Viruses, worms, spyware, trojans can infect a computer or any modern gadget, as well as being able to erase useful files, steal personal data, slow down the PC work. In short, they cause a lot of troubles. We use our computers and mobile devices to store sensitive data or make financial operations, so, there is a high risk to be hacked. To be fully protected, it is a great idea to use some antivirus software.
It supports up to 5 devices, including Windows, Mac, and Android, and provides modern algorithms against all modern online threats. However, it is not just a conventional antivirus — this is instead a set of tools to optimize the system performance with antivirus capabilities. One of the features which makes it different from other products is whitelisting technology. In other words, it’s a list of well known trusted applications the system is allowed to work with.
These products will never cause any troubles. Despite being a quite impressive solution, the whitelisting feature has quite many false alarms. It just blocks a lot of safe and legit programs — it can frustrate a majority of users. Moreover, the developers did not add any traditional heuristic and signature scanning techniques.
They sincerely believe that whitelisting is the best way to fight against malicious software. Besides, they provide Fileless Script Blocking and RDP Port Controls to guarantee the security of your device. All these features allowed to achieve extremely low system load — you will be able to use the software even on old computer or smartphone. And if we consider that it supports Windows XP — it will be irreplaceable for the owners.
In the review, we will review its features, pricing, as well as weak and strong points. We hope it will help you to make the right choice.
PC Matic Antivirus Price and Plans
PC Matic provides two pricing options: annual and lifetime. The lifetime one is great options compared to many other similar products — not all of them give the lifetime license. If you decide to choose an annual subscription, you will have to pay $50 per year. Lifetime license will cost you $150. However, it is a discount price — without it, they will charge you $300.
Anyways, it is not that much — you will save a lot of money. For payment, you will able to use PayPal and bank cards. In both cases, the subscription will include up to 5 devices. So it will be able to protect all your devices — home desktop PC, laptop, smartphone, tablet, etc. Also, with the annual plan, you will be able to select up to 125 devices. But we found a strange thing in their pricing policy. If you select up to 20 devices, it will cost $10 per device. If you take 25 devices and more, each one will cost $12.00. Quite strange, isn’t it?
What about the free version or trial period? There is some free version of the app. But we cannot say it’s full-fledged —you can scan a system. Even if it finds some threats, you will not be able to fix it. This feature is available only in the paid version. So, the only way to test the app is to get a subscription and request a refund within 30 days if you do not like how it works.
PC Matic Antivirus Pros
- Unusual approach to protection from threats — it uses a white list instead of traditional blacklist
- Affordable pricing — better than most competitors and the ability to get a lifetime subscription
- Refund guarantee within 30 days after the purchase
- Great optimization tools
- Quite reliable protection against threats, including spyware, worms, trojans, rootkits, and phishing attacks
- Full system scan
- Informative page with scanning results
Any reliable antivirus solution should effectively fight against ransomware, polymorphic viruses, APTs, and zero-day attacks. For that, many studios regularly update the scanning core and add all the possible threats to the blacklist. So if they failed to add, you remain insecure. With PC Matic whitelisting, the app will allow running only trusted and secure apps.
It will automatically block all the apps, sites, and files which are not included in the white list. It’s unusual and some unique approach to fighting against all possible online threats. If you try to open the application out of the list, it is sent to PC Matic to be reviewed within 24 hours.
Great antivirus features and reliable protection
Besides whitelisting, PC Matic uses several other antivirus options:
- Fileless Script Block to protect your system from the threads which do not use .exe files. It blocks all the dangerous scripts and prevents all the possible harm without executable files.
- RDP Port Controls to avoid brute force attacks. The feature is especially effective on Windows computers.
All the features provide reliable protection for all your devices. It timely detects 0-day malware attacks, threats which are spread via email and web, as well as any other malware. The antivirus core is so powerful that it blocks even safe programs.
However, the idea is not the worst. It is much better to enable the secure app rather than fix the troubles caused by malware, which can access the system by default. Several antivirus testing agencies used several tests to see its efficiency. Thus, it demonstrated a perfect result — up to 100% percent — in dangerous files detection.
At the same time, it failed the VB100 test several times. We performed another test — copied the samples of malware to the hard drive. What was the reaction of PC Matic? It blocked them all mainly because they were not in the white list. We are and the test once again in 24 hours. The results were a bit different — the Super Shield analyzed the files. We conclude that you can rely on PC Matic in everyday protection of all your devices.
As mentioned earlier, PC Matic antivirus is more than just an antivirus — it also provides a great set of optimization tools. Besides protection, it will improve system performance and optimize its work. It includes the following options:
- Adding more free space by deleting the junk files and cache
- Internet connection optimization
- Disk fragmentation
- Automatic driver updates
- Registry cleaning, system speedup
- SSD performance improvement
- System startup optimization — it will run faster
- Adds security patches to vulnerable apps
Full system scan
While most antivirus products can scan the system to detect a specific threat, PC Matic performs the full scan, including performance tweaks and disc fragmentation. In the beginning, it runs a quick scan to detect possible issues.
The systems scan includes security, performance, stability, and maintenance. It detects junk files, outdated drivers, crapware, annoying ads, and, of course, dangerous files. Also, it runs various benchmarks and creates a report with a lot of details. If the app fails to run some tests, it highlights them in red, and if it just skipped some of them — in grey.
In its turn, all the tests are highlighted in several colors: green — excellent result; yellow, blue, and purple — something went wrong; the application will also provide several possible solutions. Furthermore, you can select what kind of scan the app will run after the launch. Open Options —Scan Options — Quick/Full Malware Scan — Full or Quick.
PC Matic Antivirus Cons
- A lot of false alarms — the antivirus often blocks trusted applications, files, and websites
- You cannot run a specific scan — only full scan is available
- Some apps launch slower.
A lot of false alarms
Despite being quite effective against viruses and other threats, the whitelisting feature generates a lot of false alarms. Recently, Virus Bulletin ran PC Matic through several security tests. It demonstrated defect result in dangerous software detection. The result reached 100%. At the same time, it blocked more than 800 safe programs.
It’s a huge result — some competitors demonstrated as low as 12 false alarms. It’s one of the weakest points of PC Matic which can confuse inexperienced users. In every case, you will have to add the file or application to the white list manually.
Slower apps launch
While PC Matic, in general, does not influence the device performance, some standard apps launch slower. It’s especially significant on computers with a hard drive. Why is it so?
The application has to check whether the program or website is on the white list. Of course, it takes some time. You cannot change the mechanism as it is a principle PC Matic working method. You cannot perform a specific scan. Being a definite advantage, a full scan is, at the same time, a decent disadvantage.
How so? You are not able to select a specific scan like performance, security, stability, and maintenance. PC Matic runs them all at the same time — you are not able to change it. As a result, it takes more time to complete the system check. Is it necessary for an average user? A big question.
PC Matic Extra Features
Built-in Ad Blocker
Do you feel annoyed by the domination of advertisement in the browser and other apps? PC Matic has a built-in adblocker. It is effective and works the same way as all other ad blockers.
How to install and setup PC Matic
To install PC Matic, first, download and save the installation file after the purchase. Next, follow all the steps offered by the install wizard. The installation is not complicated and will take you not more than several minutes. The home screen provides access to all the essential features:
- Support —quick access to customer support
- Shop — to get or manage a subscription
- Logout — to change the user account
- Master Scheduler — plan scanning for all the computers connected to your account
- Master Reports — view the reports from all the computers in your account
- Details — detailed information about current computer
- Super Shield — manage a Super Shield feature
- Options — detailed PC Matic configuration
- Scan — run a scan with the current configuration
- Add a Computer — add a new device to your account
In the Options tab, you can configure scheduler, scanning, whitelists, Super Shield, language, and quarantine. Nothing complicated — just be attentive.
PC Matic for Android is available in Play Store. Install it like any other app. After installation, open it to view the log in screen. Here you need to sign in with the same email address and password used to purchase your PC Matic license on your computer. It will connect your paid licenses with this new Android device and allow you to enable protection and scanning.
Settings: Some minor customizations can be made to the PC Matic application to ensure it is working to suit your needs. Using the menu button on your phone, you can select Settings. Here you can adjust data usage, schedule scans, and whitelist applications. Data Usage: Select Update over Wi-Fi Only to conserve cellular data usage. Any signature updates required by the application will wait until it is connected via Wi-Fi.
Scheduling Scans: Selecting the Scan Interval allows you to choose between several options for your scan, including daily, every two days, weekly, and more. After selecting your scan interval, select Scan Type to choose an application scan or all files scan. Whitelisted Apps: View and add applications to your whitelist on your device.
In general, PC Matic is an good solution to protect you from most known malware, online threats, and virus attacks. Yes, it quite often blocks trusted applications, but you can feel safe with it. Anyways, you can test the service within 30 days and request a refund if you do not like how it works.