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Best antivirus software in 2022

As new cyber threats, such as malware and viruses, develop every day – getting the best antivirus software for your device is crucial. Even something as simple as downloading an application or the file that your acquaintances sent via email can end up with your device getting infected.

Even though the latest operating systems, such as Windows 11 and 10, have in-built security solutions, they’re not comprehensive enough to provide all-round protection.

Aside from safeguarding your devices from threats, a high-quality antivirus can do much more. Whether it’s keeping your data anonymous with a VPN service, protecting your login credentials with a password manager, or limiting some websites with parental controls, you can get all that with a single security suite.

Here, I'll cover the best antivirus software of 2022 that offers robust virus protection. And it's not just the #1 pick which rules: these are all great options, and the perfect solution for you might just be a few floors below!

The best antivirus software of 2022

  1. Bitdefender Antivirus – best all-rounded antivirus in 2022
  2. Norton Antivirus – feature-loaded antivirus suite
  3. TotalAV Antivirus – antivirus with fundamental security features
  4. McAfee Total protection – virus removal tool for all of your devices
  5. Surfshark AV – excellent antivirus and VPN package
  6. Avira Antivirus – budget-friendly antivirus with a free plan
  7. Trend Micro – protection software for all kinds of threats

📢 LIMITED OFFER: Only now, get 1 year of TotalAV at 84% OFF!

Now that you have already seen our short list of the best antivirus software, you might also be interested to dive into our detailed list for more information. All of our listed providers have the necessary tools to provide maximum protection and bonus features that you may find useful.

1. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus – best overall antivirus protection in 2022

Bitdefender interface
Max simultaneous connections:5 devices
Free version:Yes
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥Get all Bitdefender plans at 60% OFF!🔥

Bitdefender is our best of the best antivirus software that offers outstanding protection. The independent testing lab results show that the antivirus successfully blocks 100% of both 0-day and 4-week old malware and other cyber threats.

Meanwhile, our in-house tests revealed that Bitdefender is quite gentle with system resources. While the quick scan took around 2 minutes, the full one went on for about 14. Plus, the antivirus blocked all 10 zero-day threats that we challenged it with.

Whatever OS you’re using – Windows, macOS, iPhone, or Android – Bitdefender has apps for them all. While setting up the antivirus may take a while, the beginner-friendly apps make up for it.

Bitdefender comes as a full cybersecurity suite. You get advanced malware, ransomware, webcam, and microphone protection, a password manager and extra features, such as Antispam, SafePay, and an Anti-tracker.

What’s even better is that the Bitdefender Antivirus Plus (and other more expensive plans) includes a Virtual Private Network (VPN) with a daily data limit of 200 MB for keeping you anonymous online. Additionally, you can get some useful extras, like a file shredder or the parental control features, and protect up to 15 devices if you upgrade from Bitdefender Total Security to the Family Pack plan.

With prices starting from $23.99/year, Bitdefender has budget-friendly subscription options for anyone. There's even a Bitdefender antivirus free edition and a 30-day free trial that might help make up your mind before committing.

Visit our Bitdefender review to read more about the features.

2. Norton 360 Antivirus – premium antivirus with top security features

Max simultaneous connections:10 devices
Free version:No
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥Get up to 66% OFF Norton Antivirus🔥

Norton 360 antivirus is one of our top anti-malware programs as well. The results of independent testing labs are great – it catches 100% of zero-day malware, has minimal impact on the speeds, and detects no false positives.

During our own tests, Norton’s real-time protection feature instantly blocked all threats as soon as we released them. While the quick scan took less than a minute and didn’t have much impact on system resources, the full one was quite heavy. It’s not surprising considering how well it detects malware.

I tried all available apps (Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS), and let me tell you – the interface is organized and easy to navigate on all of them. However, some of the extra features open up in different tabs which can seem inconvenient for some.

Norton 360 antivirus offers a wide range of security features: a smart firewall, secure cloud backup, a VPN, and a password manager. Apart from that, you can get SafeCam and Dark Web Monitoring features, as well as Parental Control and School Time options for families.

What’s really unique about this protection suite is that it also provides identity restoration support if it gets stolen and monitors your social media accounts for an extra layer of security. And you can even mine cryptocurrency using Norton Crypto.

With prices starting from $19.99/year, this antivirus is a great choice for robust protection. Plus, there’s a free 7-day trial even for Norton 360 Deluxe and Premium plans.

Visit our Norton 360 Antivirus review to read more about the features.

3. TotalAV – the essential free antivirus package

Total AV user interface
Max simultaneous connections:6 devices
Free version:Yes
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux
Current deal:🔥Get TotalAV, now 84% OFF!🔥

With excellent malware detection rates, TotalAV earns one of the top spots on our best antivirus list. It successfully blocks 97% of zero-day and 100% of 4-week old malware attacks, guaranteeing robust protection against various cyber threats.

When testing in-house, TotalAV found 7 out of 10 malicious files during the full scan. Plus, it was quite heavy on resources and scanned for around 7 minutes. The quick scan was, well… quick. It took 14 seconds and had virtually no visible effects on resources.

In terms of the apps, the interface of both dedicated mobile (Android and iOS) and desktop (Windows and macOS) apps is well-organized and simple, just as the installation process itself.

The antivirus also has useful security features that come free of charge. Without spending a single dollar, you get a malware scanner and anti-phishing protection.

If you do get a paid subscription, your security coverage expands a great deal with real-time protection and ransomware shields. On top of that, it also includes a Cloud Scanner, a Disk Cleaner, and optimization tools. These will help you free up some space in your hard drive and make your startup more efficient.

Apart from that, TotalAV offers a VPN with unlimited data, a password manager, and an Ad Blocker to ensure safe online browsing.

Apart from the free plan, there’s also three other plans with prices starting from $19.00/year. You’re also entitled to a full refund since each plan comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Visit our TotalAV Antivirus review to read more about the features.

4. McAfee Total Protection – great cross-platform support with basic plan

McAfee user interface
Max simultaneous connections:10 devices
Free version:Yes
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥Get McAfee, save up to 67%🔥

McAfee falls into the category of our top antivirus suites since it offers not only protection against the latest cyber threats but also provides additional security features.

Independent testing labs have examined the security capabilities of this antivirus and show that it catches 100% of both 0-day and 4-week old cyber threats. They rated its performance, protection, and usability with 6 out of 6 points.

We tested McAfee ourselves and threw 10 malicious files for it to detect. While the quick scan found none of them, the full scan blocked all threats not even halfway through the scan. This is a rare sight to see even with the best antiviruses. So, although the system resources can take a toll on your device performance, the final results are worth the wait.

What’s also worth mentioning is that McAfee supports Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android operating systems and offers pretty easy-to-use apps.

McAfee’s core package includes a VPN, a password manager, file encryption, and a file shredder, among other features.

Additionally, the antivirus provides identity theft protection and security for your network as well. The Home Network Security allows managing all devices connected to the wifi and alerts you of any intrusion attempts.

McAfee’s prices start from $39.99/year, and there’s both low-priced and more expensive tier options. However, there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee for you to test all the features without the risk of committing to an unsatisfactory service.

Visit our McAfee Antivirus review to read more about the features.

5. Surfshark AV – great all-around protection with a top VPN

Surfshark AV banner
Max simultaneous connections:5
Free version:No
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android
Current deal:🔥Get up to 83% OFF Surfshark Antivirus!🔥

Some of you might know Surfshark as a VPN provider – but its excellent antivirus suite makes it so much more. It's a great all-in-one package for all your online security needs. Fully certified by independent antivirus testing labs, Surfshark Antivirus can block 100% of threats, guaranteeing exceptional malware detection rates.

We put it to the test ourselves: a full scan was exceptionally fast, covering over 100,000 files in just over 90 seconds and finding 7 out of 10 potentially malicious files planted in the system. Additionally, real-time protection protects your system from malware, trojans, adware, and more at all times.

Data Breach Protection also checks for your personal data leaked on various internet databases – stopping hackers and identity thieves in their tracks.

There's even a secure search engine, where everything stays strictly private, and neither search history nor activity logs are collected. With all these security features, it's much more than an antivirus – it's a comprehensive protection suite, helping you avoid all sorts of online threats.

And of course, there's also the wildcard: Surfshark has one of the best VPNs in the business, keeping your privacy intact when surfing online while offering some of the best speeds in the industry.

Despite all of these features put into one package, Surfshark also offers one of the best applications we've tested. While some antivirus apps tend to be clunky and overloaded, difficult to navigate, and slowing down your phone or computer, Surfshark does an excellent job keeping it clean and simple for your Windows, macOS, and Android devices.

You can get this app on 5 devices for only $29.88/year.

Visit our Surfshark Antivirus review to read more about the features.

6. Avira Antivirus – best free plan on the market

Avira user interface
Max simultaneous connections:25 devices
Free version:Yes
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥Get 1 year of Avira at 40% OFF!🔥

Avira Antivirus is one of the best antivirus software packages available in both free and premium segments that also offers outstanding protection. It showed impressive scores from independent test labs, successfully blocking 99.2% of cyber threats.

As for our initiated tests, Avira distinguished itself with a super fast full scan – it took only 3 minutes and 30 seconds. But get this – it also managed to block all 10 malicious files. Although the CPU was high the whole time, it shouldn’t be considered a drawback since it only takes a few minutes.

Avira antivirus is compatible with the most popular operating systems (Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS). However, not all features are available for macOS – email protection and download scans are for Windows users only.

As for features, without opening up your wallet, you can get a VPN, a firewall, and a password generator when most of the time you’ll be paying extra to get some or all of them.

Apart from that, this antivirus has advanced ransomware protection, web protection for safe online shopping, email protection, and a file shredder. There’s also automatic software updating feature, a tool for browser safety, and a password manager along with regular malware protection solutions.

Furthermore, what distinguishes Avira from other antiviruses is its system optimization tools. For example, you can speed up the booting of your device.

Avira’s prices start from $30.99/year, but if you turn out to be unhappy with the service, there’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Visit our Avira Antivirus review to read more about the features.

7. Trend Micro – simple and secure antivirus for online threat protection

Trend Micro antivirus banner
Max simultaneous connections:10 devices
Free version:Yes (Android and iOS)
Platforms:Windows, Linux, macOS, Chromebook, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥Get Trend Micro, now 54% OFF!🔥

Trend Micro is another great antivirus software that can help you protect your devices from cyber threats. During independent lab tests, this antivirus showed the ability to catch 100% of the latest malware during the examination.

Our tests demonstrated that while there were a few spikes, the antivirus wasn’t heavy on system resources in general. The full scan managed to delete 8 threats out of 10 in under 9 minutes.

Trend Micro is compatible with all major operating systems (including Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS) so that you could use it on both desktop and mobile devices, and it’s ideal for beginners. However, it does take ages to uninstall the app.

In terms of features, this antivirus uses AI technologies to scan for malware. Aside from that, Trend Micro offers PayGuard and Folder Shield for safe shopping and document protection from ransomware. You can also enjoy using Social Media Privacy Protection, Fraud Buster, Dark Web Monitoring features, and a VPN to add an extra layer of security when browsing online.

What’s even better is that Trend Micro gives the possibility to use system optimization tools and a password manager to boost your device’s performance and keep all of your credentials safe.

With this provider, you can check out their free version to see how it feels. And if you want to test out the Trend Micro Maximum Security or other premium plans (which start from $19.95/year), they include a 30-day money-back guarantee as well.

Visit our Trend Micro review to read more about the features.

8. ESET NOD32 – the best lightweight antivirus software

NOD32 user interface
Max simultaneous connections:10 devices
Free version:No
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android
Current deal:🔥Get ESET, save up to 30%🔥

ESET NOD32 is the leading Slovak cybersecurity product and falls into the category of our best antivirus software. The independent testing lab scores don’t disappoint – the antivirus is categorized as a Top Product that blocks 100% of attempted attacks.

However, we did some testing ourselves as well. While the scanning options were a bit confusing, the custom scan (which appears to be a mixture of quick and full ones) found all threats that we challenged it with. System resources weren’t affected to a point where apps would crash, so it’s a huge plus as well.

You can get ESET on Windows, Linux, macOS, and Android. Unfortunately, it’s not available on iOS, but other apps are clean and user-friendly.

With its core package, you get real-time protection against malware and ransomware. But, if you're worrying that the NOD32 Essential Protection might not be enough, you can opt for ESET Advanced Protection which includes the Safe Browsing feature to prevent harmful JavaScript injections and a network monitoring tool.

For those who want to go all-in, there's an option to pick the ESET Ultimate Protection package. It will add a password manager and encryption for personal files.

What’s really exceptional about ESET NOD32 is that it’s cloud-based and offloads most of the heavy processing to their servers. This means much less work for your device and better performance.

In terms of pricing, the basic plan starts from $27.99/year. The price of each package increases with the number of devices that you need to protect.

Visit our ESET Antivirus review to read more about the features.

9. Malwarebytes – simple and intuitive antivirus platform

Max simultaneous connections:5 devices
Free version:Yes
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android, ChromeOS
Current deal:🔥Get Malwarebytes, now 25% OFF🔥

Malwarebytes is another solid antivirus program that does the job well. It performs really well in independent lab testing, especially when it comes to detecting malware. Let it be a zero-day old recent threat or one that’s been around for more than 4 weeks, it stops 100% of them.

Malwarebytes had quite an impact on system resources during our in-house test. So we wouldn’t recommend launching any apps during full scans. Additionally, it found 7 out of 10 threats during the 6 minute scan.

You can install Malwarebytes on Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android platforms. They’re very simple and allow you to set different scans, including daily threat scans.

Malwarebytes uses real-time malware protection to monitor your device activity and stop any potential cyber threats before they enter the system. Additionally, there’s a ransomware prevention feature to help you avoid file-encrypting viruses from attacking your device.

What’s also worth mentioning is that Malwarebytes includes exploit protection which is useful when stopping malware from both infecting the device and spreading further.

When it comes to extra features, Malwarebytes offers a VPN to help you encrypt your Internet traffic and protect private information when browsing online. Not only will your devices be protected from viruses, but also incoming and outgoing internet traffic and other data.

What’s worth mentioning is that there’s a free Malwarebytes version but it only offers a malware scanner. If you want full protection, the premium plans start from $33.74/year.

Visit our Malwarebytes review to read more about the features.

10. AVG Antivirus – reliable protection from a well-known company

AVG banner
Max simultaneous connections:10 devices
Free version:Yes
Platforms:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥Get up to 50% OFF AVG!🔥

AVG Antivirus is a great anti-malware software which comes from one of the biggest online security companies in the world. It shows great malware detection scores, blocking 99.98% of cyber threats with approximately 10 false positives. It’s also received 6 out of 6 points in protection, performance, and usability tests.

You can install this security software on all major desktop and mobile devices and enjoy easy-to-use apps. This includes Windows, macOS, Android, and iPhone.

AVG Antivirus offers an all-around security package, including advanced scans for all the main types of online threats: viruses, spyware, ransomware, trojans, toolkits, and more.

But of course, prevention is the best medicine. AVG has a solid Enhanced Firewall feature, a dedicated VPN for secure browsing, as well as AI-based phishing threat detection. Plus, advanced webcam protection will give you peace of mind, so even the most security-conscious users can go through video calls.

You can install this security software on all major operating systems and enjoy easy-to-use apps. When it comes to mobile security, AVG has an anti-theft phone tracker, allowing you to access, lock, and locate your phone from a distance, and even take a sneaky picture of the thief.

In terms of pricing, you can get basic malware protection with AVG Antivirus Free without spending a single dollar. However, other security features are only available with AVG Internet Security and AVG Ultimate plans for $37.80/year.

Visit our AVG Antivirus review to read more about the features.

How we tested the best antivirus software

Testing the best antivirus solutions isn’t as difficult as ranking them afterwards. Our first step was to weed out all of the software that doesn’t meet our security standards. This includes programs with low malware detection rates (which is their primary job) and apps that are simply too buggy.

Here’s how our testing process looked like:

Providers tested:19
Operating systems used:Windows, macOS, Android
Minimum virus detection rate:>95%
Features tested:Real-time protection, spam filters, firewall, parental controls, bonus features

Then, we ranked the providers with careful consideration of various factors. The most important aspects to consider were malware protection rates and extra features. However, that’s not all there is to it.

So here are the main criteria we used to determine the best antivirus programs in 2022:

  • Independent antivirus testing. Such labs as AV-Test Institute, SE Labs, AV-Comparatives continuously put different antiviruses to a test. This way, we evaluate how well they detect malware and other threats.
  • In-house antivirus testing. This one is mostly for spyware, adware, and other types of malware. It’s one thing to launch an antivirus that scores highly and another to retain the position throughout the year.
  • False positive record. Malware and other cyber threats are being constantly updated to ensure successful attacks. While even the best antivirus can’t catch it all 100% of the time, it’s important that the program doesn’t overreact too often.
  • Bonus features. We checked which antiviruses offer some extra benefits, such as firewalls, spam filters, secure browsers, or other, without overpricing it.
  • Supported devices. Since many top antivirus products allow connecting multiple devices simultaneously, we looked for solutions that support various devices.
  • Performance. If you don’t have the latest hardware, an antivirus scan can hamper your device’s performance. We looked at providers that have as minimal effect on your resources as possible.
  • Ease of use. No matter how sophisticated the best antivirus software is, any user regardless of experience should be able to scan their device effortlessly.
  • Reputation. It’s hard to stay clean, but only clean antiviruses can reach the top. And that’s why you won’t see AVG or Avast at the top of our list.
  • Price. Having tested dozens of providers, we made sure the ones we suggest provide you with budget-friendly options and give you your money’s worth.
  • Customer support. Such customer service options as a 24/7 live chat or email are crucial for any cyber product. After all, if you run into any issues, you want to make sure you get immediate support.

Best antivirus software compared

Bitdefender Norton 360TotalAVMcAfeeSurfsharkAVAviraTrend MicroESET NOD32Malwarebytes





Free versionYesNoYesYes (Android, iOS)NoYesYes (Android and iOS)NoYesYes
Pricefrom $23.99/yearfrom $19.99/yearfrom $19.00/yearfrom $39.99/yearfrom $29.88/yearfrom $30.99/yearfrom $19.95/yearfrom $27.99/yearfrom $33.74/yearfrom $37.80/year
Customer supportFAQs, guides, phone, email, live chatGuides, FAQs, live chat, phonePhone, email, ticketGuides, FAQs, live chatFAQs, guides, video tutorials, 24/7 live chatPhone, email, guides, FAQsPhone, email, social mediaPhone, email, guides, FAQsGuides, FAQs, email formsFAQs, guides, phone, live chat
Device supportWindows, macOS, Android, iOSWindows, macOS, iOS, AndroidWindows, Mac, iOS, Android, LinuxWindows, Mac, Android, iOSWindows, Android, macOSWindows, Mac, Android, iOSWindows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOSWindows, Linux, Mac, AndroidWindows, Android, macOS, ChromeOS, iOSWindows, macOS, Android, iOS
  • Advanced Threat Defense
  • Profiles
  • Ransomware remediation
  • AntiSpam
  • Anti-tracker
  • File shredder
  • Anti-webcam hijack
  • VPN
  • Password manager
  • Real-time threat protection
  • VPN
  • Smart Firewall
  • Password manager
  • Cloud backup
  • SafeCam
  • Safe Browsing (VPN)
  • WebShield extension
  • Secure Password Vault
  • Ad blocker
  • System tune up
  • Ransomware protection
  • QuickClean
  • Shredder
  • Vulnerability scanner
  • McAfee WebAdvisor
  • McAfee Speed Up
  • Password manager
  • CleanWeb
  • Data breach monitoring
  • Excellent VPN included
  • Great customer support
  • Private search engine
  • Real-time protection
  • Includes password manager
  • Supports many operating systems
  • Safe shopping suite
  • Adds up to your browser protection
  • Reliable malware removal
  • Most advanced antivirus on the market
  • Great at removing malware
  • Highly customizable
  • Many bonus features
  • Layered ransomware protection
  • Sophisticated spam filter
  • Mute mode
  • Anti-theft tools
  • Password Manager
  • Switch Protection Mode
  • Secure browser
  • Real-time protection
  • Exploit protection
  • Browser Guard
  • Data breach monitoring
  • VPN protection
  • Secure file and media vault
  • Wi-Fi protection
  • Phishing protection
ReviewBitdefender reviewNorton 360 reviewTotalAV reviewMcAfee reviewSurfshark AV reviewAvira reviewTrend Micro reviewESET NOD32 reviewMalwarebytes reviewAVG review

How to choose the best antivirus software?

Choosing the best antivirus software might seem challenging at first. There are so many options offering a variety of features. So, how to decide which one suits your needs?

Here are a few simple factors that you should consider before choosing an antivirus:

  • Check security features. The best antivirus solutions should include high quality security features. You can pick one of our top 5 products which are listed above – they come in an all-in-one bundle. However, if you’re already using some kind of online protection (maybe it’s a VPN or a password manager), you can get other antivirus programs that are not so feature-rich.
  • Seek for all-round protection. If you’re not the only one using a computer or a mobile device, you should consider getting an antivirus that would provide extra protection. Some providers have solid parental control features while others protect your whole home network and alert about possible dangers.
  • Consider your budget. Not all antivirus programs offer the same bang-for-the-buck ratio. That’s why spending less (or more) can sometimes get you many more features.
  • Try the software first. Keep in mind that you have to like the software because most companies sell 1-year or longer subscriptions. Thus, you should test it before purchasing. Luckily, the majority of products offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, so testing before buying will save you both time and money.

How does antivirus software work?

The way antivirus programs work is they scan your device, detect known malicious threats, and remove or quarantine them. They also regularly update themselves so they could also detect newly emerged threats. The so-called heuristic scan tries to detect unknown malware by looking at the way your programs behave.

There are two types of scans that are usually available. The background scan provides real-time protection by actively checking the programs that are currently opened.

In contrast, a full system scan checks every file on your hard drive. It’s recommended to run one after installing the antivirus and after the real-time scan finds an infection.

Video review: Best antivirus software of 2022

Best antivirus based on your OS

Different antivirus programs support different operating systems. Yet, each OS works best with specifically customized antivirus software. After lots of testing, we have picked Bitdefender as the best AV option. It’s versatile, secure, and adapted for various operating systems.

You can find our full lists of the best antivirus services for different OS down below:

  • Antivirus for Windows. Many antivirus providers claim to offer all the most important features for security, as well as great protection scores. However, the programs may still lack development. Thus, we have done the testing for you and listed the top antivirus programs for Windows 10 and Windows 11.
  • Antivirus for Mac. Many antivirus programs for Mac were ported from Windows AV programs. Therefore, most of them lack personalized features. The application ends up as incomplete and not as safe as the built-in security options. So, we have tested and picked the best antivirus fully customized for Mac.
  • Antivirus for Chrome. It is said that Chromebooks are incredibly safe and immune to malware. Thus, many people skip fully securing their Chrome devices. The remained gap omits viruses and malware. Moreover, the AV for this OS must be compatible with Android, as Chrome OS and Android are basically the same. That’s why researched the most suitable antivirus programs for Chrome OS.
  • Antivirus for Android. Even though Android devices have Google’s built-in security, they are not as protected as they should be. The built-in security may overlook malware and detect false positives. To secure your mobile even more, you can choose the best antivirus software for Android from our list.
  • Antivirus for iOS. It’s a pity how most of the antivirus providers skip developing applications for iOS. This causes their apps to have low-quality security without real-time protection. So, we have chosen for you the best antivirus options specifically for iOS devices.

Why do I need antivirus?

No matter what level of IT skills and online browsing habits you have, an antivirus is a necessary addition to your cybersecurity posture.

Here are some of the reasons why you’d benefit from investing in an antivirus:

  • You often end up on suspicious websites. Unreliable websites are the primary source of various cyber threats that can infect your devices. Premium antivirus tools can block malicious sites and intrusive ads to help you avoid malware.
  • You shop online regularly. If you’re entering your credit card details nearly every day, it would be wise to use an antivirus that puts your transactions in an encrypted secure browser screen.
  • Your kids use your device. If you have children, making sure they stay safe is even more important. With the parental control features, such as webcam blocking, you can protect your children even while not at home. Chances are there are more than a few devices connected to your home wifi. An antivirus can protect all of them at once, saving the hassle of catering to each separately.
  • You don’t have all-round protection. Whether you’re using a password manager, a VPN service, or a secure email as separate products or not, you can benefit from a quality antivirus suite. Nowadays, they incorporate most of these cybersecurity tools, so it’s significantly easier to use them and ensure all-round security of your device.

As the years go by, it’s less about viruses and malware but about cybersecurity in general. Keep in mind that great antivirus solutions are feature-rich and come cheaper than getting a file encryptor or a VPN separately.

Free vs. paid antivirus: should you pay?

Although free antivirus solutions can offer basic protection against malware and fulfill simple needs, you should pay if you want reliable and all-rounded security.

There’s one thing to remember – companies need to make money: either from premium plans or from your personal data. This means that an unreliable antivirus company can sell your information to the wrong hands.

Not to mention that some free antivirus software can include pop-up ads or even malicious programs that can infiltrate you with malware (the last thing you want from an antivirus).

So, if you still want to get a free service, look at serious and legitimate companies that offer the best and tested free antivirus services. They’re still interested in you eventually paying for premium plans, but at least they won’t do you harm.

However, expect fewer features and serious limitations as you go. Often, free plans will let you run simple system scans. But features like custom scanning, ransomware protection, and advanced firewalls are usually only available when purchasing a premium plan.



prefix 1 year ago
How necessary is antivirus software? forgive me but I’ve been using my computer for ages without any protection and nothing happened. I never click on random links and generally try to be careful online so I don’t see how my computer could get infected. I also use vpn with blockers. I would be interested to know if I may actually face any threats even with such low risk . I’m genuinely interested, always eager to learn. Thank you for your help.
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Dear wounducknow,
Words cannot describe how essential the antivirus software is. I’m happy that you were able to dodge malware so far, but the fact is that it’s getting more sophisticated, and there’s more and more of it. No matter how internet-savvy you are, you may still get infected with malware one day. Besides, Antivirus Suite would check whether your email ended up on a leaked database. Therefore, for starters, I recommend you install Bitdefender, which has a powerful free version. If you like it, you can get the full suite that will cost you less than a couple of bucks per month.
prefix 1 year ago
After similar hacking experiences on an Android cellphone as several posters mentioned (with VPN in fact), purchased a desktop-Windows 10 to discontinue internet use with cell. Have Comcast internet service with modem. Main use consists of sensitive and financial information. while having once burned twice shy-itis, which comprehensive paid anti-all program is best? Choosing a replacement for gmail is another conundrum. Don’t intend to sync with other devices or WiFi anything if can help it.
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hey, Andreas. In your case, I suggest the Norton Antivirus suite. It has its own VPN and password manager. And since none of the suites above offer a secure email service, you should choose either Tutanota or ProronMail.
prefix 1 year ago
Any article that includes Norton 360 in it, automatically is removed as a valid source. Their software has been a bloated nightmare for years. In corporate world their software is dangerous as it missed a LOT. Replacing with other solutions makes you aware of how much it misses.
It really is that bad of a product. When you lose up to 33% of resources because of it, you must uninstall.
prefix 1 year ago
The 5 best antivirus software of 2021?
Is this a joke?
I had trouble with them… not good experience… ha ha
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, AuSS. No, I’m afraid that’s not a joke. I’d love to hear about the antiviruses that you love most, though. Have a good day!
prefix 1 year ago
I can’t imagine my life without gaming. Actually, I spend a fortune on games, however, I don’t want to spend money on antivirus. They are expensive and not always needed ( on the daily basis). Suggest the best free antivirus for gaming. I sometimes download stuff for games (skins, mods, and so on) and websites mostly are very suspicious and download stuff at my own risk.
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hey, Leon. As there are not that many good free antiviruses, I’d consider choosing from our list of best free antivirus software for 2021.
prefix 1 year ago
Can someone explain the difference between antivirus and antimalware? Antivirus is detecting, blocking, and removing viruses, malware, and ransomware, as well as preventing identity theft and block phishing and fraud. Isn’t antimalware the same? It’s so confusing.
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Dear Jourdan,
There is some confusion with these terms. Technically, malware is any type of software that does something bad to you. This includes viruses, Trojans, ransomware, and so on. However, there are plenty of products named Antivirus, while in fact, they combat all sorts of malware. Therefore, when choosing the best antivirus software, you should look at the features and whether there’s everything that you want. Some tools might not include ransomware protection, while others might ignore adware.
prefix 1 year ago
I guess Bitdefender is not only the best antivirus but also the world’s most popular antivirus. The premium plan is not expensive, and you get a lot in one bundle. That’s why I don’t buy a VPN for example. I used Avast when I purchased my first PC, however, I’ve switched to Bitdefender. It has a very understandable UI, and when I needed some help, live support just saved me.
prefix 1 year ago
Việt Nam
Oli Oli
Oli Oli
prefix 1 year ago
you can never be too secure, right? i use a vpn, which has some ad blocks, so many suspicious websites do not even load. but the main concern is – can i have two antivirus programs on my computer? will they conflict with each other, or it will just like double protection if one antivirus didn’t find potential malware, the other will?
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Dear Oli Oli,
Thanks for the comment. You can have two antivirus programs, but they will most likely conflict with each other. In a way, it’s like using two condoms – double doesn’t always mean two times better. I’d suggest adding a password manager to your security suite instead. Stay safe!
prefix 1 year ago
i always thought that the answer to do smartphones need antivirus is no. i mean, i rarely download anything to my phone from suspicious places. however, i was so wrong! i visited one website and something automatically went downloading 🙁 my son when was playing with my phone installed it (simply clicked yes-yes-yes) and my phone went to brick mode.i had to install software from zero. from that moment – always use antivirus on my phone, on my pc, and even on the tablet.
prefix 1 year ago
My old man is so bored with this quarantine that he decided to pull out his old dusty Thinkpad. It takes eons to load, runs as fast as a crippled tortoise yet sounds like a jet engine. I don’t understand why he doesn’t get a new one.
Anyway, now he’s going to dive head first into the new internet. I’m a bit concerned, but I can’t stand over his shoulder all the time and tell him to not click on some weird links. And there’s no way that he would pay for a program. So, long story short – I’m looking for the best free antivirus for older computers. Any ideas?
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Dear RockerChell,
Well, it seems that your dad is not yet ready to let it go 🙂 Convinging him into installing Panda Dome should work. Good luck!
Eddy Hepburn
Eddy Hepburn
prefix 1 year ago
Ok, here’s the thing – I got a Macbook Air for Christmas. Now, I’m not really a big fan of Apple so I never really used their products that much in the past, but I have a feeling this might change. I was told that Macs have better security than Windows, but I’m not convinced. I’d feel better with some extra security layers. Problem is – I don’t know what to choose. Do you have any suggestions on what’s the best antivirus scanner for mac? Thanks for reading and I hope you’ll get back to me!
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Eddy. You’re right about not trusting your online security on Mac alone. As always, you can try a free antivirus first. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus, Kaspersky Anti-virus, and Avira Antivirus can all be great for macOS.
Duncan N.
Duncan N.
prefix 1 year ago
All these articles about hacks got me a bit concerned. I could use a program that would protect all of the devices in my house. What do you think is the best antivirus for multiple pcs? And would I need a different program for phones or tablets? So many devices are connected to the internet, yet I’m not sure if a VPN on my router would be enough protection.
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hey, Duncan! Thanks for stopping by. While using a VPN is a big step towards securing your home network, there are still many potential threats that only a reliable antivirus can handle. In your case, I’d suggest McAfee Total Protection. It works on both desktop and mobile devices, comes with plenty of features, and allows to easily manage all devices that are connected to wifi.
Phillip Hedley
Phillip Hedley
prefix 1 year ago
So my grandma decided that she needs a laptop. I think it’s great that she decided to stay more connected to everyone, was always against modern tech, but the pandemic really made her reconsider. Problem is she got some really cheap one with weak specs. So I have to ask – do you have recommendations for best antivirus for low resources computers? Not something that I can test on my own beastly rig so I got to ask the professionals.
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Dear Phillip, thanks for the comment. I’m happy that your grandma has decided to go online! I suggest trying Panda Dome – it’s both free and doesn’t require the latest hardware to run smoothly.
Sherri Hardwick
Sherri Hardwick
prefix 1 year ago
Do you know what’s the best antivirus for students? A lot of us have to study remotely now and the universities don’t provide us with things like that, have to manage all of these cybercriminals by ourselves. Which is understandable I suppose, but I’d still like something that gives a good discount to students.
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Sherri. First of all, you don’t have to pay for a good antvirus! There are at least a few with great free versions. I suggest you to try Bitdefender Antivirus Plus or Kaspersky Anti-virus.
prefix 1 year ago
Hey there, Cybernews. I was curious about what you think is the best antivirus for small businesses. We’re not in the IT business, but I’ve been reading all these stories about how all kinds of businesses get attacked with ransomware or other kinds of hacks. I have an online store so it’s really important to keep it running all the time. Right now we don’t need a lot of computers secure, but that could change in the future. I want something that wouldn’t cost too much when the amount of computers increases. Perhaps there are some antiviruses that have an unlimited amount of devices?
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hello, MountainShard. Getting an antivirus for business protecion is a very good idea. In your case, the best choice is Bitdefender Antivirus Plus. It has a great free version and isn’t pricey in case you decide to upgrade. When it comes to unlimited devices, McAfee Total Protection is probably your best bet. Good luck!
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