Which is the best antivirus for Windows

The best virus protection

March 16, 2021 The best protection programs against Trojans, ransomware, spyware and other Internet threats in the test by COMPUTER BILD. With a click on the product name you can call up current prices, technical data and additional pictures of the product.

  • Best virus protection
  • Second best VPN
  • Lots of extras
  • Important extras are missing
  • bad terms and conditions
  • Good virus protection
  • Best additional equipment
  • Hardly slows down the PC "
  • Weak protection without internet
  • Bad low volume VPN
  • Best virus protection
  • Error-free laboratory test
  • Hardly slows down the PC
  • Hardly any false positives
  • Lots of false positives
  • Weak protection without internet connection
  • Best protective equipment
  • Little hunger for resources
  • Important extras are missing
  • Somewhat cumbersome program structure
  • Cumbersome operation
  • Important extras are missing
  • Weak protection without internet
  • Important extras are missing

Comparison: the best virus protection

Surfing the Internet, sending messages and e-mails using a PC, tablet, notebook or smartphone is pure gamble without an anti-virus program. Malware is circulating in abundance and hackers are constantly developing new malware that taps your data in a wide variety of ways and paralyzes devices. Good antivirus programs ensure extensive protection and come with numerous additional functions for safe surfing. Programs such as Avast Ultimate, Kaspersky Total Security and Norton 360 Premium are constantly being scrutinized in test laboratories.

Internet security suites put to the test

COMPUTER BILD regularly tests and compares the various programs in terms of recognition rate, operation and equipment (click here for the large comparison test 2021). The test laboratory AV-Comparatives is an independent service provider in the field of computer security and antivirus research and supports you with antivirus program tests. The most popular anti-virus programs include Bitdefender, Kaspersky, Avast, Norton, and Avira. Programs like G Data and Eset are also very common. The following factors play a role in the virus scan comparison:
  • Detection rate: The best internet security programs detect a large proportion of malware. From viruses, ransomeware, adware, Trojans and keyloggers to browser hijackers - all programs have an extremely high detection rate of more than 99.9%. Virus scanners should also have an update function so that new virtual threats can be recognized and combated.
  • Operation: Good antivirus programs can be operated intuitively. Current threats and the current device status are displayed via a clear interface. Ideally, the optimal protection is set from the outset and you don't have to do much, even as an inexperienced user. At the same time, you have the option of configuring the security settings for individual devices and / or functions yourself.
  • Additional functions: The best programs are not just virus scanners, they also come with extensive additional functions. Some providers have a firewall, e-mail and anti-phishing protection, parental controls, rescue CD, VPN or password manager in their package.
  • Virus scanner opponents repeatedly complain that the program makes the computer too slow. The truth is that extensive protection also means additional system load - however, good protection programs hardly manage to slow down the PC despite high performance. However, current virus scanners from Avast, Kaspersky, Eset, Bitdefender and Avira have almost no effect on the system speed.
  • Licenses and prices for antivirus programs: There are differences between the best antivirus programs in terms of license size and pricing: You can either purchase a license for just one PC, laptop or tablet or a license that covers several devices for one or several years. You can get a good basic protection with the free Windows Defender, but the flagships like Avast Ultimate or G Data Total Security cost. The prices per license differ greatly from provider to provider. Note: some programs are only available as a subscription that is automatically renewed. Those who want to protect their devices over a long period of time can take advantage of the annual virus protection subscription. However, licenses that you purchase for one or more years at a one-off price are often cheaper and, above all, more transparent.

Detect and remove malware

Hackers are always finding new ways to smuggle malware onto a computer. For this purpose, e-mails are sent, supposedly useful programs are offered for download or security gaps in software that is already installed are exploited. Among the viruses, Trojans and ransomware are particularly feared. How to recognize this malware and how to remove it:

Detect and remove Trojans

The Trojan got its name from the Greek myth of the same name: Greeks besieged the city of Troy and smuggled a large, wooden horse in which soldiers were hiding into the city, which could later be attacked and defeated from within. The malware also makes use of this trick: You download supposedly useful software, a picture or another e-mail attachment to your computer. If you run the virus on your computer, the Trojan will install various malware: Keyloggers record your keystrokes so that, for example, passwords can be read. Sniffers are "scouts" who analyze data on a computer or tablet. So-called backdoor programs allow you to control your PC remotely.

In order to protect yourself against a Trojan, you should not only use an up-to-date antivirus program, but also be careful with attachments in e-mails from senders you do not know. Warnings and invoices as well as dubious offers by e-mail should make you sit up and take notice. If the Windows extensions .docx or .zip appear in the name of e-mail attachments, this also indicates a Trojan. If Norton 360, Kaspersky or another virus protection program detects a Trojan, it sounds an alarm and usually removes it automatically.

Detect and remove spyware

A Trojan horse can bring spyware onto your PC: This software spies on your users and keystrokes. The term browser hijacker is a program that manipulates your web browser and creates shortcuts on your desktop. Signs of malware on your computer include pop-up windows with advertisements, a new homepage in your browser that cannot be changed, search results from Google and Co. are displayed strangely, and new icons simply appear on your desktop. In addition, updates are simply canceled by your antivirus program and entries are deleted from the firewall. By the way: Adware is often equated with spyware. However, this is only partially true, because adware is also used to display advertising and collect user data, but it often does not pursue any criminal intent. Spyware aims to steal data. Adware is therefore the more harmless version and, strictly speaking, is not malware. Of course, these programs can still be annoying and undesirable. You remove adware the same way you remove spyware.

Optimal Virus Protection: You Can Do It

When you have decided on the right Internet security suite, there are a few more things you can do yourself to optimally protect yourself against malware:
  • Always keep your antivirus and operating systems up-to-date. Updates should be installed as soon as they are released in order to close security gaps.
  • Be suspicious of unknown senders, strange URLs, and free offers that you haven't explicitly requested. Unfortunately, typographical errors are only the tip of the fraud iceberg - professional hackers sometimes send very real-looking emails from your bank, for example. If you are asked to enter personal data, it is best to delete the email immediately.
  • Use strong passwords made up of numbers, lowercase and uppercase letters. Don't use the same password everywhere, even if it's convenient.