By Andrew Liszewski
Running a few pieces of anti-virus and anti-spyware software on a fast desktop workstation shouldn’t result in very much of a performance hit but on a slower laptop it can actually be quite noticeable. So the Yoggie Pico offloads those network monitoring tasks to a small USB dongle that serves as a miniature firewall. Powered by Linux and a dedicated “security processor” the Pico uses 12 built-in security applications including anti-virus and anti-spyware and only requires a very ‘thin’ client software to be installed on the actual computer.
The Yoggie Pico is considerably more effective over software solutions since it provides an actual physical separation between your laptop and the network you’re connecting to (like a free internet hotspot for example.) A low level driver redirects all the network traffic to the Pico before Windows and the TCP/IP stack see it meaning that any attacks on your system will hit the Pico well before it has a chance to affect your files.
At $179 plus a $30/year subscription fee for updates the Pico isn’t exactly cheap but if you prefer paying for anti-virus and anti-spyware software rather than using a free version this might be a great alternative.
(Please note: Andrew is not an expert on network hardware so if any of my statements grossly misinterpret how the Pico is designed to work please forgive me.)