MBAM’s specialty is hunting down newly created and released malware. They understand that most of these new threats are distributed through drive-by exploits or via hacked accounts on social networks, so this is what the product focuses on catching. Malwarebytes is known to detect Trojans, adware, and “ransomware”—which attempts to make the user pay a large fee to download a rogue antivirus software that installs even more malware (not fun)! MBAM also scans for “Potentially Unwanted Programs” (PUPs), their term for adware or software that isn’t necessarily harmful, but may slow down your system. When PUPs are found, they are not automatically removed, but you will be alerted so you can decide what to do about them.
MBAM is honest about their purpose and limitations. They advise customers to have an anti-virus software and good firewall along with their product, since Malwarebytes is designed to catch new threats, not old ones. But don’t worry about slowing your computer down with this anti-malware in addition to your anti-virus—it takes up less space on your hard drive than 10 digital music files.
MBAM hasn’t gone through testing by AV-Test or AV-Comparative because, according to the company, there are other independent testing labs that more accurately mimic real-world conditions faced by internet users. Therefore, MBAM has had their anti-malware product tested by CRDF Threat Center and MRG Effitas, which they say focus mostly on zero-day threats rather than older malware samples. Regardless, customers who rely on the more well-known IT labs will be disappointed that they can’t see how MBAM measures up.
This is minor, but we noticed that the product backup CD must be purchased separately, whereas most anti-viruses include a system backup as part of the package.
Price (subject to change)
- Anti-Malware Pro $29.95 (1 PC, lifetime license)
- Product back-up CD $9.95
- Anti-Malware Mobile (free)
- Secure Backup (online file scanning/storage) $29.95/year for 50 GB
Free trial offer
Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware Pro can be downloaded for a 14-day free trial.
- Anti-Malware/Anti-Spyware – Scans apps, memory cards, SD cards, and files for malware; identifies potentially unnecessary programs
- Internal and Remote Security – Locates, locks, or resets lost or stolen device; identifies security holes on device and suggests solutions
- App Manager – Identifies apps that are installed and running; enables custom whitelisting of approved apps
- Privacy Manager – Provides apps’ detailed access privileges by category, including location tracking, call monitoring, text message access, etc.
- Automatic Updates – Updates the protection database and schedules scans automatically
- Anti-Malware, Anti-Spyware – Detects malware and spyware often missed by anti-virus products
- Safe Browsing – Prevents access to malicious websites
- Social Network Protection – Scans for drive-by exploits and other threats via hacked accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and Skype
- Anti-Phishing/Identity Theft Protection – Blocks websites that might steal financial or other identifying information; blocks websites that install malware
- Anti-Rootkit – Removes even deeply embedded rootkits
- Malware Removal – Completely removes malware code
- Real-Time Scanning – Detects new threats with a continually updated database
Tune-up & Speed
Malwarebytes’ anti-malware scans for “PUPs”—potentially unwanted programs—and alerts you to these findings so you can decide whether or not you want to delete them. You can also download the company’s StartUpLite tool for Windows, which is supposed to speed up your computer’s start-up process. It disables or removes unnecessary entries, eliminating applications that slow your computer down when you first turn it on.
Time in Business
The company began in 2008 (6+ years in business).
MBAM’s headquarters are in San Jose, CA.
The corporate helpdesk provides access to customers’ case history, support tickets, and additional resources such as guides and release history updates. MBAM will respond to emails within one business day.
- 256 MB RAM
- 800 MHz CPU or faster
- 20 MB free hard disk space
- 800×600 or greater screen resolution
Operating Systems Supported
- Microsoft Windows XP
- Windows Vista
- Windows 7
- Windows 8
- Windows 8.1 (32-bit and 64-bit)
- Android 2.3 or later