As those of you who follow my tweets @jonathanross will know, I was recently in the UK for a couple of weeks on a working holiday.
Some of that work was done with my [disclosure] brother’s company, First Contact and as such I spent some time in his office. One of the things that fascinated me was their test-bed PC.
First Contact is a Panda Security reseller amongst other things and they often use the test-bed PC for certain security related functions.
The mainstay in their toolbox is Panda Internet Security. Panda has a great product line of security software that from year to year, in response to user input has only gotten better.
One of the things I like the most about Panda Internet Security (yes I have it installed on both our computers at home) is the relatively small footprint compared to some of their competitors in terms of CPU and RAM usage. The exception to this is the few moments after an update when Panda devours whatever CPU / RAM is available to it however, this is minor as it does little to interfere with continued work and has yet to have any negative impact on other open applications.
If I were to suggest any change at all to their update module it would be to allow for either time scheduled checks for updates or to go the Adobe Acrobat path where the user can simply delay the upgrade until a more convenient time when the bandwidth/ resources are free to use. The obvious problem with this is that not upgrading malware definitions can leave your PC exposed to the most recently discovered malware. Other than this, Panda makes it eminently simple for the average user to install and use their security products without complex, tweaky settings leaving users befuddled or annoyed.
Putting performance aside, the true mark of a great security tool is does it catch the malware? There are no tools or methods that 100% protect your PC from infection short of never switching it on however, Panda scores high both in my experience (I have been using Panda since 2001) and Av-test.org published results of their comparative testing;
Their results show Panda has only two competitors in these tests: Kaspersky and Symantec. I have used recent versions of both and come the time to choose between renewing my license or moving to another product I’ll be staying with Panda.
Panda also led the way in Cloud based antivirus and yes, it is free for home users.
Okay, I guess you get it. I really like Panda’s product line but also I like their Social web presence and interaction with their customer-base. Panda has a blog, Twitter feeds for @pandatechsup – Panda Technical Support, the blog and for their company entity or brand @Panda_Security.
Anyway back to Manchester and sitting in the First Contact – I was sitting eating a scone and sipping my morning double espresso from the local Kosher Bakery and looking at the conclusion of a Panda scan on an infected PC. I had briefly been discussing ways of increasing their web presence and looking at their website when I had one of those random, caffeine inspired ideas.
"Wouldn’t it be great if you had a widget on your website that showed how many viruses/ malware you found and disinfected for you customers using Panda?"
It then occurred to me to simply tweet Panda and ask them if they had something like this. As I said Panda clearly believes in engagement and interaction with their customer-base: –
The truth is having a Panda branded widget that sits on a company web-site and gives metrics of successful disinfections is win-win for Panda and the reseller/ support entity. Apparently Panda has some smart folks running their brand and saw the benefit of this.
What next? Well if it was me (and having read a Gartner report on tech to watch out for in 2010-2011) I would look to see if Panda Cloud Antivirus is going to support Smart Phones and Cloud storage/ services like Windows Live / Skydrive or Google Apps / Documents.
So having once again shamelessly self-promoted an idea from the grey matter of Jonathan Ross I will bid you all a good evening. I need to make supper for the little guy, have another double espresso and see what the next idea will be.