Antivirus Software: Ratings of Sources
Total of 13 Sources
For an explanation of how we rank reviews, see our ratings criteria page.
by Editors of AV-Comparatives.org
Our AssessmentAV-Comparatives.org is an independent, nonprofit organization that tests antivirus software. The organization only evaluates the effectiveness of programs at detecting viruses and malware, but the test report is very thorough and detailed. Tests include an on-demand scan and a difficult proactive/retrospective test that evaluates the programs' chops against viruses that aren't in their databases. The best performing software earns their Advanced+ certification.
VB100 Results Summary
by Editors of Virus Bulletin
Our AssessmentComputer magazines and specialty websites don't always conduct their own antivirus testing. Instead, they contract with organizations such as Virus Bulletin. To receive Virus Bulletin certification, an antivirus program must detect all viruses "during both on-demand and on-access scanning." It must also generate no false positives. Dozens of antivirus programs are tested, and most major brands pass the testing criteria. As a result, Virus Bulletin is helpful for ensuring your chosen software effectively prevents malware, but it's less helpful for picking the best programs overall.
The Best Antivirus for 2013
by Neil J. Rubenking
Our AssessmentPCMag.com reports on antivirus protection offered by stand-alone software and multi-application security suites. Neil J. Rubenking puts security and antivirus products through several tests and reports on the percentage of rootkits, scareware and total malware they are able to defend against, with separate results for malware blocking and removal. Independent lab results are also taken into consideration, and top performers are identified in yearly roundups.
Detailed Test Reports
by Editors of AV-Test.org
Our AssessmentAV-Test.org, an independent IT security institute, tests consumer antivirus programs on Windows-based systems. Programs are tested for usability and virus blockage and removal capabilities, with a separate score assigned for each criterion. Like Virus Bulletin, the majority of products receive certification, making AV-Test.org less useful for identifying the best antivirus programs, although you can draw your own conclusions by studying the detailed individual test results.
by Editors of and contributors to Download.com
Our AssessmentDownload.com, a service of CNET, has a good selection of reviews for stand-alone antivirus programs. Like many technology reviewers, Download.com does not always perform its own effectiveness tests; it often relies on independent lab tests for that. However, editors have a number of details on usability, including factors such as installation, interface, features, technical support and speed. Most antivirus products, including some free software, earn high ratings. Users can also chime in with their own opinions, and they can sometimes differ significantly.
Anti Malware Software Rated
by Editors of TechRadar.com
Our AssessmentBritain's TechRadar.com reviews a handful of security suites that contain antivirus components, all of which are picked up from affiliated magazines like PC Plus and Mac Format. The reviews are short, although hands-on testing has obviously been conducted. The scores assigned are very similar, with all products earning 4 to 4.5 stars.
by Contributors to Amazon.com
Our AssessmentOwner reviews are an excellent guide to issues that professional reviewers sometimes don't encounter -- such as system conflicts on a typical machine. Amazon.com users tend to favor Norton, Kaspersky and McAfee programs, as well as Intego VirusBarrier X6 for Macs. However, reviews of the newest versions aren't particularly plentiful.
Best Free Antivirus for 2013
by Daniel Graham-Smith
Our AssessmentU.K.-based PC Pro's software review knocks AVG off the top of its list for the best free antivirus software. The reviewer is especially impressed with Avast!'s ability to protect machines against 98 percent of malware attacks over a two-month test period. Avast! is awarded 5 out of 6 stars.
7 Reasons Bitdefender Antivirus Plus 2013 Dominates the Competition
by Mason Hymas
Our AssessmentA commercial site that sells software, Software Media Blog strongly endorses Bitdefender Antivirus Plus 2013 in this single-product review. The review contains solid data and detailed description of the software, its performance and its features.
Avast! 7 Free Antivirus Review
by Simon Williams
Our AssessmentThis relatively short review recommends Avast! Free Antivirus, calling it "about as comprehensive protection as you'll find without an annual subscription." In its tests, PC Advisor found that Avast! had effective shields against malware but slowed down the computer when scanning.
Mac Antivirus Detection Rates
by Editors of The Safe Mac
Our AssessmentThis website, dedicated to security on Macs, tested the ability of 16 antivirus software products to detect 51 malware threats on a computer running Mac OS X. Avast! found 43, coming in second to Sophos and tying with Dr. Web Light.
Researcher Finds Critical Vulnerabilities in Sophos Antivirus Product
by Lucian Constantin
Our AssessmentThis article profiles a security researcher who detected critical holes in Sophos, a popular antivirus software product for Mac users. Sophos, which patched the vulnerabilities, was one of the best-reviewed antivirus products for Macs.
Review: Norton Antivirus 12 for Mac
by Editors of MacExpertGuide.com
Our AssessmentMacExpertGuide.com provides a detailed, single-product review for Norton Antivirus for Mac, calling it "basic but certainly useful" and offering security tips for Mac users.