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Next-Generation Antivirus vs. Traditional Antivirus: what’s right for your business?

As cyber threats evolve, the way we counteract these threats must also advance. This article outlines the core differences between Next Generation Antivirus (NGAV) and traditional Antivirus (AV).

First Things First: What Is ‘Antivirus’?


Antivirus software is a type of program designed to prevent, search for, detect, and remove software viruses, and other malicious software like worms, trojans, adware, and more. At its core, antivirus programs are the first line of defence, providing a basic level of protection against common types of malware that threaten computers and networks.

The primary function of antivirus software is to scan, identify, and manage the removal of malicious software from a computer. This process traditionally involves comparing the files and programs on a computer against a database of known types of malware and identifying suspicious behaviour that might indicate infection. Upon detection of malicious code, the antivirus software works to neutralise the threat, typically by quarantining or directly removing the offending files from the system.

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Don’t All Computers Come with Inbuilt Antivirus?


Many modern computers do come with built-in antivirus solutions, providing a baseline level of security right out of the box. For instance, Windows operating systems include Windows Defender, a comprehensive antivirus and anti-malware component that offers real-time protection against threats. Similarly, macOS has built-in security features designed to protect against malware and viruses, although it doesn’t include an explicitly named antivirus program.

However, while these inbuilt antivirus solutions provide essential protection and are beneficial for general use, they may not always offer the comprehensive coverage required to safeguard against the increasingly sophisticated and diverse range of cyber threats that businesses and advanced users face.

This built-in antivirus software is a form of ‘traditional antivirus’ as it focuses on basic threat detection and removal capabilities. These days, this basic protection may not be sufficient for specific needs, such as compliance with industry regulations, protection against targeted attacks, or advanced and zero-day viruses

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Traditional Antivirus: The Known Approach

Traditional antivirus software, the foundation of digital defence for many years, primarily employs signature-based detection. This method relies on identifying malware through a database of known signatures. While this approach is effective against widespread, identified viruses, it faces challenges in detecting new, modified, or previously unseen malware.

Benefits of Traditional Antivirus:

  1. Proven Effectiveness Against Known Threats: traditional antivirus is highly effective at detecting and neutralising malware that has been previously identified and catalogued in its signature database.

  2. Straightforward Operation: with its reliance on signatures, traditional antivirus offers a straightforward approach to malware detection, making it user-friendly and easy to manage for individuals and businesses alike.

  3. Cost-Effectiveness: many traditional antivirus solutions are ‘add-ons’ and built-in to other products. Therefore, traditional antivirus can provide a basic level of protection without any financial investment.

Limitations of Traditional Antivirus:

  1. Inability to Address Zero-Day Attacks: traditional antivirus struggles to protect against zero-day attacks, which exploit unknown vulnerabilities before they can be patched or a signature is created, leaving systems exposed to new threats.

  2. Lack of Behavioural Analysis: unlike next-generation antivirus, traditional solutions lack behavioural analysis capabilities, making them unable to detect malware based solely on suspicious behaviour or anomalies in system operation.

  3. Dependency on Regular Updates: the effectiveness of traditional antivirus heavily relies on frequent updates to its malware signature database. If the software is not updated regularly, its ability to detect and prevent attacks decreases, posing a risk to security.

Limited to Malware Detection: traditional antivirus often focuses narrowly on malware detection and removal, without offering additional layers of security, such as phishing protection, network attack defence, or encryption, which are increasingly necessary in today’s complex cyber threat landscape.

Traditional Antivirus

Next-Generation Antivirus: Advanced Security

Next-generation antivirus introduces an advanced framework for cyber security, utilising a mix of technologies including machine learning, artificial intelligence, and behavioural analysis. Unlike traditional AV, NGAV does not solely depend on signature databases. Instead, it identifies threats based on their behaviour, offering protection against zero-day attacks, ransomware, and advanced persistent threats that might bypass traditional defences.

Comparative Advantages of NGAV

  1. Predictive Analysis: NGAV employs machine learning algorithms to anticipate and block emerging threats before they manifest, a proactive capability not inherent in traditional AV.

  2. Behavioural Detection: NGAV monitors the behaviour of applications and files in real-time, detecting malicious activity based on actions rather than known signatures, providing a dynamic response to new threats.

  3. Lower Dependency on Signatures: While traditional AV systems require regular updates to their signature databases, NGAV’s focus on behaviour and patterns lessens this dependency, ensuring more consistent protection.

  4. Broader Threat Coverage: NGAV is designed to protect against a wider array of cybersecurity threats, including but not limited to malware, ransomware, phishing, and exploit attacks.

Adopting NGAV allows businesses to benefit from the latest security technologies, providing a stronger defence against modern cyber risks. This is particularly important as the sophistication of cyber attacks increases, making the limitations of traditional antivirus more apparent.

Next Generation Antivirus Advanced Security

Is Next Generation Antivirus More Expensive?

At Jam Cyber, we understand the importance of cost-effective cybersecurity solutions for businesses of all sizes. That’s why we’ve structured our NGAV offering to be as accessible as traditional antivirus solutions in terms of pricing. With Jam Cyber, businesses do not have to choose between advanced protection and affordability. Our NGAV solution is priced competitively with traditional AV products, ensuring businesses can benefit from state-of-the-art security technologies without exceeding their budget.


Is Next Generation Antivirus More Expensive

Should My Business Invest In NGAV?

When it comes to safeguarding your business, next-generation antivirus (NGAV) will give you more protection than traditional antivirus. NGAV offers a comprehensive approach, using advanced technologies like machine learning to pre-emptively tackle threats. This means better protection against a broader range of cyber risks, including zero-day attacks and complex malware.

To find out more about protecting your business, visit our product and pricing page or contact us via the form below.

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