Webroot SecureAnywhere Internet Security Complete – Review

excellent
key review info
application features
  • Cloud-based anti-malware protection
  • (7 more, see all...)

SecureAnywhere Internet Security Complete is Webroot’s top-of-the-line product for consumers; it encompasses all the functionality the company has to offer for this category of customers in order to deliver easy to configure comprehensive protection without putting a heavy load on the system.

The product is regularly available for $79.99 / 58 EUR, but at the moment, for a limited time, the company is offering it with a discount, dropping the price to $51.99 / 38 EUR. This may seem a bit expensive at the beginning, but the one-year license can be used on a total of five devices running Windows, OS X, or Android.

In many cases, this is enough to protect all computing devices in the entire household.

All Webroot consumer products have the same installer, which is less than 1MB in size, and the same interface, the package-specific components being enabled through the license code inputted during the installation process.

Getting the package on the system is an easy task that does not require rebooting. Among the options available for this operation there is the possibility to rename the installed file name to a random string in order to bypass certain threats that may attempt the installation of a security product on an infected machine.

The entire procedure is swift and involves checking for compatibility problems, analyzing the programs already available to minimize alerts as well as performance optimization routines.

Just like in the case of Webroot SecureAnywhere Antivirus (reviewed here) the main application window shows details about the scan activity and results and remaining subscription days.

The components and their settings are available in drop-down menus in the right part of the main application window.

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Apart from the anti-malware module that is available in all SecureAnywhere products, Complete edition includes a password manager along with file backup and synchronization capabilities that come with 25GB of online storage.

Also included is a system optimization tool that can remove junk files to reclaim free space and eliminates browsing tracks in order to maintain privacy.

As far as detection of new threats is concerned, Webroot products work based mostly on the presumption of innocence; that is, they rely on behavior analysis to determine whether a program is malicious or not. Signatures are also used, but to a lesser extent.

The developer maintains a vast database of threats and legitimate programs and, based on this, the real-time shield determines if they stay or go. In the case of potential threats, users receive an alert and decide on the continuing action.

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With unknown pieces, the package relies on Infrared, a multi-layer defense technology that mixes reputation and behavior analysis together with the overall safety level of the system to emit warnings to the user.

During our initial tests, the malware detection rate was quite disappointing, as the score was just below 70%. However, launching about a third of the remaining threats proved the product’s ability to recognize the samples and increased the percentage drastically, to more than 80%.

Besides running ultra-fast scans (a few minutes at most), one of the advantages of processing the data in the cloud is that impact on system performance is extremely low. In the case of SecureAnywhere, complete RAM usage while scanning was under 20MB and the CPU (i5 at 3.1GHz) barely flinched.

As usual, SecureAnywhere scan engine is persistent and won’t stop until threats are no longer detected, and in our case this routine occurred multiple times.

Additional shields prevent rootkit installation, prevent downloading known threats (database is over 200 million URLs large), and monitor removable devices. Since online connection is required to get the most out of Webroot SecureAnywhere, the developer also included an offline shield to maintain security when offline.

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Backup and synchronization capabilities come with 25GB of free space in the cloud, which can be used for storing important files with immediate access to them from an Internet connected device.

We had a little trouble working with this component because we could not log into the service from the start.

On Windows 8 we failed at the beginning to reach backup and sync management options and were informed that the username or password was incorrect. After re-installing the package and restarting the test machine we were able to gain access.

On Windows 7, the behavior was different and immediately after typing in the credentials we were sent to the log in screen creating a continuous loop that required re-filling the username and password fields.

After multiple attempts we managed to access the settings area and create folders for synchronization with a local source or for backup purposes.

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All the data in the cloud can be accessed through the web console (my.webrootanywhere.com), where management of all devices is also offered.

Uploading files is done seamlessly in the background and the online interface is updated quite quickly. The storage folders assigned for each device protected by Webroot SecureAnwhere is listed and new ones can be created.

The list of details accessible from the online app comprises all the activity in the cloud, complete with the action type, file affected, time and date, and the device that initiated the operation.

The online console provides useful information about malicious files detected on SecureAnywhere protected computers and allows sending commands for running a new scan and quarantining threats, optimizing the device or restarting, shutting down, and locking the system.

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In the case of the Android application, there are options for locating the device and protecting the information on it by locking or, as a last resort, wiping it.

The password managing utility has been licensed from LastPass, and although it is not quite on par with the original, it stores credentials and web forms, automatically fills in the details, and is equipped with a password generator.

All the data is synchronized across all supported devices and it is readily available in the web app as well.

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Webroot SecureAnywhere Complete comes pre-configured with the necessary settings for the average and beginner user; furthermore, Infrared’s risk assessment adjusts the protection modules automatically in order to provide security tailored for each user’s needs.

However, more seasoned users have a chance at tweaking things up by scheduling scan or optimization jobs, customizing their coverage, or adjusting warning levels through enabling automatic actions.

In the case of the built-in performance boosting utility, the list of options includes refers to the areas and items that should be removed in the process.

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Some folders containing temporary files, Recycle Bin, Run, and search history and cache data from web browsers are selected by default; but other areas, such as clipboard contents, Start Menu history, IE cookies, Windows download folder, autocomplete form details, or data gathered by other applications can also be included.

Another utility is Secure Erase, which is designed to delete data and reduce the risk of recovering it with dedicated software. There are three levels available with the highest running seven overwrite jobs with random data and cleaning the free space around files.

Just like the Antivirus edition, the Complete version integrates the necessary tools for manually uncovering threats and removing them.

It enables viewing the currently running processes and allow, block or put their activity under supervision to determine the legitimacy of their actions; the sandboxing function permits executing suspicious files in an isolated environment that limits the ability to make changes to the system.

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The version for Android (SecureAnywhere Mobile Complete) strengthens the security of your phone by analyzing the current configuration and warning about unsafe choice that are in effect.

It can scan for threats and offers details about apps that might pose a security risk. Furthermore, there are call and SMS blocking capabilities and it can determine messages with links to malicious addresses. Activating the lost device protection ensures that the commands from the web console are received and executed.

Access to files that have been uploaded in the Webroot cloud and password management is done through two separate apps that install with the suite, Backup&Sync and SecureWeb web browser.

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The Good

Easy to install and remove from the system. It comes pre-configured and adjusts protection levels according to user behavior and their proneness to security risks.

Apart from the security features the suite also provides backup and synchronization options, password management, file shredding and junk files removal capabilities.

The Bad

We had trouble accessing the backup and synchronization options on both Windows 7 and 8. Commands (lock, system cleaner and scan) sent from the web console to another computer were carried out with a huge delay (in our case this took more than 20 minutes). There is no parental control module.

The Truth

Webroot SecureAnywhere Complete is quite different from the regular Internet Security suites on the market; it is easy to install, and in many cases it does not require any adjustments and the stress on system resources is minimum.

The suite is tiny but, combined with the extra services it connects to, there is a lot of punch packed under the hood and, despite full automation, advanced users have plenty of tools to help them analyze suspicious files on their own.

NOTE: We’re giving away a total of 20 licenses for Webroot SecureAnywhere Complete in exchange for comments posted on the campaign announcement page (comments in the section below are not eligible for the campaign).

The opportunity expires on December 29, 16:00 UTC (8:00 PT) so make sure you post your lines by then and please provide a valid contact email address.
user interface 5
features 5
ease of use 4
pricing / value 4


final rating 5
Editor's review
excellent
 
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