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Best antivirus with VPN included in 2021

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Antivirus software and VPNs are two essential parts of the cybersecurity equation. Fortunately, most well-known antivirus providers offer a VPN as part of their security suites. After all, VPNs are excellent at protecting your data from online hackers, ISPs, and other third parties. Besides this, VPNs also have lots of other appealing benefits, including the option to bypass geo-restrictions on international streaming services.

In this guide, we will look at the best antivirus suites that include a VPN to help you decide which one to choose. So read on for everything you need to know.

Best antivirus with a VPN included

  1. Norton 360 - Best antivirus and VPN combo
  2. TotalAV - Unlimited traffic and good protection
  3. Vipre Antivirus - Most feature-rich antivirus VPN
  4. Bitdefender Antivirus - Best overall antivirus
  5. Avira Antivirus - Great free antivirus plan with VPN

📢 LIMITED OFFER: Follow the link to get 1 year of Norton for $39.99!

Do I need an antivirus with a VPN?

Yes, you will need both a VPN and antivirus software if you want to protect your devices and your privacy. This is because an antivirus program keeps your device safe from software threats, while a VPN protects your data through encryption and hides your online activities.

A VPN secures your online identity and activity from third parties by redirecting your data through a VPN server, hiding your real IP address (and the websites you're visiting) in the process. This lets you take back your privacy from your ISP, the government, hackers, and others.

VPNs are really important for keeping you safe online, but they don't serve the same function as antivirus software. An antivirus program will protect your device by preventing malware from being able to take over your system, identifying threats, analyzing, and stopping any potential threats. A VPN is necessary, but your machine is still vulnerable to malware without good antivirus software.

Best antivirus software with a VPN - our detailed list

Although most well-known antivirus providers include a VPN in some of their price plans, they tend to be limited compared to standalone services. However, there are some antivirus providers that offer valuable VPN features. Here is a list of our favorites:

1. Norton 360 - Best antivirus and VPN combo

Norton 360 banner
VPN data cap:Unlimited
Netflix unblocking:Yes
Apps:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:Get Norton, save up to 53%!

One of the oldest and most popular antivirus providers on the market, Norton Antivirus has been protecting machines from cyber threats for the best part of thirty years. And it is still living up to its reputation for excellent antivirus protection, as it currently boasts some of the best malware detection rates around. It also has a VPN included in some of its plans.

Even better, when it comes to features, Norton probably has more to offer than any other antivirus software we've tested. It offers web threat protection, a password manager, and 10 GB of PC cloud backup. It also stands out from the competition with its 100% Virus Protection Promise - if Norton fails to remove a threat, they'll give you a refund.

And as well as offering one of the best antivirus security suites on the market, it also comes with an excellent VPN that offers unlimited data, and can unblock US Netflix. It is available on Norton’s Standard plan for $29.99 for the first year. And, unlike most antivirus VPNs, Norton’s VPN is not a white label product, meaning the company itself has created it. It is also implemented within the app. As expected from such a respected tool, we experienced no IP leaks at all during our testing.

On the downside, Norton 360's VPN doesn’t come with a kill switch and blocks P2P traffic, so it is not suitable for torrenting.

Overall, if you want to combine your antivirus and VPN, you can’t do better than Norton.

2. TotalAV - Unlimited traffic and good protection

TotalAV banner
VPN data cap:Unlimited
Netflix unblocking:Yes
Apps:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:Get TotalAV, now 80% OFF!

While TotalAV is perhaps less feature-rich than Norton, it still provides excellent protection. It also offers a powerful VPN at a very reasonable price, so this is a great option if you want to use one provider for your VPN and antivirus software.

TotalAV uses Avira technology for much of its antivirus suite, including on-demand and real-time detection, anti-phishing, and a range of system optimization tools. It also offers excellent protection against ransomware and other online threats. The tool has excellent malware removal scores. You can use TotalAV on Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, and its desktop app is incredibly convenient.

But the feature that makes TotalAV stand out is its Safe Browsing VPN, which is (sadly) only available on its more expensive plans. It is included on the TotalAV Internet Security plan for $39.99 for the first year, or the TotalAV Total Security plan, which costs $59.00 for the first year. Based on Windscribe’s VPN technology, it offers unlimited data, fast speeds, and relies on the OpenVPN tunneling protocol. It has 60 server locations, which is a very impressive number, even for a standalone VPN.

Unfortunately, however, there is no VPN kill switch and it would be more trustworthy with a no-logs policy.

3. Vipre Antivirus - Most feature-rich antivirus VPN

Vipre AV banner
VPN data cap:Unlimited
Netflix unblocking:Yes
Apps:Windows, macOS, Android

Although Vipre Antivirus isn’t the most recognizable brand on the market, it has a lot to offer. Its antivirus software comes with an excellent suite of features, and its VPN is one of the best ones available through an antivirus provider.

Vipre Antivirus has an extensive security suite, including anti-spam, browsing track cleaner, webcam and microphone blocker, a firewall, and a dark web scanner. It also has real-time protection and device scans, and it boasts very good malware detection rates according to independent testers, such as AV-Comparatives.

The tool's Internet Shield VPN feature is definitely one of its biggest selling points. It uses IPVanish’s VPN technology, and you can choose between OpenVPN (UDP), OpenVPN (TCP), and IKEv2 tunneling protocols, all of which are solid options. Internet Shield has its own dedicated app that is separate from Vipre’s antivirus app.

It also comes with unlimited data and bandwidth, and it is great at unblocking geo-restrictions on Netflix. In a first for antivirus VPN features, Vipre even offers traffic obfuscation, which will help you make use of the feature in countries where VPNs are banned. However, if IPVanish is anything to judge by, it probably doesn't work in China.

Vipre’s VPN is available on its Ultimate Security Bundle pricing plan, which costs $39.99 for the first year. However, it is quite expensive after the first year, and Vipre does use a lot of CPU power while performing virus scans. But it is still an excellent option if you want to combine your VPN and antivirus software.

4. Bitdefender Antivirus - Best overall antivirus

Bitdefender banner
VPN data cap:200MB daily
Netflix unblocking:No
Apps:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:Get Bitdefender, now 60% OFF!

If you are looking for a good antivirus solution, you are unlikely to find a better option than Bitdefender. It has some of the best malware detection rates around and excellent performance on lots of different device types. And better still, it comes with a VPN.

Bitdefender offers an impressive suite of features, including real-time protection, advanced threat defense, web attack prevention, anti-phishing, and anti-fraud. It even has a free version of its antivirus software, although the free package doesn’t include the use of its VPN. If you want access to Bitdefender’s VPN, it is available with Bitdefender’s cheapest plan, Antivirus Plus, which costs $19.99 for the first year.

Bitdefender’s VPN is one of the most secure solutions included in an antivirus plan because it has a kill switch. It uses technology from Hotspot Shield to deliver a fast and secure VPN service from within the Bitdefender app. You can also get Bitdefender VPN as a separate, more feature-rich product, but you will have to pay extra for that.

When all is said and done, however, you might want to go the paid VPN route, because the feature included in the antivirus suite is limited. Most notably, it has a daily limit of 200 MB, which makes it really useful for browsing, but not much else.

5. Avira Antivirus - Great free antivirus plan with VPN

Avira antivirus banner
VPN data cap:200MB monthly
Netflix unblocking:No
Apps:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:Get Avira, now 40% OFF!

Avira Antivirus is the only provider on our list that offers a VPN with its free plan. However, it is important to note that the free plan is limited, as it has a data cap of just 500 MB a month. You also can’t select the location of the server you want to connect to, so you can’t effectively use it to unblock content from other countries.

With that said, Avira’s antivirus offering is one of the best on the market. This lightweight German software has great malware detection rates, and it is extremely user-friendly. It offers virus scans, real-time protection, and a file shredder, as well as an excellent password manager, file quarantine, and its Avira Safe Shopping plug-in.

Although Avira does have a free version, its paid plans have a lot more to offer, even if some of its more expensive plans can be quite costly. Avira's cheapest plan, Avira Antivirus Pro, comes with internet protection, email protection, and customer support.

Avira VPN uses their own technology and is implemented within the app. It is also available as a separate service, which is quite strong in its own right - definitely worth considering.

6. Surfshark Antivirus - Great VPN with an antivirus

Surfshark banner
VPN data cap:Unlimited
Netflix unblocking:Yes
Apps:Windows, Android

Usually, it's the antivirus provider that rolls out an additional VPN module. However, this time around, Surfshark VPN woke up and chose violence. The recent addition to their security product is an antivirus. If on your list of priorities, a good VPN is right there at the top, Surfshark hopes to offer you a perfect all-in-one solution with a great VPN and a solid antivirus, called Surfshark One.

The antivirus lets you can create automatic scan schedules for the full system or only specified folders. You can also exclude specific folders from scanning, which can be useful to avoid slowdowns. Whenever you launch the Surfshark app, it will refresh its antivirus database, so your antivirus will always be up to date.

As for the VPN part of it, it blows every competitor's VPN offerings out of the water. Surfshark unblocks many streaming libraries, including Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and DAZN. Moreover, you can even set it up on devices that don't support VPNs. You can configure them via their SmartPlay feature, and it will unblock US libraries without a problem.

You can also connect to 3200+ servers in 65 countries. Which is more than an average VPN bundled with an antivirus offers. Plus, their service is using secure tunneling protocols and relies on RAM-only infrastructure.

Surfshark One is a very different solution: but that's exactly why it might be being perfect for you.

How we selected and tested these antiviruses

When selecting our favorite antivirus services that come with a VPN, we:

  • Tested dozens of the top antivirus programs to find tools with the most robust features for protection from various malware threats.
  • Looked at malware detection results to make sure each antivirus program could detect any potential threats. We did this by analyzing the results from various independent lab tests, such as AV-Test, AV-Comparatives, and others.
  • Tested their VPN features to make sure that the VPN included in the antivirus package is useful, user-friendly, secure, and reliable. To do this, we took an in-depth look at the features included on the VPN, as well as the technology used to create it.
  • Analyzed the quality of the antivirus package by looking at the combination of the antivirus software and the VPN feature specifically to decide if it is a good solution. We also considered the price of the packages that include a VPN, assessing whether or not they are good value for money.

What to look for in an antivirus with a VPN

  • Price. If you are looking for an antivirus program that comes with a VPN, it is really important to choose a combined solution that offers excellent cybersecurity for a price that suits your budget. After all, antivirus programs that include a VPN tend to offer it on their more expensive plans. So you will need to make sure that paying that bit extra is worth it for you.
  • Extensive features. Take a close look at the features the included VPN has to offer. We recommend looking for one that has a decent number of servers and good security features. Some users also want a VPN to bypass region blocks on international content (e.g. the US library of Netflix or BBC iPlayer). This is possible, albeit not many antivirus VPNs are fit for the job.
  • Data caps. Watch out for data caps, as some VPNs that come with antivirus programs impose limits on how much you can download and upload. Luckily, some offer unlimited data (including a few on our list). If you want a VPN for more than light web browsing, avoiding data caps is the way to go.
  • Antivirus software. The antivirus software itself is very important. A good antivirus program will come with an extensive suite of security features, including real-time scans, anti-phishing protection, and extremely good malware detection rates.

What is the difference between antivirus and a VPN?

Antivirus software secures your device from malware through real-time protection and scanning your device for suspicious activity. Meanwhile, a VPN encrypts and redirects your internet traffic to keep your information safe from anyone who might be snooping around.

A VPN will ensure that your ISP and the government does not know what you are doing online - something an antivirus can't do. Such online privacy is particularly important if you're based in a country that has strict censorship or if your day-to-day includes sensitive activities like investigative journalism, political activism, etc. However, practically anyone will benefit from a VPN - starting from those who want to access geo-restricted content and ending with those who need encryption when working on insecure public Wi-Fi.

Both antivirus software and VPNs are important cybersecurity tools designed to protect your device and your privacy. Yet they serve very different functions, so we strongly recommend using both a VPN and an antivirus program.

How to use antivirus with a VPN

To use antivirus with a VPN, all you need to do is follow these steps:

  1. Choose an antivirus that has a VPN included. We recommend Norton 360.
  2. Download and install the app
  3. Open the app and log in if necessary
  4. Find the VPN feature if it is available within the app (some antivirus programs offer a VPN as a separate app)
  5. Choose a server to connect to (not all antivirus VPNs will let you do this)
  6. Click "Connect"

To make sure the VPN is working, look up your IP address online before connecting to the VPN - a simple Google search of "what is my IP" will do the trick. Then, connect to the VPN and check again - you should see a different IP address than before you connected. If the IP is the same as before - the VPN is not connected or there is some other malfunction.

Disadvantages of using an antivirus with a VPN

By definition, an antivirus program will prioritize its antivirus protection over any other feature it offers. Therefore, a VPN that comes with an antivirus program will likely be more limited than a dedicated VPN service.

Standalone VPNs come with a lot more features than ones included in antivirus plans. For one thing, they tend to give you access to thousands of servers across the world, and they can unblock geo-restricted content on various streaming services. They also tend to have much more robust security features, including a kill switch, a choice of tunneling protocols, and much more. You will also find that these VPNs are more likely to support torrenting, while antivirus VPNs often block P2P traffic.

Additionally, antivirus VPNs tend to impose data caps, which means that they are not suitable for anything heavier than occasional web browsing. And will also find that VPN connections with combined apps can be a lot slower than standalone VPNs.

Although we recommend using both an antivirus and a VPN, some users may only want the latter. In this case, choosing a dedicated VPN service will be both cheaper and save you the trouble of navigating a more complicated antivirus app.

With all that said, an antivirus with a VPN feature can be a great solution for many users - why not get two birds with one stone?

Is there a free antivirus with included VPN?

Although most antivirus providers that offer a VPN will include it in their more expensive packages, some programs come with a free VPN.

For example, Avira’s free antivirus plan comes with access to its VPN. However, it is certainly limited. For one thing, it comes with a data cap of 500 MB a month. This means that you can’t use it to do much more than light web browsing. It also doesn’t give you a choice of servers to connect to, so you can’t use it to unblock most region-restricted content.

As with most things, you get what you pay for with cybersecurity tools. And free VPNs tend to be so limited that you'll likely be better off paying for one that has robust security features and unlimited data.

Video review: Best Antivirus with VPN

Antivirus with VPN video review

Conclusion

If you want to use an antivirus program that comes with a VPN service, there are some outstanding options out there. However, the VPNs on antivirus packages differ greatly in what they offer and what they will cost you. These features range from sorely limited options to full-fledged VPN services that can hold their own against many standalone tools.

Antivirus software is vital for cybersecurity, but so are VPNs. They will encrypt your traffic and hide your online activities - a lifesaver (sometimes literally) in a time when data breaches are extremely common and true privacy is as rare as a four-leaf clover. Perhaps getting a two-in-one antivirus and VPN combo is the right choice for you?

FAQs


More Anti-Virus guides from CyberNews:

Best Free Antivirus Software & Protection: don't spend a dime and get the best tools for the job

Best Antivirus Apps for iPhone & iPad: increase your online safety even more with these tools

Norton 360 Antivirus Review: one of the best-known antivirus providers in-depth

Comments
ottly
ottly
prefix 2 months ago
hey, if i have a vpn do i need antivirus? i keep seeing contrasting opinions on this. i would appreciate some clarity on the matter. btw i use mac and if it’s not like 100% necessary i would like to save my money for something more useful
CyberNews Team
CyberNews Team
prefix 2 months ago
Both are good at different tasks. A VPN will help you to protect your privacy and defeating geo-blocks. Meanwhile, an antivirus will make your device harder to penetrate for malicious programs. For this reason, most antiviruses are including VPNs in their antiviruses. However, they’re still inferior to dedicated VPN provider tools.
Lucas
Lucas
prefix 3 months ago
WHich antivirus with vpn comes with password manager and could you recommend anything personally as a security expert? ty
CyberNews Team
CyberNews Team
prefix 2 months ago
Most antivirus providers include a password manager, so the chances are that you could pick whichever from the top 3 and get this feature. Though, don’t forget that most password managers are available for free. We cover these here: https://cybernews.com/best-password-managers/free-password-managers/
appee
appee
prefix 3 months ago
do you know whether any of these programs sacrifice any functionality for macOS? i heard that antivirus for mac does not work as well as PC since the system is a lot more closed
CyberNews Team
CyberNews Team
prefix 3 months ago
As a rule of thumb, all antiviruses will be more modest on macOS compared to their Windows counterparts. Yet, when it comes to the VPN features, no matter which version you pick – those will be identical across the board.
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