Alternative Anti-virus Programs to McAfee

by Shea Laverty

If you're a McAfee AntiVirus user looking to make a switch to a new utility, the multitude of options can seem daunting. There are several well-reviewed and well-known utilities that can take over the functions of McAfee with minimal difficulty. The right utility for you is largely dependent on your own needs and personal preference.

Avast Antivirus

Avast Antivirus is an anti-virus suite developed by Avast Software and serves as the company's flagship product. A CNET Editor's Choice pick, Avast offers a number of additional utility features. The "Browser Cleanup" tool is designed to remove unwanted toolbars and plugins from your Web browser, while an included Software Updater allows you to keep all of your computer's software up-to-date. Avast's user interface is also fairly simple, and optimized for use with touchscreen devices -- an ideal feature for touchscreen-enabled Windows 8 computers. Avast is also available in a number of different editions, including a free edition for personal use, a premium paid service and a version for enterprise services.

AVG Antivirus

AVG Antivirus is an anti-virus suite developed by AVG Technologies USA. Earning a five-star rating from CNET's editors, AVG Antivirus is touted in its CNET review as being "among the fastest AV scans of any suite, free or paid." AVG also features a simple UI, designed with Windows 8 touchscreen users in mind. AVG also features a rootkit detector, ransomware blocker, a LinkScanner tool that can detect dynamic viral code online and a PC Analyzer to optimize general computer performance. Like Avast, AVG offers its anti-virus services in a free edition for personal use, as well as a premium paid service and a version for enterprise services.

Kaspersky Anti-Virus

Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2013 is an anti-virus software suite developed by Kaspersky Lab. Earning a four-and-one-half star rating from CNET, Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2013 offers several features to users including a System Watcher, which detects dangerous software behavior and offers a rollback feature to undo any potential harm. Kaspersky also features an Automatic Exploit Prevention system designed to intercept phishing attempts and other exploit threats. Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2013 is only available as a 30-day free trial, at which point it must be upgraded to the paid version.

Bitdefender Total Security

Bitdefender Total Security is an anti-virus software suite developed by Bitdefender. Earning a perfect five star rating from CNET, Bitdefender offers a number of security features and options. Included is the Safepay browser, a sandbox Web browser that isolates the browser from the rest of your computer while surfing. Bitdefender also includes phishing protection, a spam guard system performance optimizer, file and chat encryption and online data backup via cloud storage. Bitdefender also features AutoPilot, an automated defense system that silences notifications and instead automatically deals with directed threats without human interaction. Bitdefender is available in several paid tiers, with Total Security as the highest-cost paid tier with the most features.

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