ZoneAlarm, which provides personal and corporate firewall software services, was developed by Zone Labs and was first released in 2000. In 2004, Zone Labs was acquired by Check Point Software Technologies, an Israeli company founded in 1993 and headquartered in Tel Aviv. Check Point currently has about 2,500 employees. The ZoneAlarm products include several tiers of protection to choose from: free firewall, firewall plus antivirus and internet security, and Extreme security, which covers all of the previous bases and then some. The distinguishing feature behind ZoneAlarm products is the ability to divide all network connections into two zones determined by each user: a trusted zone and a limited-access internet zone.

 

Rank Chart
Price
Security Quality
Our Score
#1
$24.99-44.99
7.3
#2
$39.99-69.99
6.3
#3
$39.99-69.99
5.8
#27
logo
$69.95-89.95
2.6

The Good

For starters, ZoneAlarm employs a powerful operating system and two-way firewalls to protect your network from intrusions and attacks. The firewall application control even shields your computer during startup, before most other security products have even loaded. Other features include password-encrypted data storage, spyware removal, online backup storage for things like tax returns and music, and PC tune-up/optimization options.

ZoneAlarm goes above and beyond in protecting your identity online. The “Do Not Track” private browsing feature erases cache, cookies, browsing history, and passwords to remove all of your online traces. The key-logger jamming feature keeps your keystrokes and click trails private to prevent people from discovering and stealing your pins and passwords. Finally, a subscription to Extreme security includes daily credit monitoring, fraud alerts, and even a free identity theft victim recovery service through phone counseling.

The Bad

ZoneAlarm is perfect for PC owners looking for powerful firewall protection, but there aren’t any products for Mac or mobile users at this time.

The Bottom Line

ZoneAlarm’s firewall and identity protection features make it stand out from the rest of the competition. This company is worth a look for customers looking to secure their PC from hackers.

Price (*subject to change)

  • Extreme Security $89.95 (1 year, 3 PCs)
  • Internet Security Suite $79.95 (1 year, 3 PCs)
  • PRO Firewall $59.95 (1 year, 3 PCs)
  • PRO Antivirus + Firewall $69.95 (1 year, 3 PCs)
  • PC Tune-up $29.95

Free trial offer

30-day free trials are available for all of ZoneAlarm’s paid computer protection subscriptions.

Security

  • Firewall – ZoneAlarm known for their advanced firewall that monitors programs for suspicious behavior and blocks out hackers by making your PC invisible online
  • Antivirus Scanner – Detects and removes viruses, spyware, Trojan horses, worms, bots, and root-kits
  • Email Protection – Filters out spam, scams, and potentially dangerous mail
  • Do Not Track – Erases your tracks while you browse and stops data-collecting companies from following you
  • Social Networking Protection – Scans your Facebook activity and alerts you if there are privacy concerns
  • Identity Protection – Guards your personal data
  • Parental Controls – Limits time spent online; blocks age-inappropriate websites and chat rooms
  • Key-logger/Screen-grabber Jamming – Hides passwords and other keystrokes that you type to prevent identity thieves from stealing them
  • Download Protection – Stops malicious downloads from infecting your PC

AV-Comparative/AV-Test

ZoneAlarm’s antivirus technology is AV-Test certified. In early 2013 it received a perfect usability score and a slightly below average file detection score.  In fact, the products’ file detection scores have actually declined over time.

Tune-up & Speed

ZoneAlarm’s Extreme package cleans, organizes, and streamlines computer processes to improve performance. This feature optimizes the registry by removing entries that slow your computer down, cuts down on time it takes to retrieve and create files, and frees up disk space. The system itself is light on resources so it doesn’t slow your computer down. The company also sells a separate PC Tune-up product that features a full registry defragmentation and backs up the files it removes during cleanup.

Time in Business

Check Point Software Technologies was founded in 1993 (21+ years in business).

Foreign

Check Point is headquartered in Tel Aviv, Israel and San Carlos, CA.

Customer Service

Free product users have access to ZoneAlarm’s knowledge base, discussion forum, and informational support center online. For technical support, paid subscribers have access to ZoneAlarm’s live chat, which is available during business hours. 

System Requirements

Microsoft® Windows® 8, 8.1:

  • 32-bit (2 GB RAM)/ 64-bit (4 GB RAM)
  • 2 GHz or faster processor
  • 250MB of available hard-disk space

Microsoft® Windows® 7:

  • 32-bit (2 GB RAM)/ 64-bit (4 GB RAM)
  • 2 GHz or faster processor
  • 250MB of available hard-disk space

Microsoft Windows Vista SP2 Business / Home Premium / Ultimate:

  • 32-bit / 64-bit, 2 GB RAM
  • 2 GHz or faster processor
  • 250MB of available hard-disk space

Microsoft Windows, XP SP2 or SP3 Home / Professional

  • 32-bit, 1GB RAM
  • 1 GHz or faster processor
  • 250MB of available hard-disk space

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