The purpose of antivirus (AV) software is to detect, block, and/or remove malicious software from computers and networks. AV software is an essential component of any cybersecurity system, as it is often the first line of defense to prevent malicious software from taking over the system. The software provides protection to a computer or network and keeps malicious code or viruses from harming other devices.
Many people have been affected by a data breach. Individuals’ personal information, such as Social Security numbers, birth dates, bank account numbers, and credit card numbers, is at risk. It can then be accessed through the dark web and used to ruin your financial life. Often, the personal information of those with a good credit score can be sold for a relatively low price on the dark web.
The cost of cyberattacks on companies is also high. The costs associated with compromised records, mitigating an attack, downtime and repairs have skyrocketed. Making sure you have the right antivirus software installed at home or in your business is one step you can take to avoid becoming a statistic. Antivirus software now provides malware and other attack protection beyond detecting viruses. There are hundreds of antivirus software solutions available, so it’s hard to decide which is right for you. Here are the 6 best Antivirus Software of 2021.
The 6 Best Antivirus Software of 2021
Table of Contents
- Bitdefender Antivirus Plus: It is best overall.
- Norton 360 With LifeLock: It is best for Windows.
- Webroot SecureAnywhere for Mac: It is best for Mac.
- McAfee Antivirus Plus: It is best for multiple devices.
- Trend Micro Antivirus+ Security: It is best for premium option.
- Malwarebytes: It is best for malware scanning.
1. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus
It is the best overall antivirus software because its paid version provides the most comprehensive protection.
- Detection of ransomware
- Offers a “Do Not Track” option to improve data privacy
- Secure password manager
- Regular updates with a subscription
- VPN is available, but requires a separate subscription
Founded in 2001, Bitdefender is a computer security company headquartered in Bucharest, southern Romania. With offices around the world, it employs over 1,600 people. It is ideal for home users who lack technical skills and those seeking basic protection against threats. Bitdefender Plus is the company’s entry-level antivirus software.
Since viruses aren’t the only cybersecurity risk, Bitdefender Plus includes an array of security-first features, covering ransomware prevention, monitoring online purchases and web-based transactions, and password management, allowing users to generate unique passwords for every account, all managed from a single dashboard. The Bitdefender Plus application is available for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS.
There is a free version of Bitdefender that provides real-time detection, advanced threat defense, web attack prevention, and fraud and phishing protection. In the paid version, Safepay for financial transactions is included, along with multilayer ransomware protection and vulnerability assessments. There is also the option of a virtual private network (VPN) with an additional fee.
It costs $39.99 for one year of coverage. You can try it for free for 30 days.
2. Norton 360 With LifeLock
With its PC maintenance features, Norton 360 with LifeLock continues to improve on its history as a top antivirus option for Windows computers.
- Firewalls and backups for PC protection
- Protection against malware that is excellent
- Secure password manager
- Protect yourself from identity theft with LifeLock
- Detection of ransomware could be improved
- Slows down the computer during full scans
- The most expensive offering
A Norton antivirus software was first introduced in 1991 under the Symantec umbrella. Symantec acquired LifeLock in 2018, and in 2019, after the business division of the company was sold, the brand changed to NortonLifeLock. It is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona.
As one of the most successful Windows antiviruses, Norton 360 with LifeLock has maintained to form on its history of protecting Windows computers. LifeLock’s identity theft protection alone makes it a superior product. The product comes in several versions, so users can choose what features they need. However, even the lowest level includes PC maintenance utilities (for example, the ability to make bootups faster) and 2GB of cloud backup. With Norton 360 Standard, you get dark web monitoring, a VPN, and 100 GB of cloud storage.
As the package level increases, the amount of cloud storage increases. With the mid-range Norton 360 with LifeLock Select, you can protect up to five devices (including Macs) and get 100GB of cloud storage for $149.99 a year. Additional features include parental controls, school time controls, VPNs for all devices, and webcam protection. For $84.99 per year, Norton Antivirus Plus includes one license.
3. Webroot SecureAnywhere for Mac
The fast scanning capability and strong phishing detection make Webroot SecureAnywhere for Mac the best security software for Macs.
- Phishing detection is excellent
- Rapid virus scanning
- Identifies malicious links during online searches
- Testing data is limited
The company is based in Broomfield, Colorado, and also has offices in Japan, Europe, Australia, and California. The company was founded in 1997, and its first antivirus software product was released in 2006. The company was obtained by OpenText in 2019.
We recommend Webroot SecureAnywhere for Mac as the finest antivirus protection for Mac computers. Most viruses are attacked at Windows computers, but Macs can also be infected by malware, ransomware, phishing attacks, or viruses specifically designed for Apple devices.
With very little footprint on your computer’s operating system, this software provides fast security scans and is one of the finest at detecting phishing. Users can receive alerts on new threats by providing their email address when installing Webroot. Its interface is more comparable across platforms than other antivirus software, so it is more convenient for those who use both i.e. Windows and Mac. Webroot for Mac doesn’t come with a firewall, which is the main difference.
Webroot also offers SecureAnywhere antivirus products alone for Macs and PCs, internet security (for Macs and PCs), and internet complete with backup storage.
In the current long-term sale, one year of Webroot SecureAnywhere Antivirus is available for $29.99 instead of $39.99. The price applies to one device. A money-back guarantee is available for 70 days.
4. McAfee Antivirus Plus
Our top recommendation for multi-device protection is the McAfee Antivirus Plus subscription, which offers protection for every device in the home for a reasonable price.
- Offers protection for both Android and iOS devices
- A good malware detection system
- Having a good firewall
- The price includes a number of bonus features
- There are fewer features on Apple products
One of the benefits of McAfee Antivirus Plus is its ability to detect the increasing number of devices used in households, which could include four or more different operating systems. Even though the protection and features are better for Windows and Android, the protection is still sufficient for all devices, so families do not have to purchase multiple antivirus subscriptions.
Secure web browsing, antivirus, and up to 10 devices are included in the basic package. The MTP 10 Device plan includes full network protection, password manager, encrypted storage, as well as identity theft protection for one year for 10 devices. One-year subscriptions are also available for unlimited device protection.
In the first year, the basic subscription costs $24.99 and then $79.99 per year after that. A family plan for MTP 10 costs $34.99 for the first year and then $119.99 thereafter. The unlimited device protection plan costs $69.99 for the first year and $159.99 after that. Each plan comes with one to five VPN licenses. You can get your money back within 30 days.
5. Trend Micro Antivirus+ Security
Trend Micro Antivirus+ Security is the pick for best premium options because of its aggressive antivirus system at an acceptable price.
- An affordable price
- Dashboard with easy-to-use features
- Ensures the safety of online financial transactions
- Several bonus features
- Intensive on resources
- Most versions only run on Windows
Established in 1988 in the U.S., Trend Micro now has its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. It has operations worldwide and many partnerships within the tech industry. With Trend Micro Antivirus+ Security, you won’t only get an advanced antivirus system at an acceptable price, but you’ll also get layered ransomware protections, a firewall booster, and Pay Guard browser, which provides the highest level of safeguarding for online shopping and banking.
Additionally, Trend Micro’s Advanced AI Learning technology identifies new ransomware strains and other appearing warnings and terminates them before they harm the computer network in every version of this antivirus software. Password management and preservation are only available to the highest tier of the product family.
Antivirus software is the best choice for people who don’t want to mishandle their security. This Trend Micro version is Windows-only, but they also offer a Mac version. Their highest tier plan supports mobile platforms as well.
The cost of Antivirus+ Security for one year is $29.95. Money back guarantees are offered for 30 days.
In terms of malware removal on demand, Malwarebytes is the top choice for scanning and removing malware.
- Eliminates malware
- Detects and blocks ransomware
- Detection in real-time
- The free version has much less protection and features
The company is based in Santa Clara, California, and specializes in protecting mobile devices and home computers. Malwarebytes free version has some limitations, but it can still be useful. There are few modern features and protections in this program-it simply identifies and eliminates malware.
Malwarebytes does a significant job capturing, quarantining, and eliminating malware that’s causing havoc on your system. This free version allows you to run a full or quick scan whenever you need, and it will create a report about your system.
Among its features, Malwarebytes’ paid version provides 24/7 monitoring, patches vulnerabilities until they are fixed, blocks ransomware, and protects against infected websites. It can also be applied as an antivirus program. Free versions of the software scan for and remove malware on-demand; however, they should always be applied in conjunction with more comprehensive antivirus software.
Although the product is available for multiple operating systems, the premium version is only compatible with Windows. There is a one-year subscription fee of $29.99. A 14-day trial is available, but you can apply the free version on your computer at any time.