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Comodo Internet Security Complete…


Start with the all-important protection against malware, add a firewall and some other useful security features, and, voilà, you’ve got a security suite! Comodo Internet Security Complete comes with the expected antivirus and firewall, as well as cloud backup, a VPN, and more. However, the antivirus fared poorly in testing, and the VPN and cloud backup features simply do not work. There are better security suites for your money.

The pricing doesn’t give you any clue that this isn’t a top-shelf product. At $89.99 for three devices, it costs more than many competitors. Bitdefender and Kaspersky Internet Security give you three entry-level security suite licenses for $10 less. Five top-tier Bitdefender suite licenses cost the same as Comodo’s three, and five licenses for Kaspersky’s top-of-the line suite cost $99.99 per year, which is not much more. Norton 360 Deluxe also gives you five licenses for $99.99, which includes a working cloud backup system and a VPN without the bandwidth cap that Comodo imposes. From the start, it’s not a bargain.

The product looks almost identical to Comodo’s free antivirus, and neither has changed appreciably since my last review two years ago. A big rectangular panel represents your security status—green for good, red or yellow if anything needs fixing. Four smaller panels give you quick access to run an antivirus scan, release a program from the containment sandbox, check for updates, or open the Secure Shopping Environment. The only difference is that, in the antivirus, that last panel instead launches Comodo’s virtual desktop.

Comodo Internet Security Complete Main

Comodo also offers a free security suite called Comodo Internet Security Premium. Yes, despite “premium” in the name, it’s free. This suite does include antivirus and firewall protection, along with Secure Shopping, but you don’t get the Cloud Backup or VPN features. You also don’t get the VIP support and warranty offered to paying customers.

Features Shared With Antivirus

Naturally, when you pay for this suite you get every feature that comes for free in Comodo Antivirus. Please read that review for my complete findings; I’ll summarize below.

The independent antivirus testing labs put products through rigorous testing and regularly report their results. I follow four such labs, but only one of them includes Comodo in its latest reports. Products can earn up to 18 points from AV-Test Institute; Comodo scored 16.5. That’s not bad, but F-Secure, McAfee, and Norton took the full 18 points in the latest test.

In contrast with Comodo’s sparse results, eight products I follow show up in reports from all four labs. Among these were Avira, Bitdefender, ESET Internet Security, and Kaspersky, which all earned an aggregate lab score of 9.6 or better, out of a maximum of 10.

Comodo offers a variety of antivirus scan choices in addition to the typical full scan, quick scan, and custom scan. You can scan to see what trust level Comodo’s database assigns to your files. If tough malware resists cleanup, you can run the cleanup-only Comodo Cleaning Essentials. And if even that can’t root out a persistent infestation, you can burn a Rescue Disk on a clean system. The Rescue Disk boots into an alternate operating system, leaving Windows-centric malware powerless.

In my hands-on malware protection test, Comodo scored 9.1 of 10 possible points; that’s decent, but many competitors have done better. On a sour note, Comodo didn’t recognize the five ransomware samples I modified by hand. In theory, its behavior-based detection should have foiled them, recognized or not, but in practice most of them slipped past Comodo’s protection.

The Comodo Online Security browser extension should keep your browser away from dangerous and fraudulent websites, but it didn’t perform well in testing. It didn’t block access to any malware-hosting URLs, and only eliminated 56 percent of the malware downloaded from those URLs. Bitdefender and Trend Micro Internet Security, by contrast, defended against 99 percent of the malicious URLs.

Comodo performed even worse in my phishing protection test, detecting just 10 percent of the fresh, real-world fraudulent webpages. The phishing protection built into Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer vastly outperformed Comodo. At the other end of the scale, McAfee Internet Security and Kaspersky scored 100 percent in their latest phishing tests.

By default, Comodo’s containment system, previously called Sandbox, runs unknown programs in a kind of virtual machine, so they can’t do any permanent damage. In testing, it didn’t help at all against hand-modified ransomware samples.

The free antivirus shares several other features with the suite reviewed here. Comodo Dragon is a Chromium-based browser with several useful extensions built in. The Virtual Desktop isolates your programs from the possibly compromised regular desktop, and it emphasizes using Comodo Dragon for browsing. A Host Intrusion Prevention System (HIPS) limits activities by unknown programs, but it doesn’t protect against exploit attacks the way HIPS does in some products. Advanced tools let you analyze running processes and, if necessary, terminate them in various ways.

Impressive Warranty

One thing that distinguishes Comodo’s paid products from the free ones is an impressive warranty. Comodo promises that if malware gets past the product’s protection, support agents will spend as much time as it takes to remotely remediate the problem. In the unlikely event that the malware comes out victorious, the company will reimburse up to $500 in repair costs. Norton, Check Point ZoneAlarm Extreme Security, and McAfee offer similar guarantees, though they offer a refund, not reimbursement for repairs.

Don’t imagine, though, that you can install Comodo on some nasty, grunged-up PC and then immediately demand reimbursement. Quite reasonably, Comodo insists that you make sure the product is configured correctly, for starters. During the process of activating this warranty, it checks that you have Antivirus, Firewall, Auto-Containment, HIPS, and VirusScope enabled, and that Comodo is configured to log all activity. To finalize the activation process, you must run a full scan and deal with any found threats. After that, once the computer is in a known clean state, the warranty kicks in.

Comodo Internet Security Complete Warranty

While Comodo doesn’t offer anything like the identity-theft features of Symantec Norton 360 with LifeLock Select

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