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Best Antivirus 2021

Compare the differences between antivirus suites, and find the best one suitable for you.

What's the best antivirus?

There are many antivirus products out there.

Each claims to deliver the best security at the best price. While some may be enticing, we advise caution as some programs include hidden malware, data tracking and/or mining code. It is therefore essential to choose only brands which have been tried, tested and proven.

A good antivirus should provide protection against many types of malware, such as viruses, worms, spyware, rootkits, worms, trojans and ransomware. 

All the antivirus brands mentioned here provide industry-leading protection against malware of all kinds.

What you should look for:

VPN - Virtual Private Network

Some antivirus suites provide an additional VPN service.

A VPN protects your online privacy and can even bypass firewalls.

Password Manager

These days it's easy to forget your passwords to online accounts.

Some suites can manage your passwords with browser integration.

Parental Controls

Worried your family or children might be compromised?

Block access to certain websites so your kids stay safe on the web.

How to Pick the

Best Antivirus

  • Check the company has a good track record.
  • Read online reviews, particularly for positive reviews and negative ones.
  • Make sure the software is compatible with your computer and operating system (OS). 
  • Some products can block real-time threats on a Web browser, including pop-ups and malicious downloads.
  • Know if you need extra features, such as parental controls or a password manager.

What are our

Antivirus

Recommendations?

Here are our top 10 antivirus software products based on their high detection rates and ease of use.

Kaspersky

Total Security

Kaspersky's renowned, comprehensive anti-virus security adds impressive additional features to help you keep online secure.

Kaspersky's anti-virus engine consistently produces some of the industry's best performance against all malware forms. Kaspersky Internet Security product line is 100% successful in malware defence testing. It also contains a very useful feature, "Restore Assistant," which can help restore Windows after infection with malware.

Furthermore, Kaspersky's "Safe Money" solution offers a safe environment to protect your financial details, if you often shop online or use Internet banking services regularly. It can detect whether you're about to pay or use online banking services. It opens a stable, malware-impenetrable "sandboxed" browser window and uses Kaspersky's Virtual Keyboard to bypass keyloggers. 

It is a powerful, well-designed antivirus suite performing flawlessly in malware detection.

Norton

360 Premium

Norton Antivirus uses a single, powerful scan engine to manage all the latest and most advanced threats.

Even with Norton 360 Standard (the cheapest plan), users get real-time malware protection, unrestricted VPN access, password manager, and 10 GB protected cloud storage.  This is an extraordinary benefit for this level antivirus product.

Higher plans also have some significant advantages: more licenses, more storage space, and access to state-of-the-art parental control software.

Norton provides 100% guaranteed malware protection and a myriad of great features - limitless VPN, password manager, secure storage, and more. All Norton plans also include a 60-day money-back guarantee so you can try it risk-free.

Trend Micro

Maximum Security 2021

Japanese cybersecurity company Trend Micro offers a wide range of antivirus subscriptions, including:

  • Internet Security. Protects up to 3 devices (PC only) with malware, internet privacy and parental controls protection.
  • Maximum Security. Protects up to 10 devices (all operating systems), plus a password manager, online banking protection and system cleaning tools.
  • Maximum Security (Premium Service). Protects up to 5 devices, plus 24/7 premium support and specialized virus removal service.

All of Trend Micro's features work fine (although Norton's parental controls are much better). However, protection against phishing is where the brand stands out. Phishing scams are becoming more common and can be very difficult for antiviruses to detect. Cybercriminals can duplicate websites (a tactic known as "domain spoofing") designed to trick you into giving away your personal details and passwords. Web browsers like Chrome and Firefox come with some form of phishing protection built in. However, this basic protection is not enough.

Trend Micro's anti-phishing feature scores exceptionally well in phishing protection tests, detecting more scam websites than its competitors.

Some of the customer support options offered with the Maximum Security Premium Service subscription are impressive.

Bitdefender

Total Security

Bitdefender has grown into one of the largest players in the cybersecurity software industry, with more than half a billion users worldwide.

In addition to being a powerful and highly effective antivirus solution, with perfect detection rates, Bitdefender offers one of the most comprehensive security suites on the market.

Here are some of Bitdefender Total Security's many features:

  • On-demand, real-time protection against malware.
  • Web protection, including protection against phishing, fraud and spam.
  • Anti-theft tools.
  • Optimisation tools.
  • VPN.
  • Parental control.
  • Password manager.

The only downside is that the software is relatively complex, and installation and configuration are particularly time consuming. But if you have the time to configure it properly, you will benefit from a particularly powerful antivirus.

Avira

Avira Prime

Avira has one of the world's best antivirus engines, producing consistently flawless test scores. Avira incorporates this powerful antivirus engine in a number of Internet security packages. We selected Avira's Premium Antivirus Bundle for this comparison, Avira Prime, which includes the premium version of each Avira product, including the following features:

  • Real-time malware protection
  • Password manager
  • VPN (unlimited data)
  • Advanced ransomware protection
  • System optimisation
  • Premium Android / iOS apps

Avira's System Speedup is a very useful maintenance tool to help your computer run smoothly and free up hard drive space. 

Avira's software is also very light. Even with Avira 's comprehensive background scanning, you can use computers with little to no slowdown. Therefore, Avira Prime is an excellent investment if your machine runs slowly or is frequently out of hard drive space.

McAfee

Antivirus 2021

McAfee is a name you might already be familiar with. Over the years, they've improved their antivirus software substantially, becoming one of the best suites available on the market today.

Their threat detection model can detect and block most malware and zero-day attacks. Furthermore, McAfee includes many useful features alongside its antivirus, including:

  • Safe Web Browsing
  • Performance Optimisation
  • Password Manager
  • Permanent File Deletion

In particular, the safe web browsing filter is effective in blocking potentially dangerous downloads, mitigating the chances of getting a malware infection from the internet.

That being said, McAfee's scanning speed is slightly slower than the industry average and is outdone by providers such as Trend Micro, which complete malware scans much faster than McAfee's antivirus.

Panda

Dome Antivirus

Panda offers its smart cloud-based virus detection and user-friendly interface through 5 different subscriptions. Panda provides its powerful security solution to all users, regardless of their budget.

  • Free: Includes real-time virus protection and antivirus for Windows, plus VPN (limited to one virtual location and 150MB of data per day).
  • Essential: Adds Android and macOS malware protection, WiFi protection, and external device scanning.
  • Advanced: Adds parental controls, ransomware protection and safe browsing.
  • Complete: Includes Data Shield to encrypt your personal data, a password manager and tools to optimize your device.
  • Ultimate: Unlimited VPN access with 22 locations and priority technical support available 24/7.

There is a big price difference between the more expensive subscriptions and the entry-level ones. But with monthly subscriptions and the first month free, you can find the product that meets your needs risk-free. Each of these subscriptions offers fantastic value for money.

Even Panda Dome Free is quite good and provides real-time virus protection, something that many free antivirus products lack. We believe that Panda Dome Advanced offers the best value for money, thanks to its excellent ransomware protection and parental controls.

TotalAV

Antivirus Pro 2021

TotalAV's anti-virus engine runs on software from Avira. So, although TotalAV is a newer brand, it uses some of the market's most trusted cyber-security technologies.

TotalAV also has an easy-to-use interface. With a few clicks from your home screen, you can access all of TotalAV's functionality, making it very easy to use. If you're unfamiliar with antivirus software, you'll probably enjoy its simplicity.

TotalAV also provides several additional security features:

  • Password manager.
  • VPN.
  • Spyware and phishing protection.
  • Performance optimisation.

Most of its features are fantastic (except for phishing, which we believe requires some improvement). TotalAV's Performance Optimizer will clean up even more room than Avira 's System Optimizer. Avira has more options and is much more mature. But if you're not looking for anything "advanced," TotalAV is a good option.

Finally, all TotalAV includes a generous 30-day money-back guarantee for peace of mind.

ESET

Smart Security Premium

ESET Security provides one of the most reputable and popular options for protecting your PC. It includes a powerful anti-malware scanner and works on almost every platform, from Windows, Mac, Android and Linux.

Unlike some other antivirus programs, ESET is designed to be relatively lightweight and non-intensive on system resources. This lets your PC remain fast without the dreaded "bloat" of conventional antivirus software (similar to Kasperky in that aspect).

ESET also includes many advanced features in its premium variant, such as:

  • Bank transaction protection
  • Private photo encryption
  • Password management
  • Home network protection

However, the base model is quite basic and limited to virus protection only. The Mac, Linux and Android versions also do not provide as much functionality as the Windows variant.

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