IObit Malware Fighter is an antispyware with a modern look that promises to defend your PC against all types of malware.
An anti-malware with antivirus features
Malware Fighter protects your PC against annoying and sometimes dangerous programs such as spyware, browser toolbars or remote control utilities (RAT tools). IObit advises to run it alongside an antivirus for more protection.
Even though IObit states Malware Fighter is not an antivirus, you will find all the typical features of the category, such as an on-demand file scanner that scans your hard drive for malware, and a browser shield, which prevents changes to your homepage and browser settings.
Malware Fighter's real-time protection covers nearly all areas of the system, from downloads to USB drives (many viruses enter the PC from these). Updates are daily and fully automatic, and you can also send suspicious files to IObit for analysis.
Attractive, but a bit of a scaremonger
The appearance of Malware Fighter is attractive, very much in line with other antivirus programs for Windows 8. It features a dark background window, and uses a color scheme to convey the urgency of each task. When Malware Fighter detects something, it displays a warning at the bottom-right corner of the screen.
Warnings won't spawn if you're playing a videogame or watching a movie: the improved Silent mode reduces Malware Fighter's resource consumption and automatically blocks any threats. It also stops all scheduled updates and scans. In the settings you can define exceptions to this mode.
The language used by Malware Fighter is sometimes overly scary. It classifies some problems as urgent when in fact they are not, and it does not hesitate to recommend additional applications with the promise to solve "problems", whose nature it does not explain.
A weak companion for your antivirus
The effectiveness of Malware Fighter is mediocre. In our tests we were able to download, unzip and run some of the most dangerous malware of the year, such as CryptoLocker, without Malware Fighter sounding a single alarm. Even when we requested a manual scan nothing happened.
Other malwares, such as Zeus or njRAT, were only detected at execution time, right after we double-clicked the EXE files. And when we installed a browser hijacker, Malware Fighter failed to block the changes. In summary: Malware Fighter is often unable to stop the latest malware in time.
In light of these results, we don't recommend to use IMF as the sole security product in your PC. If you already have an antivirus and want to add an extra shield to your arsenal, installing Malware Fighter won't hurt, but do not rely solely on its scanner to keep your PC safe.