Update: This program has now been replaced with BitDefender Total Security 2012.
Next up in my ongoing series of reviews on internet security programs is the latest offering from a Romanian vendor is BitDefender Internet Security 2011. I was very impressed with their BitDefender Antivirus 2011 product when I reviewed that a few months ago so lets see how they do this time around…
Downloading and installing BitDefender Internet Security 2011 is a fairly quick and easy task. You will need to sign up for an account though which allows you to access their online services such as product updates, parental controls and product support.
During installation the program will advise you to remove any existing security products from your system (see why that is such a good idea) and will help you do just that. Once that area is resolved the program will then run a preliminary scan on your system to ensure that there are no existing issues that could hamper it’s installation and operation. After that, BitDefender Internet Security 2011 then advised me that the Windows firewall and Defender services were being disabled.
Next up, I had a choice of jumping straight into the program or watching a video presentation, just like the one below –
After watching that I was then into the program where the fast option was to change the scanning options, including the timing for a scheduled scan, as see in the screenshot below –
Overall, the process for getting the program installed and up and running is very slick and BitDefender cover everything that needs to be done in an informative way that lets the user know what is happening to their system. Good stuff so far!
Ease of Use
Once you have the program installed you will see that it has a very clear interface, as can be seen from the screenshot below this paragraph. All the main functions are laid out on the main page and you can access everything that is important, such as scanning and the firewall, with just one click. From the dashboard you can configure your settings (you can see the link right middle in the image below) and this allows you to choose which icons are visible, thereby granting easy access to the features you want to use and hiding those that may be less important to you.
BitDefender Internet Security 2011 is packed with all the usual features you would expect to see in a program such as this as well as a few extra goodies that don’t always feature in competitive products. Some of the highlights are –
- privacy control
- disk defragmenter
- registry cleaner
- file storage
- network protection
- encryption for instant messaging
I would hope that the main features above do not require any explanation – if they do then you need to read my site more often – but a couple of the others may not be so familiar to you.
If you delve into the Encryption section of this program then you will find that it is already set up for Windows Live Messenger and Yahoo! Messenger. If you use either of these services then your messages will be encrypted by default. If you desire you can remove the encryption from some chat sessions on a per friend basis.
Under Privacy Control you can enable a feature called Identity Control. I think this is a really useful part of the program that can help protect you from the perils of identity theft. What you can do with it is you can enter certain values that you want the program to look out for, i.e. your social security number or credit card number. Should you or anyone else who uses the computer then try to enter one of these values into an email, for example, then you will be given an alert which should remind you not to do it!
BitDefender Internet Security 2011 has reasonably average demands in terms of it’s minimum system requirements –
- Windows XP Service Pack 2 / Vista / 7
- 512 MB RAM for Windows XP / 1GB RAM for Vista and 7
- 800 Mhz processor
- 450 MB of hard drive space
- Internet connection
Having run the program on my aging laptop which isn’t hugely better than those minimum specs I am very pleased indeed as it was very smooth and I noticed no slow down during scans. System resource usage was low and so I was able to multitask whilst the program was operating.
I’m really impressed with BitDefender Internet Security 2011. It is easy to get to grips with due to it’s nice clean interface but there are plenty of options packed in for the computer savvy users too. The program runs smoothly and has many interesting features such as Identity Control which I mentioned earlier. The core features are top draw as well as I had already noted when I looked at the stand alone antivirus program earlier in the year.
Overall, this is a good program for people of many different skill levels from the novice to the far more experienced computer and internet user.
While you are here please check out my other 2012 Internet Security reviews.