What is going on with MBAM (Malwarebytes AntiMalware)?
If you recently updated Malwarebytes you may have received the next-generation version, and wow – does it look different. And it installs the Premium Trial by default so you’ll be constantly nagged to “upgrade” (read: purchase). What do I do now?
MBAM 3.0 (or more precisely now, MB – since they dropped the “AntiMalware” part of the name) is now an antivirusantimalware security suite instead of just a malware removal tool. According to the MB web site, the new version is built to replace or run alongside your existing security software. However, if you’d like constant protection, as with most antivirus suites, you’ll need to pay for Malwarebytes. It’s your call, but I prefer using the built-in (on Windows 10 and 8/8.1) Defender for antivirus, and additional free tools when necessary to scan for and remove malware and potentially unwanted programs (PUPs). On Windows 7 I’m sticking with the free Microsoft Security Essentials and Malwarebytes and SuperAntiSpyware.
What to do about that MB Premium Trial, now that it’s on your computer? Don’t panic; a few clicks in the Settings and you’re back to Free, and a decent malware seeker and destroyer. Here’s how:
1. Close this window.
2. Click Protection settings
3. Click the My Account tab, then click Deactivate Premium Trial
4. Click the Application tab. Deselect (uncheck) any boxes you like, but be sure to uncheck the last one.
5. Click the Protection tab, then check Scan for rootkits.
6. Click Dashboard on the left, and let Malwarebytes update and run a scan. Remove anything it finds.
You can update and run Malwarebytes anytime you like. It's a good idea to run monthly, anyway.
Malwarebytes is still a great tool, but like most software the developers constantly strive to improve. At first glance it's now harder to configure, increases the demands for upgrades, and takes longer to scan.
Malwarebytes now claims to protect against ransomware attacks (paid version only), which would be a great thing. However, their first ad compaign claims that 40% of businesses have already been attacked by ransomware and that seems like an outlandish claim with no obvious source. Skepticism isn't something a security company should want to invite upon itself. The first, best protection against ransomware is keeping current backups of any data you don't want to lose.
If you have questions about configuring or using Malwarebytes as part of your computer security, please ask.
Cathy Contant 315-573-4905 firstname.lastname@example.org