Antivirus software packages often include custom-built 'secure' Web browsers to be used when navigating banking and shopping sites. But secure browsers can be more trouble than they're worth, as proved by Avast's own Avastium browser, which exposed users' computers to data theft.Image: Volt Collection / ShutterstockWhile modifying Google's open-source Chromium browser into Avastium, Avast removed a safeguard that stopped a Web server from remotely accessing local (i.e., non-Internet) files or running local commands on a client's (i.e., your) browser.
Avast Secure Browser is a free Chromium-based web browser by security company Avast that is advertised as private, fast, and secure on the official download site.The web browser is the official successor of which Avast discontinued some time ago to focus development on the new browser.We will take a close look at the web browser in our review; you will learn about installation and use, functionality that it provides, and whether the fast, secure and private promise is kept. Avast Secure BrowserAvast Secure Browser is available as a standalone download for Microsoft Windows and also as part of Avast's security products. You find the download link in the summary box below the review.SafeZone installations will be updated automatically to the new browser. InstallationThe standalone download is offered as a web installer which means that most program components are downloaded during installation. A click on options on the first installation screen displays several setup preferences:. Place a shortcut on the desktop (yes), taskbar (yes), and in the start menu (no).
Launch the browser when the installation finishes (yes). Set the default program language.
Import bookmarks and settings from my current default browser (no). Import cookies from my current default browser (no). Make Avast Secure Browser my new default browser (no).You need to check the import options if you want to import bookmarks, settings or cookies from the default system browser. Note that the import function supports imports from the default system browser, and that the import will fail if the default browser is not supported by Avast (example: if Pale Moon is your default browser, imports will fail as it is not supported).Note that the browser supports the importing of bookmarks and settings from other browsers after installation.Just load secure://settings/importData at any time to configure the operation. Supported browsers are Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Microsoft Internet Explorer.
You may import from a bookmarks HTML file as well.Note: Avast collects and sends usage statistics and crash reports to company servers automatically. Users are not prompted about this during installation. You may disable the collecting and sending on secure://settings/ under privacy and security. @Phuc Nguyen: “What are some products would you recommend for antivirus, registry cleaner, etc.”For free AVs, Panda Free Antivirus is a great “set-it-and-forget-it” AV with, at last check, an extremely high detection rate. At the other end of the free spectrum, Comodo makes a free AV which, like many of its products, is, shall we say, more complex Depends on what you like. There are many other choices of course.
Gizmo’s freeware site should have a list and reviews.For paid AV, I like Emsisoft. It has two detection engines, one is their own, and the other is from Bitdefender. Bitdefender also makes what many think is the best paid AV out there. I am also inclined to be positively disposed toward F-Secure. You may find information from an organization like AV Comparatives, etc., helpful.For registry cleaner, I would say that this is really not necessary.
You could go your entire life without using a registry cleaner–and most people do–and be fine; on the other hand, an inadvertent screw-up with a registry cleaner could really cause some harm.That said, I feel comfortable recommending software from the developer NirSofer. He makes many excellent pieces of freeware–one of them, CleanAfterMe–may be what you are looking for:“CleanAfterMe allows you to easily clean files and Registry entries that are automatically created by the Windows operating system during your regular computer work.With CleanAfterMe, you can clean the cookies/history/cache/passwords of Internet Explorer, the ‘Recent’ folder, the Registry entries that record the last opened files, the temporary folder of Windows, the event logs, the Recycle Bin, and more.”You can get it at nirsoft dot net.You might also have a look at BleachBit. I haven’t used it, but Martin reviewed it here on ghacks on February 28, 2018. You can do a search here to read his review of it.Good luck!:). Dear Toka,You’re very welcome–thanks for saying so!
I stopped using Avast many, many years ago, but I still use CCleaner 5.43 Pro, but keep it blocked in my firewall, and have not a single problem or complaint.By “alternative OS” I wonder if you mean Linux?At any rate the future does look very bleak indeed, as I’ll NEVER use Windows 10, so after 2020 or 2023 I don’t know if I’ll continue using unpatched Win 7 or 8.1, or downgrade to Linux. Some people love Linux but I’m not one of them. Maybe when the time comes in a couple/few years I’ll stop most personal computing altogether. “We necessarily express ourselves by means of words and we usually think in terms of space. That is to say, language requires us to establish between our ideas the same sharp and precise distinctions, the same discontinuity, as between material objects.”Henri Bergson – Time and Free Will: An essay on the Immediate Data of Consciousness (author’s preface)The time it takes to get the comments published is likely relevant of a deep comments’ section problem; time is maybe why I recall the above mentioned.Why not let Ghacks spare 24 hours for the site’s maintenance?
Repairing/improving simultaneously to managing incoming comments must be a hell of a work. This is becoming truly weird. I very briefly tested Avast Secure Browser before I saw Ghacks very impressive review.
My thanks for testing better than I ever wood. I tried Avast SB primarily because I switched to Avast IS a few days ago and wanted to see how SB integrated with IS. My default browser is Chrome 64 beta because I like to stay ahead of fixes when they are applied in a real beta by old school standards, and I only had to revert to stable once with Chrome beta. Your point is well taken whether SB will stay current with chromium; I do not use Opera much because of that concern.I look forward to your further comments about SB in the future, as well as the user comments at the bottom of this informative analysis by Martin.
I empathize with you! Regarding suggestions for safe online “financials”: always make sure your Firefox or whatever browser you are using is updated to the most recent version, and make sure anytime you’re doing “financials” that your Firefox browser or other browser shows “https” in the address bar and/or shows a padlock symbol (usually green) next to it. Also, if you don’t have it already, go to the Firefox add-ons page and download and install the add-on “HTTPS Everywhere.”Another suggestion would be to use a program which specifically protects against keyloggers, such as a program like KeyScrambler from QFX Software, SpyShelter, Zemana, etc.
These keystroke encryption/anti-keylogger programs can help prevent your passwords and account numbers, etc., from being stolen if your computer should ever become compromised.Of course make sure that you are running regular frequent complete scans with your security product, such as Avast, etc., as well.By the way, it seems that the subject of the ghacks article above, Avast Secure Browser, is the official Avast replacement for their SafeZone browser. From the Avast support website:“From September 2017, Avast is temporarily pausing the distribution of Avast SafeZone Browser. Our updated browser, which includes a range of new security and privacy tools, will be available for download in the near future. If you already have SafeZone Browser installed on your PC, you will be automatically upgraded to our latest browser as soon as it is released.”. BW, you’re very welcome:) I understand the frustration with renewing and finding out Avast did away with SafeZone. Avast may have done that because of the serious security flaw that was discovered in SafeZone.
Avast may have wanted to get a known insecure product off the market so it couldn’t be used to exploit users, and then it took them some time to get this new Secure Browser ready for release.Since you were familiar with and comfortable with SafeZone, maybe it’s worth giving this new official replacement, Avast Secure Browser, a try. From Martin’s article above, this new Secure Browser has a “Bank Mode” for online banking sites:“Bank Mode (disabled) — switch to a virtual desktop to communicate with important sites such as online banking sites. Bank Mode is only available if Avast Antivirus or other Avast security programs that support it are installed on the PC.”And Martin concludes: “Avast is off to a good start with the new browser. It offers better functionality than the company’s SafeZone Browser and does well in benchmarks and other tests.”So it may be worth a try for you, and then you can decide whether Avast Secure Browser or Firefox works better for you.
Because I use Avast for my computer security I got Avast safe zone for free. Avast has changed it to Avast Secure Zone, and loaded it onto my computer without asking. Lost all of my shortcuts.
Browser is very glitchy with fragmented letters. Can’t put more than eight new shortcuts on screen. When you try to close a tab it closes intire browser and sends you back to desk top. Tech help is totally useless. A bunch of Indies I can’t understand.
Probably because they really don’t want to hear from anybody. I am going to start looking for new antivirus softwear because I am tired of Avast putting things that don’t work on my computer without my permission. I prefer Google Chrome but after adding ram, it still sucked resources.
So I tried Avast Secure Browser after being a paid AIS user for about 20 yrs, not sure about this I think I see why it’s free. Not crazy about adding extensions but the browser stopped translating (had to dwld Google Translate) after numerous emails & a screenshot a tech was able to tell “we have a problem & you are correct, it doesn’t work.” Umm, really now???
Then I can’t access my banking page (Netspend.com, never loads). Was told to start shutting off security features starting with “do not track.” Bottom line, this should have made it out of Beta testing!!!. My system has sort of been in a state of suspension for years, meaning I haven’t updated jack s^%! Since windows 7 updates got cobbled together into a single installer, that was in 2017?? I still have Avast installed, it updates itself and talks trash to me all the time, it’s garbage and it’s probably spying on me but I’ve essentially stop caring, seems like everything is out to get you anyways so whats the point. Anonymox for macbook. These days your paranoia about software spying on you is well founded especially if your using the latest and greatest by Microsoft and Google. Yes Avast Browser is much better than google and ms because they are a small player in the game of data collection.