Best Antivirus Software For Online English Teachers7 min read
Antivirus software is something that is often overlooked when thinking about the things you will need for teaching English online. But, having solid antivirus software to protect your money maker is one of the better investments you can make along with your headset. Having a computer infected with a virus, malware, or ransomware can cause you to miss classes as you have to deal with poor performance issues. Even worse, you could have to take your computer into the shop for a few days. So, making a small investment in the right antivirus software is a sure step towards preventing any harmful elements from infecting your computer.
Why do I need antivirus software?
As stated above, the primary reason you need antivirus software is to protect your computer from infection. As an online English teacher, your computer is your lifeline to your income stream. If you don’t have a computer because it is in the shop you aren’t going to make money.
Even worse, you may lose your job or significant amounts of money depending on the company you work for and their cancellation policy. So, if you catch a computer virus or malware a few hours before you are to teach classes and suddenly, come class time, you can’t log in, you are going to be in trouble.
This is a very real possibility. In 2016 there were over 6 million new malware specimens recorded according to G Data Security. This amounts to around 780 new types of malware every hour of every day. It is quite literally a jungle out there of trojan horses, password and data stealers, and adware.
You have to be extra cautious with your computer to make sure that it is thoroughly protected from potential infections. Especially if you are looking at getting a new computer for teaching English online, you need to make sure your investment is insured. The best way to do that is by having proper antivirus software in place to stop infections before they even begin.
Do I need antivirus software if I have a Mac?
There is a commonly held belief that Mac’s are impervious to infections from malware and other types of infections. This isn’t entirely true. Mac’s certainly are more immune from viruses and other types of infections than their PC counterparts. This is largely because of the way the operating system works but also because Mac’s are less commonly used worldwide. A computer that is harder to infect and break into and that fewer people use makes for a less desirable target.
This is beginning to change, however, as more people switch over to Mac’s. As this article from Mac World points out, there are quite a number of malware specimens that your Mac could become infected with, especially if you do not have software to prevent it. Some of these types of malware even work by overloading your computer in order to force it to shut down. That’s the last thing you want before class time.
So, even though Mac’s are significantly less likely to become infected with malware, it is a good idea to have antivirus software anywise. Doing this will give you complete peace of mind that the significant investment you made in your Mac, as well as the income you receive from teaching English online, are both protected.
What should I look for in antivirus software?
The most important thing you want to look at is what features are included. Even though the term antivirus is used to describe the software, it is much rarer nowadays to see actual computer viruses. Instead, most of what is out there that can infect your computer comes in the form of malware, adware, ransomware, and other infections programs that are meant to hijack your computer or steal your credit card information or cause you to perform a certain action, like calling a fake support line, in order to generate money.
Having antivirus software that is built for the problems the modern day computer user faces is going to go a long way protecting your computer from potential infection. This means you want software that has an up to date database of new types of malware being released and other potential threats.
Another thing to look at is whether or not the software has active protection capabilities. If you are not protected 24 hours a day, then the software is pretty much useless to you. You need antivirus software that protects your computer whether or not you click the scan button. Most antivirus software now comes equipped with behavior analysis capabilities which will examine your computer and the programs on it for behavior indicative of malware. This is great of giving you constant protection.
Finally, you want to look at how much resources the antivirus software is going to use up. If you are using antivirus software that is resource intensive and slows down your computer to the point you are having trouble using your companies courseware to teach, then it isn’t the best solution for you.
What is the best antivirus software?
Webroot Secure Anywhere
What we like about Webroot:
- Webroot Secure Anywhere is a cloud-based antivirus software which ensures that it isn’t going to put significant strain on your computer. In this regard, it is known as the lightest antivirus software available. This is good for keeping your resources focused where they should be, on teaching.
- You can easily scan your computer in only a few minutes. This means you can quickly scan your computer and deal with any potential problems before you are to teach classes without having to worry about running your antivirus program in the background.
- Despite being put through numerous stress tests from different organizations including PC Mag and others, Webroot consistently managed to catch 100% of malware and other infections. You can be confident that no matter what you come across online your computer will be fully protected come class time.
Intego Mac Internet Security
What we like about Intego:
- As with Webroot for the PC, Intego antivirus software has consistently passed stress tests conducted by organizations such as Mac World. This means that when bombarded with malware and other types of infection, Intego was able to find and neutralize 100% of the infections and even prevent most of the infections from even taking hold.
- The scans are shorter than many of the leading competitors taking only 30 minutes or less to do a complete scan of the computer. This should give you a reasonable amount of time to scan your computer before a class if you believe it to be infected or performing poorly.
- Intego comes with a number of handy extra features including a secure firewall and a safe search plugin which adds extra layers of security when you are using your Mac.
What are some final tips?
There are many other antivirus software brands available on the market. The above two, however, have been consistently ranked as some of the best available and meet the criteria of what is needed for an online English teacher, which is namely performance that is non-resource intensive. The great thing about both Webroot and Intego is that you can download the software for a free trial before committing to anything. This will allow you to see how the software interacts with your computer and how everything works out while you are teaching to make sure the antivirus software doesn’t pull too many resources. Both of these pieces of software are very cheap in comparison to other brands on the market. So, whether you are looking to protect your PC or your Mac the above brands should be able to do the job for you.
I want to help you find an awesome job in the ESL industry and then excel at it. I’m a TESOL certified teacher with over two years of experience working both online and offline. I have worked with students ranging from young learners to advanced level university speakers and have worked in recruiting and hiring, teacher training, and content creation. I’ve seen the good and bad of the ESL industry and I’m here to tell you about it.