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Webroot Internet Security Essentials review


A solid, usable package with online backup to boot.

Review Date: 13 Feb 2009

Reviewed By: Darien Graham-Smith

Price when reviewed: £34 (£39 inc VAT)

Overall Rating
5 stars out of 6

Value for Money
5 stars out of 6

Ease of Use
4 stars out of 6

Webroot Internet Security Essentials - or WISE, as it cleverly abbreviates - is the company's first home security suite due for release in January 2009, but it feels like a mature product. The interface is clean and sensibly laid-out, and we found its green and grey colour scheme calming. It's a shame, then, that getting to the front-end after booting was such a drawn-out affair, with nearly 30 seconds of CPU activity while WISE was initialising.

Still, our impressions improved once the package was up and running. In our malware detection test, WISE scored 88% - equal with Kaspersky, although slightly behind the frontrunners. Its 57% score in the web test was respectable too, placing it joint fourth along with BitDefender. And while it didn't make our test PC wholly invisible or invulnerable to network attack, it did lock it down so that only one serious vulnerability could be detected.

The suite has a few rough edges: we don't expect a firewall to ask whether Internet Explorer can access the internet. And when a new version of the program became available, it required us to re-enter our licence key - which it helpfully provided in the same requester. We were also nonplussed by its offer to add an Ask toolbar to our browser: we don't expect pushy advertising like this in commercial software.

The price isn't bad, though, considering you get a backup module with 2GB of online storage - not enough for a media collection, but ample for the important files. In all, it's a well-conceived, functional package - not a top performer in every area, but if you have a fetish for green and grey you could do a lot worse.

Author: Darien Graham-Smith

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User comments


I purchaed a 3 licence offer for around £20 in February 2010! After years of ZA I wanted something different and having looked around settled for this one. Easy interface, auto updates, smooth, minimal CPU usage and works perfectly with me running Malwarebytes occasionally 'just to check'. All in all I'll give it 9.5 out of 10 and well deserved.

By photomanlondon on 29 Apr 2010

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