Kaspersky Internet Security 2009 review
A welcome update to our favourite security suite
Review Date: 28 Jul 2008
Reviewed By: Darien Graham-Smith
Price when reviewed: (£18 inc VAT) for a one-PC, one-year licence
We may still be in the middle of summer, but those forward-looking woodpeckers at Kaspersky have already launched 2009 editions of their antivirus and internet security packages. We looked at Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2009 last week, and found it was as capable as ever at detecting malware - though the simpler interface has a few confusing niggles.
Since the Internet Security package uses the same anti-malware engine, that means it too provides simply excellent detection.
It also uses the same simple interface, with just a few extra options to control the additional features, which include a two-way firewall, web protection, a packet sniffer for monitoring network traffic, anti-phishing and spam measures and parental controls.
As with Kaspersky Anti-Virus, the basic functions are clear and clean, though it also suffers from a few options and controls which are illogical or obscure.
It's pointless to try to fully test a package such as this in isolation - threats are emerging and evolving all the time, and the only way to fairly compare security suites is to pit them simultaneously against a range of current threats.
But it's safe to say that Kaspersky Internet Security 2009 has an excellent pedigree. In our last security suite Labs, back when the Kaspersky was still using version numbers rather than years, its Internet Security 7 suite was the clear winner. It scored a clean sheet in defending us against web-based exploits, and impressed us with a highly intelligent firewall, immediately detecting our first attempt to "break into" our test system and automatically blocking further connections.
And the new version addresses one of our few complaints about Kaspersky Internet Security 7 - its RAM footprint of 240MB at startup has shrunk drastically to just 66MB. On the down side, it increased boot time on our test machine by 12 seconds, up from 8 seconds for last year's version. But that's a small price to pay.
Of course, Kaspersky isn't the only vendor that's been working on a new version: as 2009 draws nearer, the Russian contingent can certainly expect competition from the likes of Symantec, McAfee, Trend Micro and countless others. In our next Labs we'll be pitting their forthcoming packages against Kaspersky 2009, to see if any of them can usurp its crown.
But unless and until such a giant-killer arrives, we're happy to keep recommending Kaspersky as our internet security package of choice.
Author: Darien Graham-Smith
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