eScan Internet Security Suite looks a bit dated, but it is still among the best firewall programs available. It performed well in tests run by third-party laboratories and also did a good job detecting possible threats on our own test computers. Its scans effectively detect and block rootkits, spyware, Trojans, viruses and worms – many of which infiltrate your system to spy on your internet activity.
The included Windows firewall monitors both inbound and outbound internet traffic, though you need to set up some of these filters yourself. It has real-time tracking, so you can see it monitoring and blocking as information enters your system from the internet. You can also adjust the settings for additional protection when you connect to a public network instead of your private home network.
In addition to a personal firewall, eScan has cloud protection. This makes it possible for the program to quickly discover and stop new threats, also known as zero-day threats. The software scans incoming and outgoing email messages and checks files on connected removeable drives such as USB flash drives. It also has an anti-spam tool that blocks unwanted emails before they hit your inbox. You have to manually activate most of these tools, so it takes a little more effort to get this firewall software up and running compared to other programs.
eScan includes parental controls and web filters, though they are basic compared to those in other firewall programs. For example, it doesn’t have extensive filter categories or time controls. However, it still provides good protection against unwanted content. You can use different settings for each member of your family and block content based on the user’s age.
The biggest problem we had while testing eScan is it created lag during virus and system scans. The delay was most noticeable when we worked online, downloaded files and played games. It may be tempting to suspend scans during normal activities, such as when you send emails or browse online, but that leaves your computer at risk for malware attacks. If you frequently watch videos or play games online, it would be better to invest in a firewall program that includes a gamer or silent mode that protects your computer without causing interruptions.
eScan is advanced enough to recognize and block internet threats – including viruses, bots and spyware – that hackers use to break into your network and steal sensitive information. However, you need to set up many of the firewall filters yourself, it causes lag and the program looks a little outdated.