Computer viruses are becoming more sophisticated and potentially harmful than ever. With more and more of our lives existing digitally, having an antivirus in place is no longer just about protecting your devices, but also about protecting your livelihood and identity. Cybercriminals look to exploit vulnerable PCs to not only cause widespread damage, but to find ways to commit fraud, steal data or information, or use them to commit more cybercrimes.
An antivirus is essential for anyone wanting to protect their data and computer from intruders and malicious attacks. Think of a computer without an antivirus as a house with an open door. An open and unprotected door will attract intruders into your home. An antivirus not only closes the door, but it acts as a security guard who’s there to fend off unwanted parties from entering.
As we all know, prevention is much more effective than cure, which is why it pays to be proactive by having an antivirus on your system. Although free software provides a certain amount of protection, they are generally stripped down to the basics and don’t offer full protection. Quality anti-virus software offers enhanced protection that will detect and block viruses, spyware, malware, Trojan horses, phishing attacks, rootkits, ransomware, adware, and other cyber attacks.
If you’re stumped on what antivirus software to get, here are our top five recommendations.
Kaspersky Total Security
For ultimate protection and security, the award-winning experts at Kaspersky have earned the top spot on our list with their top-shelf and best-selling security suite – Kaspersky Total Security. This security suite packs a vast number of features that cover every aspect of security to provide top-notch protection for your devices.
Kaspersky Total Security protects devices and data with a triple-layer protection system that works around the clock. In addition to real-time protection against common and complex threats including viruses, malware, ransomware, spyware, and hackers; the Total Security suite also includes Kaspersky Safe Kids Premium, Kaspersky Password Manager Premium, File Protection, and free VPN with up to 300MB of traffic per day.
Kaspersky Total Security has excellent scores from independent testing labs and is one of the highest-rated antivirus applications on the market. As an antivirus mega-suite, it goes well beyond the essentials and offers total protection that covers all bases. If you’re looking for a comprehensive antivirus suite with perfect or near-perfect scores from testing labs, Total Security is what you’re after.
Norton LifeLock Security Deluxe 3.0
Norton is one of the best-known names in antivirus security and they’ve been protecting thousands of users and devices for many, many years now. The Norton LifeLock Security Deluxe 3.0 suite offers multiple layers of protection for your devices, as well as online security, all in a single solution.
With the Security Deluxe suite, you’ll get Real-time Threat Protection, Secure VPN, Parental Control, Password Manager, SafeCam, and Cloud Backup. It also includes DarkWeb Monitoring powered by LifeLock which patrols the dark web for your personal information and notifies you when your information is found so you can take action.
What’s more – Norton service subscribers will have Norton security experts on hand to help keep devices virus-free. If you end up with an infection that the experts can’t remove, Norton will give you a full refund. That’s their 100% virus protection promise.
ESET NOD32 Antivirus
Next up is ESET NOD32 Antivirus which provides essential antivirus protection that is dependable and discreet. Although ESET’s multilayered protection is constantly working in the background to protect devices against all types of malware and threats, users will hardly even notice because it’s designed to be fast and light.
ESET NOD32 includes a combination of features to provide well-rounded protection for your devices. Perhaps its top benefit – ESET NOD32 is renowned for being light on computer resources. Whether you’re playing games, doing a presentation, or watching movies – there’ll be no interruptions or slowdowns. NOD32 is fine-tuned to save resources for your priority needs, while still doing a great job at shielding your system from malicious attacks.
ESET NOD32 has great scores in lab tests and offers some bonuses that go beyond basic protection. It’s definitely not as comprehensive as Kaspersky Total Security or even Norton Deluxe 3.0, but if you’re more advanced with computers and cyber aware, the pay-off for a lighter system may be worth it.
Trend Micro Maximum Security
Trend Micro’s Maximum Security suite offers advanced multi-device protection that is simple, yet effective. You’ll get complete protection for all of your devices against viruses, ransomware, dangerous websites, and identity thieves; and also have the ability to restrict or filter online access for kids.
In addition to essential antivirus defences, Maximum Security includes ‘Pay Guard’ to ensure your online banking and shopping is secure; as well as ‘Fraud Buster’ which adds an extra layer of security by guarding against scams and phishing emails. It also comes with an enhanced Folder Shield which safeguards your valuable files and digital assets both locally and on cloud-synced folders.
Trend Micro Maximum Security is especially great for web protection as it’s packed full of features that protect against online threats. It also achieves great scores in anti-phishing and malicious URL blocking tests.
Kaspersky Internet Security
We couldn’t wrap up this list without including Kaspersky’s Internet Security suite on here too. As Kaspersky’s entry-level offering for both Windows and iOS, it offers less features than Total Security but still keeps your computer, online activity, and privacy covered.
Using a three-layered defence engine, the Internet Security suite works tirelessly to provide full-scale protection from cyber threats, blocking common threats like viruses and malware; as well as more complex ones such as spy apps, crypto lockers, and XSS attacks.
If you’re looking to save a bit of coin while still getting advanced protection, Kaspersky’s Internet Security offers you that choice. While it has most of the features that come with Kaspersky Total Security, you’ll miss out on valuable features such as Kids Protection, File Protection, and Password Manager, which offer additional protection against ransomware and identity theft amongst other things. Even without those features, you’re still getting comprehensive protection that’ll keep your computer and privacy safe.