Best Antivirus Protection

With so many antivirus software programs on the market, it’s hard to know which is right for you. With new scams and increased amount hacks popping up all the time, it’s important to protect your personal information and devices.

We’ve picked our Top 5 best contenders when it comes to Antivirus Software.  We’ve made it easy by breaking down the prices, pros, and cons, and giving my top overall pick.


Why install Antivirus Software and Apps?

As technology improves and grows every day, so does the chance of your private information getting hacked.

We’ve talked about it before, but sometimes you’ll receive an email or text message that looks legitimate, when in fact it’s an attempt to get you to click and inadvertently install malware onto your computer.  The goal of antivirus software is simple: to prevent, detect, and remove any malware. Cybercriminals create malicious software with the intention of damaging or interrupting the data on your device.

It’s the best layer of protection between you and the malicious attacks that target all of our devices.


CyberGuy’s Top Choices for Antivirus Software:

Editor’s Choice: TotalAV – [BEST CHOICE WINNER]


  • Easy setup
  • Paid users receive real-time protection
  • Phishing scam protection
  • Ransomware Protection
  • System tune-up tools
  • Disk cleaner (find out which files may be wasting space and remove from your computer)
  • Browser manager and cleaner
  • Protects Windows, Mac, Android & iOS Devices
  • Customer service is very prompt


  • Not really a con, but additional features like VPN and password vault come in higher-tiered plans
  • Only protects up to 6 devices on the most expensive version


  • Up to 6 devices with the Total Security package (Scroll to bottom of page to select different packages).  This is the package I chose and use for my family’s protection based mostly on the number of devices we need to protect.









  • Offers a free, yet limited version for desktop and mobile.  (free isn’t always better)
  • Research showed Bitdefender blocked 100% of threats last year
  • Offers great features including Anti-fraud and Anti-phishing (they help stop the problem before it begins)


  • Customer service isn’t as easily available to free users, and it isn’t free for paid users
  • Installation isn’t as quick – it is a bit of a process to get set up
  • macOS support is available only with paid plans


  • Bitdefender Total Security protects up to 5 devices per year
  • MacOS, Windows, iOS and Android device protection available




Norton 360 


  • Competitive pricing (especially for just one device)
  • Offers VPN on some plans
  • Norton’s Virus Protection Promise guarantees full protection from any viruses or malware or your money back


  • Not as strong protection on iOS devices
  • Safe search feature could use improvement
  • Only protects 1 device on lowest plan.


  • Norton 360 Deluxe protects up to 5 PCs, Macs, smartphones or tablets
  • Available for Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, and for PC Gaming devices





  • Small-business friendly
  • Easy to install
  • Offers a Browser Guard which you can download and add to Chrome, Firefox, Edge, or Safari on Mac computers, and blocks trackers while browsing websites
  • Has a VPN plan available in their higher-tiered plan


  • Doesn’t offer as many additional features as other Antivirus software
  • Real-time protection only available in paid-for version and doesn’t have as high a performance rating as other programs.   I note this because many users flock to the free version of this antivirus program. The item to note per their free download page is “After 14 days, your devices and data will not be protected in real-time.”  If you’re going to protect your devices, you’ll want to keep your software up to date looking out for the latest threats. The paid plans are the way to go.


  • You can protect 5 devices with a Premium plan
  • Available for Windows, Mac, Android, Chromebook, iOS



More ways to protect your devices and your identity


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Stephen Semo February 14, 2022 - 4:08 am
I’ve been using Zone Alarm Extreme Security for more than a decade with absolutely no issues. Given them a look next time.
Arthur Werry February 15, 2022 - 12:51 pm
I've used BitDefender for years and have never been charged for customer service with my paid version. They have always been very helpful.
Cynthia Watson February 16, 2022 - 5:37 am
I have not had a paid subscription to an antivirus since I have a Mac. But lately I was feeling vulnerable so I got the old stand by Malware Bites. They saved me numerous times when I had Microsoft computers so I went with that. Do you feel they are sufficient ?
Kurt Knutsson February 19, 2022 - 9:13 am
Hi Cynthia - as a mac user, I've used the free version of Malwarebytes in the past and find it to be a good, but not great solution. Back then I considered anti-virus security software as a nice utility to fend off nuisances. Today, security threats are far more pervasive and can do much more deep damage especially financial. It's no longer a matter of if, but when your devices will come under attack. Would you drive with your seatbelt fastened and have airbags in your car if you knew an accident was not just possible, but inevitable? That's how I see security and privacy attacks - an accident waiting to happen. I want the best reasonable protection. You should too.
Glenn Winslow February 19, 2022 - 7:57 am
What is your opinion of PC Matic? Love your tech info Thank you
Kurt Knutsson February 19, 2022 - 8:53 am
Hi Glenn - we included the top tier anti-virus security performers in our review. We did not publish any data from anti-virus solutions that did not meet strong standards in performance, reliability, affordability and most of all, how well the company supports and robustly maintains its ability to identify threats while not interfering or blocking the good stuff on our devices. Hope that helps.
Eric February 25, 2022 - 6:05 am
What is your opinion of Kapersky anti-virus software? How does it compare to Norton anti-virus
Kurt Knutsson February 25, 2022 - 6:17 am
Kaspersky products were banned from all U.S. government departments in 2017 by the US Dept of Homeland Security over allegations that the Russian-based company had engaged with the Russian Federal Security Service. Prior to that time, Kaspersky had consistently ranked in the top ten list of best malware detection software. I no longer recommend security solutions that originate from countries where government control could itself pose a risk. Those countries notably include China, Russia, Iran and North Korea.
Joyce Cowen March 26, 2022 - 6:31 am
Thank you so much for your information on Scams. I currently have antivirus protection till Nov. 2022, Kaspersky. Do I need to uninstall this software before I install the new one you suggested, Total Av?
John Kimel March 6, 2023 - 7:46 am
Hope this isn't a really dumb question, but can you (or is there an advantage to) run two different anti-virus programs on the same desktop at the same time?
Kurt Knutsson March 7, 2023 - 5:57 pm
Hi John. Not a dumb question at all! Please take a look at my article in the link that follows which will explain why you can't run 2 antivirus programs at once:
Cynthia Kathleen Conuel September 23, 2023 - 7:10 am
I am not that computer savvy. I read your column every day. Appreciate the help.
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