Smart Security makes an effective security toolbox

Eset's Smart Security takes the structure built by their popular antivirus program NOD32 and adds on two wings: a personal firewall and a spam filter.

ESET's Smart Security takes the structure built by their popular antivirus program NOD32 and adds on two wings: a personal firewall and a spam filter. Because much of Smart Security is the same as NOD32, this review will focus only on the firewall and spam filter.

The firewall's advanced settings are Smart Security's strength. Users can extensively customize the firewall's behavior, but don't have to. There are five default settings: automatic, automatic with user-defined exceptions, interactive, policy-based, and learning. You can set safe zones, configure remote desktop access, and manage intrusion detection, all from an uncluttered and easy-to-use menu. ESET chose usability over flashiness with its design, and users can jump between advanced options for any of Smart Security's tools from the same pane.

The antispam filter is similarly effective and configurable. The program can automatically mark outgoing addresses as safe, as well as detect global address books. Smart Security is surprisingly light, consuming around 50MB of RAM when running, and users should note that NOD32 has consistently scored near the top of several independent antivirus testing organization ratings for finding the most malware while encountering fewer false positives than most. Uninstallation is still tricky, unfortunately, leaving behind residual system files and Registry settings. Still, for getting all your security tools in one box, Smart Security is an effective and well-respected choice.

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