Many new and sophisticated threats are spreading fast online that can infect your computer. IBM calls the Internet as ‘Wild West’. Risks have increased exponentially. According to its X-Force 2009 Mid-Year Trend and Risk Report, the problem is no longer limited to virus or malicious domains or suspicious websites. There has been increase in the presence of malicious content on trusted sites, including popular search engines, blogs, bulletin boards, personal web sites, mainstream news sites and online magazines.
However, the pricing trends are changing in India as some new PC security software companies like Kaspersky and old horse Norton offering PC security suites at reasonable prices.
The following is a brief description about these Internet security suites-
Kaspersky Internet Security 2010
Kaspersky provides more than what you expect from a security suite for the price you pay. Some of its salient features are:
- It has a unique safe run mode for potential threatening applications or websites
- It gives full picture on programs installed on your system through
- It warns you about infected or unsafe websites
- It has a secure virtual keyboard to protect from identity theft
Kaspersky priced this security suit at just Rs.350. A PC user who buys his PC at around Rs.20,000 should not hesitate to buy this software to get protected from Internet threats. This is very cheap compared to its MRP in USA i.e Rs.2746 ($ 59.95).
Norton Internet Security 2010
Norton is the best overall security suite available in the market. It is even better than Kaspersky and is a bit expensive. Some of its major features are:
- It provides up-to-the minute protection by updating every 5 to 15 minutes
- It filters unwanted email
- It blocks phishing websites and also authenticates trusted sites
- It prevents hackers from spying and stealing the information as you type
Norton Internet Security 2010 is priced at Rs.950. This is very cheap compared to its MRP in USA i.e around Rs.1557 ($33.99).
If you are looking just for an anti-virus consider ‘Bit Defender anti-virus 2009’, which costs only Rs.200 and is reasonably good.
In order to protect yourself from these threats online, you also need to have original OS. But, the pricing of the OS is too high to purchase a genuine copy. The price of the Windows genuine OS software almost equals to a branded LCD monitor. In India, a majority of the PC buyers buy assembled systems rather than branded systems. They then get pirated OS and software without much hassle since many local technicians take care of this part.
Pragmatic pricing of Operating Systems: Needed for Safer Internet in India
Though the GDP and PPP in India are far less than US, there is not much difference in the prices of the PC software. The concept of PPP is to equalize the purchasing power of two currencies. For example, the price for a normal hair cut in India costs around Rs.40 but the same thing in U.S costs around $ 8, nearly Rs.366. This shows that we can get a lot better items at low cost in India. But PPP is not working with some companies like Microsoft in India.
The professional version of Windows 7 is available for Rs.12,116 ($264.49) in US, and the same in India costs around Rs.7,900 in the local market. It should be somewhere around Rs.1,500 if adjusted according to PPP. To buy a genuine operating system it costs nearly Rs.8,000 for a typical PC buyer. This is the reason why many home users in India opt for pirated versions and become vulnerable to attacks.
Though most of the PC users in India know the dire consequences of pirated software, many of them are unable to use the genuine versions as they are over priced. However, the above-mentioned PC security software companies are providing the best Internet security software in their class at a reasonable price. ‘Kaspersky Internet Security 2010’ costs around Rs.2746 in US, but it is available just for Rs.350 in India. ‘Norton Internet Security 2010’ costs around Rs.1557 in US, which costs only Rs.950 in India. The pragmatic pricing of these brands is appreciable. These kinds of initiatives encourage at least the new generation users to buy genuine software. Industry leaders like Microsoft should do a lot of rethinking on their pricing in India. After all, this is just to make Internet safer to browse.