Please Note: This product is now integrated into Kaspersky Internet Security. For a side-by-side comparison of currently available firewall software products vist:
Kaspersky Anti-Hacker by Kaspersky Labs eliminates common firewall woes with their anti-hacker control panel. Though the design is simple, this firewall lets experienced users fine-tune protection settings.
At first glance, Kaspersky Anti-Hacker doesn't seem customizable, but once you jump in and learn the program you'll find the right tools. Kaspersky Anti-Hacker is powerful and the help is detailed, but the firewall takes time to master.
Kaspersky Anti-Hacker offers you application (software) control and filtering control (you make rules to sort information going in and out of your computer). Kaspersky Anti-Hacker lets you customize port (ports are computer doorways) and other settings for software. If you want to adjust a port rule-for example, you want to change which port Microsoft Messenger uses-you can specify the port (or port range) then add your preferences. You can opt to receive a notice when software tries to violate your rule, or you can opt to have this noted in the log. The message will list the application name, address and ports.
Kaspersky Anti-Hacker's basic features are simple. Once you try to customize settings, though, you'll realize the task is complex and you'll need to spend time in the help section.
To check an application rule setting feature, we adapted rules for some software. The long rule conditions list of would be difficult for a novice computer user to sort through and understand. With all the choices, a novice would most likely make mistakes.
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With some work, Kaspersky Anti-Hacker has potential to compete with top firewall products. What it lacks are features to safeguard data completely and the ability to control adware cookies. Without these measures, you'll collect all kinds of nasty garbage—even subtle attacks-after spending just a few hours online.
To discover today's best security options, head to our best antivirus guide.