What to do if your antivirus subscription has expired in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1

Many Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 users are faced with a decision when the security software that came installed on their computer expires. What choices do users have?

Problem- Free security software is included with Windows 8 and 8.1 but is usually free just for a trial period, and when it expires some users have experienced frustration.  Users can either pay for continued use of the security software or use something else.

Solution # 1-  Users may decide to pay for the software installed when computer was purchased.  This is the security software that was offered for free during the introductory trial period and signing up and paying a subscription fee will allow the user to continue using  this product. This may or may not be the best choice, and it is definitely more expensive than the next solution.

Since it isn’t good to have more than one security program installed at once, if they do use something else they must first remove the existing security software.

Solution # 2-  Windows 8 and 8.1 already have free anti-virus, security software installed and available for free in Windows Defender.   Windows Defender is included with Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 and helps protect your PC against malware (malicious software). Many new computers come with free subscriptions to antivirus software and other security programs from companies other than Microsoft. When the trial period expires and users do not want to pay to continue using it, they can remove/uninstall it and turn on Windows Defender.

How to make Windows Defender your choice security method?  Follow these directions to remove the existing, expired security software and turn on Windows Defender, which provides security for free.

  1. Fully uninstall the non-Microsoft security software that came with your computer.
  2. Make sure Windows Defender is turned on.

To uninstall the security software that came with your computer, check the software’s Help file.

Make sure Windows Defender is turned on in Windows 8

  1. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen and tap Search (or if you’re using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and then click Search).
  2. In the Search box, type Windows Defender.
  3. Tap or click the Windows Defender icon.
  4. Go to Settings, and make sure that Turn on real-time protection (recommended) is selected.
  5. Tap or click Save Changes.

Information above from this link: http://blogs.microsoft.com/cybertrust/2014/09/16/what-to-do-if-your-antivirus-subscription-has-expired/

Solution # 3- When the free trial period for the security software that came with Windows 8 expires, remove it and use another 3rd-party program, either the free or paid version.If uses do not want to use Windows Defender and do not want to pay to continue the software they were using during the trial period, they may find information on many other options online: