The following is an actual user-submitted question:

Q: Are Webroot and Trend Micro the same? Is it harmful to have them on at the same time? Or is it a waste of money, and am I doing double security?

A: This is a good question. It reminds me of a scene from a Billy Wilder movie called Ace in the Hole. In it, Kirk Douglas plays a scheming reporter who tells his prospective employer that, “I’ve done a lot of lying in my time. I’ve lied to men who wear belts. I’ve lied to men who wear suspenders. But I’d never be so stupid as to lie to a man who wears both belt and suspenders.” His point being that you can’t slip one by a man who has redundant methods for keeping his pants up.

Back in the world of Internet security software, Web Root and Trend Micro are actually different Internet security products put out by different companies. You can read our reviews and see a comparison here. You actually should not have two Internet security products of any brand running at once. It’s not so much that you’re doing damage, but the products may interfere with each other allowing something else to damage to your computer. Instead of doing double security, you might actually be cutting your security down.

Webroot may do something that Trend Micro sees as virus-like activity, or vice versa. Of course, Webroot is not a virus, but its activities could be misinterpreted. At the very least, it’s a bit of a resource drain. At worst, it could interfere in detection of an actual virus or firewall intrusion. So choose the one you like best and uninstall the other one.

In Ace in the Hole, it turns out that Douglas actually is lying. So, while Internet security software is neither belt nor suspender, the moral of the story is the same: sometimes being twice protected doesn’t help at all.