You should feel safe browsing the Internet. Still, sometimes you encounter threats that can harm your computer.
With the number of malware attacks is on the rise, you need software programs to keep your devices safe.
Malwarebytes is one of the most popular options to protect your devices. The software detects and removes viruses, ransomware, and other malware, thanks to its robust anti-malware technology.
If you’re interested in upgrading your antivirus and anti-malware protection, our Malwarebytes review has everything you need to know to make the right choice.
What Is Malwarebytes?
Malwarebytes is an anti-malware software for Microsoft Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS.
The software removes unwanted and potentially harmful malware from your computer, phone, and tablet.
That adds up to 187 million malware scans each month and eight million detected or blocked threats each day.
Malwarebytes has plenty of antivirus and malware protection features, and our Malwarebytes review covers them one by one.
This categorization lets you compare Malwarebytes with competitors like Windows Defender, McAfee Total Protection, and Norton 360 Standard.
Three Different Scanning Options
Malwarebytes has three types of scanning:
- Threat Scan
- Custom Scan
- Hyper Scan
These options let you determine how comprehensive a scan you need for your device. If you want to change a selection, click the Scan tab in the Malwarebytes window.
Threat Scans are the most comprehensive of the three scan types. They also take the longest to complete. If you have the premium version of Malwarebytes, you can run the program once per day by default.
Threat Scans look at vulnerable objects on your device. That includes memory, startup, registry, and file system objects.
For instance, a Threat Scan can detect when malware makes unwanted changes to your registry configuration or files on your local disk drive.
The scans use heuristic analysis, which looks at your device’s objects to find, review, and nullify threats.
The heuristic analysis makes sure those threats cannot reassemble and compromise your computer, tablet, or mobile device.
Custom Scans give you complete control over when you scan your device and what the program scans. All you have to do is check the areas you want to review.
You can also toggle the stringency of each scan. There are four areas to consider when generating Custom Scans. Memory objects are a byproduct of the operating system processes, drivers, and other applications.
Rootkits include files on your local disk that influence a system’s behavior while remaining invisible to the operating system. Custom Scans let you personalize your response to different threats.
You can choose the Potentially Unwanted Program (PUP), which lets you decide whether the software ignores detections, warns you about detections, or treats detections as malware.
The same line of responses applies to Potentially Unwanted Modifications (PUM).
Hyper Scan offers a birds-eye view of threats. It focuses on the most vulnerable areas, such as memory and startup objects.
While Hyper Scans are faster than Threat Scans, they do not provide the same in-depth review or analysis of your device.
If you find something wrong during a Hyper Scan, follow up with a Threat Scan. This approach lets you nip potential problems in the bud and discover additional threats on your device.
Note that you can only run Hyper Scans if you have Malwarebytes Premium or Malwarebytes Trial.
Easy to Use
Any Malwarebytes review should mention the user-friendly design and functionality. The ease of use begins with the initial download and installation, which are fast and straightforward.
The company website even includes step-by-step instructions. The initial scan takes a matter of minutes to review all objects on your device.
If Malwarebytes finds potentially harmful files, it puts them in quarantine. You can hold the files until you choose to restore or delete them.
The software also has a simple two-step exclusion process where you can exclude certain websites, applications, or files during a Custom Scan.
Multiple Forms of Protection
Malwarebytes protection comes in four layers:
- Exploit protection
These layers operate at the same time and create the foundation for using Malwarebytes. Note that this real-time protection is not available with the Malwarebytes free version.
Malwarebytes use virus signatures and cutting-edge heuristic analysis to find and review potential threats.
The protection helps you identify and mitigate previously unidentified threats.
Adware Cleaner – (AdwCleaner)
Malwarebytes provides an adware cleaner, known as AdwCleaner. It mitigates the download and display of advertisements of infected devices.
These harmful components can collect data on you and alter your search results if left unchecked. AdwCleaner removes unnecessary browser toolbars, too.
If you inadvertently install a toolbar from a package, AdwCleaner blocks it. This proactive defense keeps your memory and processor power operating at full capacity.
Malwarebytes Browser Guard provides a safe and fast web browsing experience. The free extension blocks content from malicious websites while blocking ads.
Installing Browser Guard even makes surfing speeds up to four times faster.
Malwarebytes’ fake tech support scams feature is the first of its kind. It lets you circumvent pop-ups and links that otherwise compromise your computer.
Browser Guard also eliminates browser hijackers and lockers.
Malwarebytes offers consistent, though unremarkable, lab performances. The software blocks 99.9 percent of sample threats during AV-Test results.
That figure dips down to 98.6 percent and 93.2 percent in the zero-day tests, while the industry average is 97 percent.
The performance varies based on threats. Malwarebytes performs best against malware. The software tests for harmful samples start when you open a folder with harmful content.
The anti-phishing capabilities overlap with the Browser Guard. A quarter of the detections that Malwarebytes makes initiate with Browser Guard.
While the feature is consistent, it is not as thorough as its competitors, such as Kaspersky and Trend Micro, which have 100 percent detection rates.
You can download the Malwarebytes mobile app in the App Store or from Google Play. Each app takes minutes to download and features a seamless interface.
While you can use Malwarebytes for iOS and Android devices, there are slight variations between the two. The Android version scans your phone for unwanted malware and programs, such as spyware and ransomware.
If the antivirus software finds a threat, you have three options: Ignore, Delete, or Whitelist. The appropriate response depends on the threat source and severity.
This service lets you block calls from unknown or suspicious numbers. The same applies to text messages that you mark as junk or spam.
Both apps provide reliable phishing protection when you go online. The antivirus software looks for potential threats and alerts you when you are at risk. The iOS app even blocks ads and ad tracking tools.
You can contact the Malwarebytes customer support team anytime Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. UTC. The primary means of communication is a live chat feature, though you may have to wait to connect with a live representative.
Malwarebytes representatives are friendly and knowledgeable. They will answer all of your questions, whether you have issues with your antivirus or customizing scans.
While the customer support team is reliable, you may become frustrated with their occasional delays. Malwarebytes offers email support and a community forum for additional questions.
Send an email with your query, and you can expect a response within a couple of days. The community forum is an information hub for posting questions and user guides.
It also has videos about antivirus software and how-to articles.
If you decide to upgrade from the free to the premium version of Malwarebytes, you can select from one of three pricing platforms. The basic level offers the full package for one device.
You pay $3.33 per month or $39.99 per year. The second tier is Malwarebytes Premium for Home. The plan covers three devices, though you can protect up to ten for an extra $20.
You pay $5.00 per month or $59.99 per year. The highest tier is Malwarebytes for Business, which comes with four packages.
The company lets you customize pricing for the three additional packages that cover multiple devices and have advanced features. The price comes to $10 per month or $119.97 per year.
Malwarebytes works for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. You can also install extensions for Chrome and Firefox, though browser extensions do not come with the antivirus package. Both extensions are free.
The Bottom Line
Malwarebytes free version is excellent at mitigating threats that escape your regular antivirus. The program comes with a simple and user-friendly interface, making it one of the most accessible apps.
Each scan is remarkably fast, so you see results in real-time. Malwarebytes is compatible with most traditional antivirus programs.
If you use the free version, you’ll have to deal with pop-ups offering to upgrade you to the paid version. You also do not receive ransomware protection for Windows XP or Vista.
If you are willing to pay the small annual fee, Malwarebytes Premium is worth the investment. You can scan faster, perform scheduled scans, and update the software automatically.
The premium version even provides real-time protection for round-the-clock security.
FAQ’s about Malwarebytes
Should I get Malwarebytes Premium?
Malwarebytes is one of the leading anti-malware software in the world. The free version is useful if you need to scan and clean malware.
If you want enhanced malware protection, including antivirus software protection, download Malwarebytes Premium.
The premium version gives you 100 percent capability as antivirus software. It offers real-time protection against threats, so you always remain covered.
Not sure if Malwarebytes Premium is right for you? Try the free 14-day trial and see for yourself.
What are the Signs of a Malware Infection?
The most common symptom of a malware infection is a slow device. Examine your system memory to verify the source of the problem.
Other potential signs of infection include sending unwanted spam, pop-ups, suspicious modem and hard drive activity, and the blue screen of death.
Can I Turn Malwarebytes on and off?
Malwarebytes offers personalized protection, whether you use Malwarebytes Premium or download the free 14-day trial.
That includes disabling Malwarebytes at your leisure. All you have to do is right-click the program icon, select the desired protection shield, and turn off the system.
How Else Can I Protect Against Malware?
When you get malware, bytes damage your device, steal data, and cause permanent damage.
Hackers use this data to make money, either by selling your information on the Dark Web or spreading their malware. You can improve your defenses by:
- Not installing free software
- Increasing browser guard security settings
- Updating security patches
- Avoiding questionable websites
- Not clicking on suspicious emails
- Not responding to an unknown email address
- Using a firewall
- Purchasing anti-spyware
Am I Vulnerable to Malware?
If you use a computer or mobile device, you’re vulnerable to malware.
Researchers suggest that 90 percent of PCs have some form of spyware, which can corrupt your hard drives, steal your passwords, and compromise personal information.
It’s in your best interest to download anti-malware software, regardless of how frequently you browse the Internet.
How Reliable is Malwarebytes as an Antivirus?
Download Malwarebytes Premium, not the free version, if you want improved antivirus protection.
The software offers a robust defense that actively scans and neutralizes threats. The combination of the antivirus and anti-malware capabilities delivers more than enough protection for your device.
How do I Report an Issue?
Check out the Malwarebytes forums if you encounter an issue with the software. First-time users need to make an account before posting. Once you are in the forum, create a topic related to your problem.
Include a brief description of the issue and answer some basic questions. That includes where you encountered the problem, how to replicate it, and whether you duplicated the results.
Make sure to note the outcome, such as an error message or system crash. Attach screenshots and note other computer problems related to your issue.
You can monitor your post to see if other users have had the same experience. Download the Malwarebytes Support Tool in the meantime for additional assistance.
Can I Get a Refund?
Malwarebytes offers a 30-day refund guarantee for any customers not completely satisfied with their purchase.
All you have to do is contact the Malwarebytes Customer Support team to get started. Make sure to visit the Tech Support website if you’re having installation trouble.