Hi, Leo. I’m running Windows XP on an older HP desktop. I have Microsoft
Security Essentials scanning each Monday. I scanned with Malwarebytes on
Wednesday and scanned with Spybot on Fridays. Now, I’ve no indication that I
have any malware on my machine. Am I being overly paranoid doing three scans a
week? Would I get the same level of protection having Security Essentials do
the Monday scan and not do the others unless Security Essentials finds a
problem? Thanks for your help.
Scanning for malware
I don’t think you’re being paranoid.
What I end up doing myself is I run Microsoft Security Essentials. I have it scan nightly; not once a week but nightly. And then I pull out other tools as necessary if I ever discover a problem, which as it turns out, I don’t discover very often.
Are three scans too much?
Now on the other hand, is what you’re doing too much? No. It’s fine, and it’s a fine thing to do.
The thing that we always tend to tell people to avoid is to have those programs installed and running in real time. It’s the “real time” component of different anti-malware tools that can often conflict with each other.
But doing stand-alone scans like this? You can run as many of them as you like – and yes, they will catch some other things.
Malwarebytes is a good one because it does often catch things that other tools don’t. So, I’ve got no problem with what you’re doing.
I don’t think it’s overkill… it’s a little bit on the strong end of the spectrum. It’s not what I do.
In your case, if you missed the Malwarebytes scan or the Spybot scan one week, I wouldn’t be concerned about it in the least. But I think what you’re doing is fine. The most important thing is that you’re doing something and the most important thing is that you’re doing something on a schedule.
If I were to tweak anything about what you’ve described. I would have Microsoft Security Essentials automatically scan every night instead of once a week.
(Transcript lightly edited for readability.)