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G Data 2016 Review: A Secure Anti-Virus Protection Provider

By: Danielle P
G Data Review

G DATA prides itself on providing "Simply Secure" antivirus and privacy protection, so you can feel safe no matter what.

For excellent prices and solid products with top performance, G DATA is a good anti-virus software.

You can expect a full anti-virus engine; however, there is no anti-ransomware protection, which in this day and age is very necessary to have.


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Read my G DATA review to learn more about this well-established antivirus provider.

Anti-virus provider - G DATA

G DATA Antivirus provider

Pros and Cons

Pros:
  • Less expensive
  • Full-featured firewall
  • 2 Antivirus engines - two layers of virus protection
Cons:
  • No quick scan
  • No ransomware protection
  • Influences PC performance
  • Parental Control has too many loopholes

Money-Back Guarantee

Like most of the other antivirus providers, G DATA offers a 30-day free trial period if you want to test out the products, as well as a 30-day money-back guarantee for those who opt in from the start but then change their minds.

During this trial period, you can convert your software to a full version whenever you want online. 

Moreover:

You don't need to uninstall the trial version before upgrading.

History of G DATA

It all started in Bochum, Germany in 1985 when the idea was born to provide top IT security with G DATA Software Inc.'s first antivirus program, with the goal to spread the network to the U.S. and Canada.

G DATA Software AG has developed antivirus security solutions for home users, small and medium businesses, enterprises, educational institutions, and governments ever since, making it one of the leading European security software providers with a global presence in over 90 countries. 

G DATA Product Comparison

From the outset, it is important to note that there is no ransomware protection, but besides that, G DATA packages offer a full antivirus engine.

In light of the above, the Antivirus package does not include all the antivirus features, namely: the parental control and firewall, which for me, makes this product inadequate seeing that other products from other providers in the same price range and categories offer more features.

G DATA products run smoothly on all Windows version 7-10, with separate products for Mac. The business products cater for a range of devices and for different needs.

There is around the clock customer service which is fantastic and not so easy to come by for all the antivirus providers, so G DATA gets a one-up on that. However, there is no live chat.

Your best bet is to probably have a look at the Total Security package because of its great price and inclusion of all features.

Let's have a look together:

Comparison Table of G DATA Home Products

G DATA Comparison Table of Home Products

My Recommendation

I recommend getting the Total Security package. You will enjoy all the features and only for a few more dollars compared to the Internet Security. I don't think that the Antivirus package is worth it because it doesn't include the basics, like firewall and parental control.


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Business Solutions

G DATA provides 3 packages and other tools for businesses and enterprises.

Antivirus Business is the most basic one, followed by Client Security Business, and then Endpoint Protection Business. These also come with a 30-day trial period and money-back guarantee.

The business software is built on proactive and reactive protective measures in order to prevent cyber criminals from jeopardizing your systems in any way. All the packages offer protections against viruses, trojans, and worms, with optional modules of a Linux web and mail security gateway, exchange mail security, patch management, and more.


TRY ENDPOINT PROTECTION


G-Data's Key Features

Here are the main features that all the packages include:

CloseGap Double Scanning Engine

Full scan in process- G DATA

G DATA's full scan in process

This scanner works through a double channel in order to ensure double protection. 

If a virus sneaks its way through the first engine, the second one works closely with the first one to eliminate any leftover threats before they infect your PC or device.

So you get top-notch protection, but the system speed is compromised with a slower performance speed despite CloseGap's ability to prevent this.

Full scan finished - G DATA

Full scan finished on G DATA

I ran the scans on my own system - 4GB RAM, Intel Core i7 CPU 3.20 GHz - and these are the results:

Firstly, there is no quick scan on G DATA, which is quite a disappointment given the advanced double scanner mechanism.

The time for the full scan to run took 10:40 minutes.

Independent Test Scores by AV-Test 

During March and April 2016, AV-Test ran their routine test on many antivirus software providers and G DATA was one of them.

In terms of the final scores, G DATA came out just above average, especially for the performance score.

These were the results:

AV-Test results for G DATA

G DATA AV-Test results

G DATA's software seems to take its toll on the daily usage computer speed, while malware protection and picking up on false positives provide decent results. In saying that, there were other providers with much better results overall, so this might influence your decision, should you consider to use G DATA's antivirus products.

The results surprised me somewhat seeing that G DATA has received lots of awards, including from AV-Test themselves.

FatSecurity.com Home User Test

I ran a home user test even though AV-Test is pretty spot on. I just feel it's better to experience things hands-on when writing a review; something I do to compare the antivirus providers.

We test 3 states of the computer's resources:

  1.  Idle with no antivirus installation
  2.  An idle instance of G DATA running in the background
  3. While G DATA was running a full scan

The results of the CPU, hard disk and RAM in all 3 states are:

G DATA's System Performance Impact

System performance impact by G DATA

Idle - Windows 10 without G DATA

Windows 10 without G DATA - Idle

G DATA idle installation CPU and memory usage

CPU and memory usage by an idle G DATA installation

G DATA during a full scan - CPU and memory usage

CPU and memory usage by G DATA during a full scan

So, our real life score for the real life home user test I conducted is 67%.

Anti Malware Software

G DATA offers a wide-range of specs as an all-inclusive anti-malware protection product.

The only protection it doesn't offer is anti-ransomware which is quite a drawback.

The malware features include protection and privacy, with each package offering either slightly less or more, but all of them include the:

And some of the privacy features to expect are:

The anti-virus protection works according to a behavioral-based detection platform to track suspicious behavior, websites, and download with Cloud connection and proactive detection.

Full-Featured Firewall

G DATA's full-featured firewall total protection

Full-featured firewall Total Protection on G DATA

G DATA provides an effective firewall which protects your files from outside attacks by placing them in stealth mode.

Another advantage of this tool is that it also deflected web-based tests and other port scans.

G DATA's firewall is set to autopilot by default which means it operates in the background without any popups and disturbances. 

If you choose to turn autopilot mode off, then a popup notification will appear when any program on your device attempts to access the Internet. You can choose to access or block these websites with four large buttons.

Full-featured firewall settings on G DATA

G DATA's full-featured firewall settings

You may be wondering why you need a firewall when Windows has a built-in one, in turn providing a fully patched system?

Well my answer is that it is always great to be aware of a website that is attempting to attack your device or exploit your operating system or apps for any vulnerabilities with a solid firewall that picks up on network traffic all the time.

The one drawback I picked up on is an issue after a reboot of the device, which leads to G DATA's performance being crippled owing to some values in the operating system being left open to exposure. 

Note: The firewall protection is not included in the Antivirus basic package.

Anit-Phishing and Spam Filter

G DATA's anti-phishing spam filter

Anti-phishing spam filter on G DATA

Spam filters are always necessary to combat the waging war of phishing sites and spammers.

The spam filter, which scans incoming POP3 mail is built to integrate with Microsoft Outlook, but other email clients should work if you create message rules in which you stipulate that messages with phishing or spam in the subject line must be sent straight to the spam folder.

The download time of the spam filter is a little on the slow side; however, email downloads usually run in the background, so you shouldn't really notice a system slowdown.

My overall impression of the filter is that it is good, but it needs a few tweaks. 

What is really good about it is that my personal or bulk personal emails were not thrown into the spam folder. The issue is that it misses some of the spam mail.

Lastly, the filter is riddled with lots of configuration options with default values - these shouldn't be altered. 

The one filter that you can play around with is the language filter; this filter lets you choose languages that should be sent to spam mail if you receive emails in them.

Parental Control

Parental control on G DATA

G DATA's parental control

The parental control is pretty standard for G DATA with a few loopholes for those shrewd kids of yours.

The problem with the tool is that it works based on keyword search, and this means that lots of harmless pages and URLs are blocked if they have a specific keyword, whereas a porn site might not be blocked because it doesn't contain the keyword. The system also can't track HTTPS connections or track proxy sites which appear secure with anonymous techniques.

Blocked site via parental control on G DATA

G DATA's blocked site configuration with parental control

Another aspect of the parental control is the time limit settings for overall computer and internet usage for each child's Windows user account. Parents can set limits on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis; however, there is a catch in that the system has no sanity check when it comes to time. You can set one day to 24 hours off limit, but also 12 hours for the whole month. These kinds of things are a bit illogical.

Parental control settings on G DATA

G DATA's parental control settings

The other catch is that if one of your kids has Admin Access, he/she can adjust the date/time settings which fools the time limit schedules or turn off parental control altogether.

Make sure you have a password in place for any configuration settings!

Additional Features

USB Antivirus Scanner

This is a two-dimensional defense tool:

First is to monitor who can use USB sticks, burners and other devices on your PC. 

Second is the USB KEYBOARD GUARD which protects your PCs against USBs that mask themselves as keyboards and that contain viruses.

Password Manager

There is no need for little notes or cheat sheets anymore with this all-in-one password manager.

You can save all your passwords, pin codes and email accounts in one place by integrating this tool to your browser, so that you can fill in all the data automatically.

Integrated Tuner

This PC tune up is always useful to clean out unused registry and cache entries, old code indexes, and other ballast.

Your PC will run smoother and the overall experience of the software will be more attuned to its purpose of detecting malware.

Browser Cleaner

The browser cleaner comes with the Total Security package and it blocks tedious toolbars and add-on from Firefox, Chrome, and Internet Explorer.

G DATA for Mac

This Antivirus for Mac package is designed for Intel-based Apple Mac with Mac OS X Lion (10.7.5) or above.

This is the same package as the basic Antivirus for PC, but it is adapted to protect against viruses and phishing for a Mac with OS X.

The protection works quietly in the background keeping an eye on the system files' changes and behavior without affecting the system performance.

What's more!

Despite the fact that this product is designed for Mac, the protection is also against Windows viruses so that your Apple isn't the gateway for Windows PC infections.


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G DATA for Android

The Internet Security package has been designed to protect Android devices including smartphones and tablets.

You can rest assured that your device will have a combat system in place to detect and wipe out intrusive applications, malware, web protection, and phishing attacks with latest cloud technology. 

Advanced and specialized, the product includes and SMS and call filter, password protected apps, protected contacts, security for your children, and a configurable emergency button - this is a widget to send an immediate message with your location or to make a call to one of your contacts.

If you lose your device, you can track it or chose to block access and wipe the content off the device remotely. Another option available is to lock the device if the SIM card is changed.

The interface is a breeze to navigate so that you don't experience any complications when using your device.


TRY ANDROID INTERNET SECURITY


User Friendly Interface

G DATA's motto is "simply secure" and this comes to fruition with its simple user interface.

The dashboard brings out most of the functions and elements to the front, so you shouldn't have any issues navigating yourself around the software's interface.

Easy interface on G DATA

G DATA's easy interface

The home screen is designed for your convenience with a display of a quick overview of your system's status, and if there are any detected problems with buttons for you to attend to them right away.

You have the choice to run updates and scans manually in spite of the automatic load-and-forget activity occurring in the background which take place every hour. 

Another great, useful component is the green icon on the main dashboard, which turns red when there is a warning or important message for you. 

Devices and System Requirements

G DATA's system requirements vary slightly from product to product, but these are the basic ones to have to run the software:

PC users need to have Windows 7 / 8 / 8.x / 10, a modern computer with an Intel CORE 2 DUO processor, 1 GB of RAM for 32 bit, 2 GB of RAM for 64 bit, and 2 GB of free disk space. 

But even if you have an older CPU G Data software should work without a hitch.

Android users require a smartphone or tablet with Android 4.0 or later.

Mac devices must have Mac OS X 10.7.5 - 10.9, 1 GB of RAM, and 400 MB available disk space.

The business solutions cater for Windows, Linux, Mac, exchange servers, and web and email gateways . For these system requirements, it is best to look on the G DATA website for particulars as there are some variations.

Around the Clock Customer Support

You can contact the G DATA support team via email, 24/7 phone support, or you can submit a contact form with a request for them to get back to you.

Each country has a different service provider number with quick and helpful support 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

That's a real treat, I'd say.

With every treat comes some kind of catch; in this case it is that there is no live chat. I suppose it is not so necessary if there is 24/7 phone support.

The software also has built-in help files which are useful if you need quick solutions and assistance.

Certifications and Awards

The proof is always in the pudding, correct?

Well, over the last few years, G DATA has won national and international awards more frequently than any other European antivirus software provider.

The latest award was bestowed upon G DATA in January 2016 by none other than AV-Test for the G DATA's Internet Security for Android. This test gave the software full marks for protection and malware detection. They received this same award the year before as well.

G DATA is no stranger to AV-Test with its other awards, which I should add G DATA repeatedly received, for its antivirus business and internet security products. AV Comparatives also rewarded them for the antivirus business package.

PCtipp, Virus Bulletin, and PC Welt among others, are other testing resources that have awarded G DATA over the years.

Value for Money

Is G DATA antivirus software worth your time and money?

I certainly think you can give it a bash if you feel the products cover everything you need, especially with the good prices.

Even with the basic Antivirus package you are guaranteed protections against all viruses with the exception of ransomware, and that may just be the reason you don't pick this seeing that other antivirus providers offer anti-ransomware protection in their basic packages.

In saying that, G DATA offers solid performance and customer care around the clock which is a bonus.

So, I guess it's up to you, but you won't be sorry should you give G DATA a go!

My Conclusion

Pros:
  • Less expensive
  • Full-featured firewall
  • 2 Antivirus engines - two layers of virus protection
Cons:
  • No quick scan
  • No ransomware protection
  • Influences PC performance
  • Parental Control has too many loopholes

You will feel "simply secure" with G DATA'S antivirus software, which comes at fantastic prices with good firewall and all-extensive malware protection.

G DATA, however, needs to fulfill its "Simply Secure" motto with anti-ransomware protection, a sharper parental control tool, and a tweaked spam filter.

Only then will the G DATA crew will be trooping ahead!


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By Danielle P

Senior editor, professional writer & researcher

A creative and literary prodigy with an astounding ability to write about anything. While Danielle doesn’t have a vast technical background, her research capabilities are limitless and she can write about anything her heart desires.

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G DATA offers fantastic anti-virus and privacy protection packages with full anti-virus engines minus anti-ransomware protection. What makes G DATA stand out is the competitive prices and the 24/7 customer care for any product you choose. Pick from the 3 different packages for Windows, or the product for Mac and Android -  everyone is catered for!

G Data
Date published:May 24, 2017
8.3 / 10 stars

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