Now, more than ever, everyone should put online security on top of their concerns. Malware and viruses are becoming more and more dangerous and damaging. Once a mere annoyance, these threats can affect anyone by stealing their identities, infiltrating their systems, and even access their bank accounts.
That is why it is necessary to put safety measures everywhere. Installing primary antivirus programs and internet security suites can decrease the likelihood of infection.
These programs usually scan your whole system and even target specific files. However, they can be slow and burdensome to the system at times.
What if you just need to scan a file? Or check if a particular website is infected?
Advantages of Online Virus Scanner
Using online virus scanners offer several benefits. First, most online virus scanners are free. Some may have limited functions, but they are still useful especially if you just want to scan a particular file. Additionally, online virus scanners are always updated. Developers can add updates and upgrades to their systems without having the users download it every time.
Moreover, unlike your standard security suites on your computer, online virus scanners can utilize multiple scanners on their servers. Most, if not all, will use services from other security programs which scans your files at the same time. Some viruses and malware are smart enough to fool or even halt the operation of the installed security suite. Online virus scanners can avoid this scenario and catch well-hidden threats.
Here are some of the best online virus scanners.
Best Online Virus Scanners
ESET Online Scanner
The ESET Online Scanner is one of the company’s basic virus scanning tool. It is completely free. The scanner is compatible with most Windows system, even as old as Windows 2003. It uses most popular browsers such as Firefox, Opera, Chrome, Edge, and Internet Explorer 6. While it is an online scanner, you have to download a small 32MB tool which downloads the database signature and scans your system.
It claims to find known and unknown viruses, worms, Trojans, spyware, phishing and other threats. The one-click scan makes it intuitive for any user. It is always up-to-date as it connects to the Internet every scan. It uses ESET’s Threat Lab’s detection algorithms to root out any questionable files. The ESET Online Scanner is perfect for a quick scan of your system, especially if you suspect that a threat is blocking the normal function of your central security program.
Jotti’s Malware Scan
Jotti’s Malware Scan is a free service which scans suspicious files. Unlike ESET Online Scanner, you do not have to download any tool. It focuses on examining the data you upload to its web application. That means, Jotti’s Malware Scan cannot be used to scan your system. It accepts up to five files at the same time. However, take note that there is a 100MB file size limit for each file uploaded.
Jotti’s Malware Scan uses several antivirus and anti-malware services. Upon uploading, the application will use popular scanners such as Bitdefender, AVG, Avast, ESET, Trend Micro, and more. Additionally, the tool always uses the updated versions of the scanners mentioned. While it looks simplistic, it is a useful tool for scanning specific files, especially installers and executable files, before using it on your system.
Virus Total is an online tool which analyzes suspicious files and URLs. It detects different types of malware, viruses, worms, and Trojans. It inspects items with over 70 antivirus scanners and URL/domain blacklisting services. Virus Total accepts files and URLs. You can even use its search function to look for domains, IP address, URLs, and file hash. The tool uses a wide variety of scanning services such as heuristic engines, signature database, metadata extraction, and malicious signal identification.
Virus Total does not only report if a file or URL is clean or not. It displays each engines detection and results. Additionally, it identifies what threats are detected. URL scans also return more details including Whois Lookup, known subdomains, files that your browser download when you visit the URL, and which system files communicate with the URL. Virus Total makes it a useful URL analyzer which protects your system even before visiting the website.
F-Secure Online Scanner
F-Secure Online Scanner is an online tool which gets rid of viruses and spyware on your PC. Much like ESET Online Scanner, it aims to clean your PC of any threats lurking in it. It is safe to use along with any security programs. F-Secure Online Scanner is free to use. Also, it only requires a small download which is less than 1MB. It does not install itself on your system, but it downloads the latest threat signature database from its servers.
F-Secure Online Scanner is perfect during those times when you suspect that a threat is hiding on your system. It is important to constantly observe your computer’s performance. If you see a significant slowing down of apps and function, it is best to run your primary security program. Then, run online apps like F-Secure Online Scanner as a secondary solution to make sure your system is clean.
Metadefender is a simple online tool which scans and analyzes files, hashes, and IP addresses. It is very reminiscent of Jotti’s Malware Scan and Virus Total. You just need to upload a file or enter an IP address for scanning. One of its unique services is analyzing suspicious emails. You can forward suspicious emails to firstname.lastname@example.org for analyzing. It will return results which will help you determine if the email is worth opening at all.
Interestingly, OPSWAT, the company developing Metadefender, also offers reports about current trends and news about security. Individually, you can access malware outbreak reports and statistics and other related information.
Online scanners are useful tools to ensure that your system is clean. Additionally, you can use them to examine files, URLs, and hashes. However, they cannot replace your primary security suite. These tools need a constant Internet connection. Moreover, most programs are for specific functions. That means, they are perfect as a secondary security layer and not as your lone protection.