The most effective antivirus software guards against all forms of cyber threats, including ransomware, malware, phishing, spyware, and data snooping. It should also be compatible with your operating system, work on Windows, Mac and Android devices (and the ideal is Linux too), and have a minimal impact on performance. It should also provide extra security features like a secure browser and file shredder.
It is also important to ensure that the software regularly updates its malware database as new threats are continually being developed to circumvent traditional detection methods. A majority of the top antivirus programs make use of a variety of different detection methods to improve their reliability using heuristics, behavior monitoring, sandboxing, and artificial intelligence.
Free antivirus programs tend to provide basic protection that’s enough for most users, however if you’re looking for advanced features such as SMS and blocking calls, cloud storage management and scanning of devices, go with paid-for options. These programs will have a subscription pricing model and will be backed by solid lab test results and user reviews.
If you’re looking for a top-rated mobile antivirus program, you should try AVG Antivirus. It scored 100% in AVComparatives tests in June 2023, and includes the smart scanner and Wi-Fi network alerts. It also offers junk file cleanup as well as Wi-Fi network alerts. It also blocks unwanted calls and texts, lets you find your phone missing with a GPS tracker and provides an anti-theft feature that blocks your phone after three failed password attempts. The paid version offers additional security features like an inbuilt VPN and automatic app updates.