It's not going to outpace the paid anti-malware tools for effectiveness, but the easy-to-use Panda is more than capable of keeping up with the freebies. It will even automatically check USB drives you insert and launch a "vaccination" against launched processes on the USB drive. Just watch out during Panda installation as it tries to reset some of your defaults—the price you pay for "free."
Our favorite messaging service takes security seriously—it's Snowden-approved!—using its own open-source protocol to do end-to-end encryption, even on voice calls. It's not as much fun as some of the others, but still supports sending photos and video, plus group messaging. On Android, Signal can completely replace the SMS texting app; on iPhone you need to get other users to download Signal or you can't talk to them.
Up to three people on their PCs can use the browser to video chat and even share screens, all without fees or any setup other than sharing a URL. Sign up for an account or sign in with your Google or Facebook accounts, and you can claim a regular-to-use meeting "room" online. Because it's Web based, it works for Linux, Mac, or Windows, even on a Chromebook.
The opposite of file recovery is utter destruction—the kind of thing you do to keep a file out of someone else's hands. Eraser does just that, writing over the spot where the file(s) lived until it's scrubbed clean, with no chance of coming back to haunt you. You can even use it to schedule a wipe of the free space on the disk, or just to purge your recycle bin. During setup you get the option to install an extension for Windows Explorer so you can wipe files or free space instantly.
Second, the term makes a lot of corporate types nervous. While this does not intrinsically bother me in the least, we now have a pragmatic interest in converting these people rather than thumbing our noses at them. There's now a chance we can make serious gains in the mainstream business world without compromising our ideals and commitment to technical excellence -- so it's time to reposition. We need a new and better label.
What if there were a worldwide group of talented ethical programmers voluntarily committed to the idea of writing and sharing software with each other and with anyone else who agreed to share alike? What if anyone could be a part of and benefit from this community even without being a computer expert or knowing anything about programming? We wouldn’t have to worry about getting caught copying a useful program for our friends—because we wouldn’t be doing anything wrong.
Google built Hangouts into its services as a replacement for the Google Talk messaging service, but Hangouts adds voice and video calls. It's unique for this roundup in that it doesn't require an installer, it just works in your browser (though getting the Chrome Extension is recommended). It's perfect for talking to other people on Google—you can get up to nine people in a video chat, all for free.
Practically the de facto reader for ebooks these days, the Kindle brand is more than just hardware—it extends to these apps and programs for reading ebooks (which you have to buy from Amazon, of course). Start the book on any device, continue it elsewhere—the Kindle WhisperSync feature knows where you stopped reading. X-Ray gives you insight into the book; GoodReads integration gives you a social aspect. The new PageFlip lets you keep your page while scouring the rest of the book.
Freeflys: Another strong contender in the freebies space, Freeflys has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, The Doctors, Fox News and a handful of other media outlets. Similar to most of these sites, Freeflys utilizes email alerts to tell users about free-sample offers as they happen. The site also allows you to search for a specific product with the handy search bar.