Antivirus Software Reviews
Antivirus Software Performance
In antivirus software reviews, one criterion towers above all others: The software must protect the user's system with a very high degree of success. A program that doesn't meet that standard isn't worth buying or downloading, even if it's free.
General Performance.Most people choose virus-protection software based on how well it shields their PC, not on how slick it is or how many non-virus-related bonus features it includes (such as file shredding). Based on this benchmark, antivirus software reviews assert that Norton Antivirus is one of the best antivirus programs. PC World rates it No. 1 for its excellence at detecting malware and viruses. Norton also scored very high in lab tests by PC Magazine; it didn't beat the competition in every contest but logged the best scores overall. For the best free antivirus scanning, Ad-Aware Free is the program for you. PC Magazine grants it an Editors' Choice award and tests by experts at Softpedia found that Ad-Aware Free detected more than 90 percent of malware threats. Users posting antivirus software reviews on CNET also applaud Ad-Aware Free's efficacy, noting that it blocks threats and wipes out cookies.
The two programs we identified as good antivirus protectors also exhibit muscle. McAfee has long been one of the most popular security software makers, and its AntiVirus Plus draws praise in antivirus software reviews on Amazon for basic functionalities that keep viruses and malware at bay and for signaling unsafe websites. An antivirus software review by PC Magazine hedges a bit, noting that McAfee's protective prowess in lab testing was about average -- it missed some malware threats and didn't clean up existing malware as thoroughly as it should have -- but the reviewers like the extra features, including antiphishing capabilities and a firewall (users agree). Regarding Kaspersky Lab Anti-Virus, an expert antivirus software review on PC World extols its ability to sniff out malware, particularly when blocking live attacks, as well as its cleanup efforts. On the other hand, the review site Antivirus Ware points out that updates to the virus definition database occur less frequently than is the rule with other well-regarded antivirus shields.
Some antivirus programs just don't seem to provide adequate protection. Bitdefender Antivirus Pro does a fine job defending against phishing attacks and detecting rootkits, according to PC Magazine's review, although it can't seem to completely remove them or stand tall against other malware, either in terms of blocking attacks or removing infestations. Users offer up harsher assessments, with one reporting on PC Magazine that viruses have multiplied on his computer and others commenting in reviews on Amazon that the program sent messages indicating the computer was vulnerable and removed a backup program that it misidentified as a virus. A few reviews on Amazon, however, champion Bitdefender for its reliability. Trend Micro Titanium Antivirus also attracts strong criticism from expert and user reviewers. Antivirus Ware, for example, says this latest version of the software is disappointing, partly because it's so bare-boned and automated but largely because it's not very effective. The site's review further notes that independent testing labs found that Trend Micro Titanium didn't adequately detect viruses or malware, an assessment likewise stated by PC Magazine, which adds that it's particularly weak in the face of older threats and already-present infections.