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AV Test Lab and Consumer Review Averages


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Results overview

There are a few interesting takeaways from the data that may interest consumers.

First, it should be noted that almost every AV tool on the market that was tested by the 5 testing labs performed similarly with regard to Protection. That means that almost any tool you purchase is likely going to identify, quarantine, and clean malware from your system with a high degree of success. Of the tools tested by the labs, only 4 received sub-par scores:

  1. ViriT eXplorer PRO: 40.83/100
  2. Webroot Antivirus: 72.75/100
  3. Rising Security Cloud Client: 77.86/100
  4. Quick Heal Total Security: 79.40

All others received aggregated scores of 90/100 or better. This means consumers’ best option is to consider more carefully the other areas of value: Performance, False Positives, Price, and the number of devices allowed per purchase.

Performance

Only two testing labs (AV-Test, AV-Comparatives) measured the AV tools they tested for system impact. Of those tested, the top 3 tools were:

  • eScan Internet Security Suite
  • Ahnlab V3 Internet Security
  • Panda Free Antivirus

Ahnlab is not available to consumers, however, and while Panda Free Antivirus scored well in performance, its false positives score was extremely subpar. That makes eScan Internet Security Suite the best in this category.

False Positives

Four testing labs used False Positives as a measure for testing. Not every tool showed up in every lab test, however, and we had to make some adjustments particularly for AV-Comparatives, which did not create an average score for that category but instead offered only gave a raw number (e.g., the total number of false positives each tool sent back).

25 tools in this category scored a perfect 100, meaning they did not send back any false positives. However, when you consider the Performance and Protection scores, the top 3 tools in this category are:

  • eScan Internet Security
  • Vipre Advanced Security
  • AVG Internet Security

eScan comes out on top in this category as well, although both Vipre and AVG performed noticeably better in the Protection category, whereas eScan scored a perfect 100 Performance and False Positives. It should be noted, however, that the only other tool to get a perfect 100 in two categories was AVG Internet Security, which scored 100s in both Protection and False Positives.

Price (free)

Quite obviously, most consumers prefer a free tool versus a paid one. And indeed, many of the free tools on the market are high-quality options worth considering.

The best free antivirus tools on the market, based on score averages across all three categories, include:

  • Tencent PC Manager
  • AVG Free Antivirus
  • Avast Free Antivirus
  • Avira Free Security Suite

Consumers may also want to consider using Microsoft Windows Defender, which comes loaded with any new installation of Windows, or Panda Antivirus Free. Those two tools score well in the Protection and Performance categories, but poorly in False Positives.

Price (paid)

As far as low-cost options, however, there are a few stand-out AV tools that may offer great value and quality, while there are some notable exceptions that are far too pricey for what they deliver.

Among the paid tools, the best include:

  • NANO Antivirus: $12.03 for 500 days (may not be available to US or UK consumers)
  • Arcabit Antivirus: $23.64/year
  • Avira Antivirus Pro: $35.99/year
  • G-Data Internet Security: $39.95/year
  • Comodo Internet Security: $39.99/year
  • eScan Internet Security: $49.95/year

Beyond these, most services cost $50/year or more, and indeed, the services with the best test results are also ultimately among the most expensive. eScan is the only exception, making it one of the best-paid options based on its positive test results.

A few tools are simply not worth the price, however, as they are both expensive and poor performing. These include:

  • Quick Heal Total Security: $74/year
  • PC Pitstop: $50/year

Other available tools may still be worth the price when consumers take into consideration other features. Individual investigation of those features may be prudent before making a final decision based on price.

Minimum devices per purchase

Most AV companies charge more money per month for more device installations. However, each offer a certain number of device installations for the base price. In most cases, you can install the software on multiple devices for one the cost. If you need to cover multiple devices while saving money, a few AV tools are standout options:

  • AVG Internet Security: Unlimited number of device installations, $79.99/year
  • McAfee Internet Security: 10 devices, $89.99/year
  • Total Defense Premium: 5 devices, $79.99/year

Those looking to cover multiple devices may be better served with one of these options, all of which have good test results as well.

AV Tool Protection Score Average Performance Average False Positives Average Consumer Review Average (Average of 1-8 Site Reviews) # Consumer Site Reviews Averaged Minimum $ Cost (1 Year)
VirIT eXplorer PRO 40.83 N/A 100.0 N/A 0 28.33
Webroot Antivirus 72.75 N/A 72.8 82.5 4 39.99
Rising Security Cloud Client 77.86 N/A 100.0 N/A 0 N/A
Quick Heal Total Security 79.40 N/A 94.0 60.0 1 74.00
Avira Free Security Suite 90.00 N/A 97.0 67.0 4 0.00
AVG Free Antivirus 90.25 90.0 94.5 71.8 8 0.00
PC Pitstop 91.60 75.0 41.6 60.0 2 50.00
McAfee Internet Security 91.73 92.5 97.0 71.6 7 89.99
Avast Free Antivirus 94.20 90.8 97.7 82.5 8 0.00
eScan Internet Security Suite 94.70 100.0 100.0 67.3 3 49.95

 

 

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