What is the Best Antivirus Software of 2020?
Staying safe online has never been more challenging. Even large brands like Facebook and Apple are fighting security problems. You don’t have to abandon hope, though. Instead, take a few minutes to choose the best antivirus software for your situation.
Is a Free Antivirus Plan Good Enough?
Choosing a free antivirus software program is a good choice in a few cases. If you are only concerned about your data in a single device, a free software solution is enough. However, if you are looking for an antivirus software solution to protect your entire family—especially children—you will probably benefit from the added features (e.g. website filtering and protection for online banking) available in paid products. Finally, consider if you like the peace of mind of having support available. If you want to be able to call someone to ask for security tips or to do virus removal, you are not going to get that level of support with a free product.
Why Do I Need Antivirus Software?
Why do you still need to bother with antivirus software in 2020? Here are 2 reasons why you should pay attention. Imagine the pain of losing all your data for days or weeks.
Think back to the last time you forgot your smartphone at home. You probably felt disconnected and maybe even anxious. If you lose all of your data due to a virus, you will experience 10 times the pain. You’ll need to call in expensive professionals to clean your computer, and there’s no guarantee they can save all of your data.
It’s easier to just take a few precautions in order to protect yourself. Take the next few minutes to review the options available and choose one to try out. Many antivirus software comes with a free trial, so you can see if you like the software before you purchase it.
The Best Antivirus Software of 2020
TotalAVs a multi-platform antivirus solution that can protect multiple computers. Compared to some of the other options on the market, Total AV has a higher price point ($99-$149 regular price depending on the edition you select). In addition to antivirus scans, Total AV offers ransomware protection, web browser protection and protection against phishing scams. The premium edition of the product offers 24/7 support. That always available support option is valuable if you regularly run into virus and security problems.
In the past, antivirus software had a bad reputation for slowing computers down to a crawl. Total AV addresses that challenge with 2 features: system boost and disk cleaner. By regularly using those features, you can keep your computer running smoothly. Speaking of productivity, Total AV also provides a password vault so you can stop relying on those scraps of paper to keep track of complicated passwords.
Some of Total AV’s key features include:
- Provides protection for iOS, Android, Mac and Windows devices
- Stops phishing emails
- Prevents aggressive adware on websites.
Based in Russia, Kaspersky Lab has become a popular antivirus software solution since it was established in 1997. Kaspersky is a good option for customers who want the option of a pure antivirus solution. Of course, you can also get full-featured solutions to protect multiple devices and mitigate threats beyond viruses. Note that the company also offers a specialized level of protection for online banking so you can make transactions online without concern. In addition to a free trial for its advanced products, the company also offers a basic free product for antivirus protection.
What else does Kaspersky do well? The company offers protection for both desktop and mobile devices. In addition, you can purchase 2 years of protection up front and auto-renewal, so you never need to worry about losing your protection. Kaspersky has also performed well in multiple antivirus and security software tests by Virus Vulletion, ICSA Labs and AV-Comparitives. Successfully competing in so many evaluations demonstrates the company’s commitment to high security standards.
Some users may be nervous about the fact that Kaspersky is based in Russia. To respond to these concerns, the company has established a data center in Switzerland for added protection.
Some of Kaspersky’s key features include:
- Parental controls and password manager offered in the advanced product (“Total Security”)
- Offers a 30-day trial period so you can find out which product suits you best
- Free products offered include Kaspersky Security Cloud (protects against malware)
Norton Antivirus has been around for decades so you will be in good hands with this product. In addition to standard antivirus protection, Norton also helps you prevent viruses from touching your computers by offering a firewall. For parents concerned about the internet activities of their children, Norton also offers child protection features to keep your family safe. Higher priced Norton products come with support so you can ask questions and request virus removal whenever you need it.
Norton stands out from the competition when it comes to customer service and support. The company offers a 100% guarantee—they will keep your devices virus-free and give a refund if they are unsuccessful. If you value the ability to get help and support with antivirus and malware questions, Norton is an excellent option.
Norton’s LifeLock protection offering is an excellent way to supplement traditional antivirus software protection. After all, what happens if your online identity is compromised? Norton has software and insurance coverage to help you through those problems.
Some of Norton’s key features are:
- Advanced protection for financial transactions
- Offers a free malware and virus removal tool
- Over 30 PC Magazine Editors’ Choice Awards in 2017
- Offers antivirus protection for multiple devices: laptops, tablets and smartphones
Conclusion: Your Next Step—To Choose The Best Antivirus Software
To pick the right antivirus software for your needs, answer a few questions. How many devices do you need to protect (e.g. just your personal PC or everyone in your home)? Do you have the budget for additional security protection (usually a maximum of $100-$200 per year)? Based on your answers, choose 2 antivirus software solutions from this article to look into and then install the one that looks the most appealing.