Managed service providers (MSPs) and value-added resellers (VARs) who have been in business for a while probably remember a time when their clients considered deploying antivirus software as optional. Instead, they used the free antivirus software preloaded onto their PCs and hoped for the best. After all, the risk was low. However, times, the threat landscape—and antivirus features—have changed.
Statista reports that there are now 5.6 billion malware attacks each year around the world, impacting 68.5 percent of organizations. Additionally, the number of malware types and variants is now about 678 million, up from 28.84 million in 2010.
As a result, robust antivirus has become an essential part of a comprehensive security strategy and vital to protecting data, networks, and businesses themselves from ransomware and other malware attacks.
Must-Have Antivirus Features
MSPs and VARs can choose from numerous antivirus options for their portfolios, but it’s vital to ensure the antivirus solutions you provide include the features your clients need to protect their operations. Evaluate solutions using this checklist:
This antivirus feature is the most obvious for antivirus software, but it probably also takes the most vetting. How software attempts to identify malware can differ from one solution to another. Some software bases malware detection on comparing signatures to known signatures of malicious code. Once identified, the software will then block the code from running. The problem is that thousands of new malware variants emerge each month, and antimalware that relies on identifying known malicious signatures may not catch new threats on any given day.
On the other hand, heuristic solutions compare code against a set of rules. They look at the behavior of the code to determine whether it is malicious and block harmful activity. However, hackers and cyberattack groups understand how these solutions work and design their malware to avoid detection.
Still, other solutions, from next-generation antivirus vendors, leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to learn a business’ typical operations and detect anomalous behavior that can indicate the presence of malware.
Look for a provider that offers antivirus features that provide the level of protection your clients need and that updates automatically to provide up-to-date protection.
Your clients typically upload, download, and share data. But malware can do that as well. Therefore, make sure that the solution you provide to your clients can understand and flag activity that falls outside normal operating parameters. Additionally, the software should enable centralized management that provides visibility into whether the software is active or if a user has turned it off.
It’s one thing to detect malware. It’s another to remove it from your clients’ systems. Provide a solution with the capability to effectively disinfect a system from malware when it’s detected.
4Email protection, antispam and secure browser
The antivirus solution you provide may be part of a suite that helps prevent your clients’ network from being infected in the first place. Consider choosing software that you can guarantee will work seamlessly with phishing protection, antispam and a secure browser.
Where to Learn More
Vendors can provide you with more information on the antivirus features of the solutions they offer and help you build a total security solution for your clients. XaaS Journal has identified dozens of providers with channel programs to help you focus your search for an antivirus solution to add to your portfolio. Visit their websites and request the information you need to make the best decision for your business and for your clients.