Antivirus Software Reviews

Computers have transformed nearly every aspect of our lives, from helping students learn and assisting in monitoring patients in hospitals and controlling crucial manufacturing processes. This increased dependence on computer devices has also led to an increase in cyber-attacks, such as malware, viruses and ransomware. Antivirus software can detect these threats and prevents the computer from being damaged or stealing personal data.

When you are choosing an antivirus program, you should consider its virus scanning capabilities and whether it comes with a firewall, and how it does in independent lab tests. It is also important to consider the quality of its customer service, how often the program updates and the number of devices it is able to secure. Certain programs, like Norton, have additional features to protect your online privacy and help prevent identity theft.

Top programs offer multiple protection options. They include heuristic detection which looks for signs that are typical of malware or viruses and signature matching, which compares files against a list of known malicious code. Some programs also use sandboxing, which separates the suspicious files and puts them in a sealed virtual environment, where they are unable to do any harm.

Some of the most effective antivirus software is available for download. However, they may not have the same features as paid-for alternatives. Bitdefender’s premium edition comes with parental controls, a file shredder and password manager, however its free version scored very well and comes with a firewall. Malwarebytes, whose free version scored top marks in AV Test for 2023, failed our usability test. Intego Mac Security X9 comes with a powerful combination of tools, including VirusBarrier and NetBarrier, which was able to identify and eliminate the majority of malware-related threats during our test.

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