Top 10 Antivirus Software in the World
1. Microsoft Defender
To be honest, if you practice safe computing — keeping your software up to date, using strong passwords (with the help of a password manager), avoiding unexpected emails, and not clicking suspicious links that may be phishing attempts — you should be able to avoid zero-day and ransomware attacks. If you do let your guard down, the free Microsoft Defender Antivirus software running on Windows 10 provides a malware protection safety net. It is, in fact, one of the best antivirus software options available. This free antivirus program comes standard with Windows and is activated by default. The antivirus engine performs its duties, and this antivirus solution covers the fundamentals of internet security. Microsoft releases new updates regularly. The defender also allows you to customize the level of protection you want, allowing you to block potentially unwanted apps and protect folders and files from ransomware attacks.
When you install a third-party antivirus, Windows 10 and 11 will automatically disable their own Windows Defender antivirus. If you uninstall the third-party security software, Windows will reactivate its antivirus.
2. Norton 360 With LifeLock Select
For a long time, Norton Security – now known as NortonLifeLock and no longer owned by Symantec – received high marks for virus and malware detection from AV-Test, AV-Comparatives, and SE Labs. Norton antivirus is a market leader in PC, Mac, and mobile device security software. Norton Secure VPN, Antivirus Plus, Norton 360 for Gamers, Norton 360 with LifeLock Select, and other products are available. A five-device Norton 360 subscription with LifeLock Select is normally $150 per year. This antivirus suite includes 100GB of cloud backup, safe-browsing tools, a secure VPN, password manager, parental controls, and LifeLock identity theft protection and fraud alert, in addition to malware as well as antivirus protection for your computer and mobile device
3. Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition
If you want to take a step up in PC security without breaking the bank, Bitdefender’s free antivirus software for Windows 10 and 11 is hard to beat. The Windows security software provides real-time protection against viruses, malware, spyware, and ransomware. Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is simple to install and keeps out of the way until you need it. And the security provided by this antivirus software is solid. Bitdefender antivirus software consistently receives high marks from the reputable AV-Test independent testing lab for antivirus protection and usability. The free antivirus version is only available for one Windows PC. More comprehensive protection is provided by Bitdefender Total Security or Bitdefender Antivirus Plus.
Malwarebytes does protect your computer from a virus or malware attack, scoring reasonably well in recent independent testing for malware protection. But that isn’t what Malwarebytes is known for. Malwarebytes is many people’s go-to disinfectant when they are in trouble. Protection and disinfection for one device are available for $30 per year, down from $40. A year of antivirus software costs $80 to cover five devices (any combination of Windows, macOS, and Android). Download this trial version to get the antivirus company’s free antivirus version, which “downgrades” to a no-fee on-demand cleaner with fewer features that detects and removes viruses and malware after 14 days when you run an on-demand antivirus scan.
5. McAfee Total Protection
McAfee Antivirus seems to have been around forever, first on its own in the 1980s, then as part of Intel beginning in 2010, and then again on its own when Intel spun it off in 2017. And McAfee Total Protection has been around for a long time because it consistently produces solid, modern antivirus software that protects your computer. (In recent AV-Test evaluations, it received high marks in both protection and performance.) McAfee Total Protection protects five devices against viruses and ransomware, protects against malicious websites, and includes. For the first year, you can get a password manager for $35 (usually $100). If you agree to auto-renew your antivirus suite subscription, you will gain access to McAfee ID Theft Protection Essentials, which will monitor for ID fraud.
6. Trend Micro Maximum Security
Trend Micro antivirus security, which may not be as well known to consumers due to its focus on enterprise security, quietly brings its business expertise to the home with its Trend Micro Maximum Security tools. AV-Test consistently gives Trend Micro’s software high marks for detecting zero-day attacks as well as widespread viruses and malware. Trend Micro also does an excellent job of not taxing system resources. Trend Micro’s 10-device subscription for computers and mobile devices is normally $130, but it is currently discounted to $60.
7. ESET NOD32 Antivirus
If you want something simple to set up and use, ESET NOD32 antivirus may be for you. It receives high marks for usability and provides effective virus protection. A five-device plan costs $80 per year and includes a 30-day free trial.
8. Sophos Home
Sophos Home’s free antivirus version provides virus protection for three Windows PCs or macOS devices via the company’s high-scoring anti-malware tool, as well as a 30-day trial of the company’s malware removal tool. You can cover up to ten devices with a $45 annual subscription.
Intego is the most effective macOS antivirus available. Most antivirus companies only protect Windows PCs — even competitors like Norton and Bitdefender offer far fewer features for their macOS programs than they do for their Windows versions — but all of Intego’s Mac antivirus packages were created specifically to provide high-quality internet security and optimization tools to macOS users. Intego’s antivirus engine detected all of my test malware with 100% accuracy (both macOS and PC malware). And its scans are quick, with over 800,000 files scanned in under 2 hours. Following scans take only a few minutes, thanks to Intego’s file caching system, which ignores previously scanned files (Norton uses the same technology to skip over previously scanned files)
TotalAV has an excellent antivirus scanner and a couple of really good extras, all contained within a very user-friendly dashboard, making TotalAV an especially good choice for novice and non-technical users.
TotalAV’s antivirus scanner is fast, dependable, and has near-perfect malware detection rates, thanks in part to Avira’s virus protection technology. The scanner detected 99% of all of my test malware, ranging from viruses and trojans to ransomware, with only a couple of tricky files missing (which Norton and Bitdefender managed to catch).