released a rebranded antivirus solution, replacing the old Windows Defender product with the superior Microsoft Defender Antivirus. The new solution’s malware protection capabilities are potent.

Independent testing firm AV-Test Institute subjected Microsoft Defender Antivirus to over 13,000 malware samples. Microsoft’s product successfully stopped them all. Against hundreds of zero-day threats, which exploit undiscovered software vulnerabilities, it again stopped 100%, better than the industry average of 98.9%.

Microsoft Defender Antivirus Review

Microsoft Defender Antivirus acts as the threat protection option in Windows Security. Image source: Author

What makes Microsoft Defender Antivirus superior to its predecessors? The new solution adopted technologies such as machine learning, data analysis, and Microsoft’s cloud computing infrastructure. This allows Microsoft Defender Antivirus to identify hidden threats and attacks trying to circumvent traditional detection methodologies.

Microsoft Defender Antivirus does its job well, but offers no other endpoint protection features. It stops at stopping malware.

It’s part of the Microsoft Windows Security suite, which offers a few other protection capabilities, such as a firewall. But if you require tools to manage multiple endpoints, set security policies, and other IT tasks, neither Microsoft Defender Antivirus nor Microsoft Windows Security is going to fill those functions.

That said, Microsoft Defender Antivirus comes with two big advantages. It’s pre-installed as part of Microsoft Windows Security on all Windows machines, saving your IT team the trouble of setting up and deploying the software. It’s also free.

That value is hard to pass up, especially for small businesses with limited budgets and even smaller IT departments. This makes Microsoft Defender Antivirus a viable option for organizations with little or no IT team.

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