Top 10 Best Antivirus Software for 2016 - Total Safety For Windows

   Here we review the best antivirus programs you can buy or download in the UK right now. Securing your PC is, of course, about a lot more than antivirus. At the very least you need to run up to date antivirus, antispyware and a firewall. You'll find that almost all of the best antivirus software we test these days forms part of an internet security suite: so all of the above and more is included.
The trouble is, some antivirus is better than others. They all offer a blacklist of known threats, and a whitelist of software that is known to be legitimate. But these days new threats emerge every day, and knowing what is friend and what is foe in real-time can be critical. And that's where we come in. AV-Test challenges Windows security software to withstand threats both old and new, known and unknown.
We then combine that with our own experienced and expert tests of interface and system overhead. We test antivirus programs for how much (if at all) they slow down your PC or laptop, as well as how easy to use and how intrusive they are. Thus you can see from our regularly updated list of the best antivirus for PC or laptop, which is the best for you. Best antivirus for protection, best antivirus for performance, and best antivirus for value. Click through to read the individual antivirus reviews.

1. Kaspersky Total Security 2016

  • Reviewed on: 16 December 14
  • RRP: £42 inc VAT (3 PCs, 1 year)

A three-device, full protection IS suite for under £50 is good value and when that includes cover on all the major platforms, it should be flexible enough for most. Kaspersky Total Security 2015’s technical strength can’t be faulted, with only Avira Anti Virus Pro matching it in the AV-Test group.

2. Avira Free Antivirus 2015

  • Reviewed on: 6 October 15
  • RRP: Free

Overall, this is one of the best free AV applications you’re going to find. With perfect scores from AV-Test, a good range of facilities for a zero-cost suite and a well-designed interface which is easy to use and direct, Avira Free Antivirus 2015 is a great choice to protect your PCs.

3. Avast Free Antivirus 2015

  • Reviewed on: 5 October 15
  • RRP: Free

Avast Free Antivirus 2015 is one of the best free security products you can install. It offers a surprising range of free goodies, including application and browser app analysis and, separately, an excellent Android suite, covering AV and anti-theft. A better than average AV-Test rating completes a very impressive picture.

4. BitDefender Antivirus Free Edition 2016

  • Reviewed on: 13 October 15
  • RRP: Free

BitDefender Free Edition will suit a certain kind of user, one who just wants to install the software and let it do its job, without recourse to setup changes or manually scans. Since it has such a high protection score, it’s safe to do this, but if you prefer to have more hands-on control, you may find this approach frustrating.

5. AVG Free Antivirus 2016

  • Reviewed on: 5 October 15
  • RRP: Free

AVG Free continues to be one of the best free antivirus programs you can download. It offers a good selection of key protections, though you do have to be careful to install the right product.

6. McAfee LiveSafe 2015

  • Reviewed on: 31 October 14
  • RRP: £80 inc VAT 

If you run a couple of home Windows PCs, a Mac, a tablet and a smartphone, or a similar combination, McAfee LiveSafe 2015 is an economical way of protecting them all and providing anti-theft facilities on the mobile devices. While the feature set of the IS component of the package may lack back-up and PC tune-up, the power of its AV protection can't be denied.

7. G-Data Internet Security 2015

  • Reviewed on: 20 February 15
  • RRP: £45 inc VAT (3 PC licence)

G-Data Internet Security 2015 is relatively inexpensive for a full-featured security suite. It's not the most successful at beating out web threats, but it is sufficiently good to be worth installing. A decent purchase, if not the best.

7. Panda Global Protection 2015

  • Reviewed on: 3 November 14
  • RRP: £60 inc VAT

Panda Global Protection 2015 is a good option, if you need to protect a range of different devices from Windows PCs to Macs and Android machines. Not quite as generous as McAfee's ‘as-many-as-you-like' offering and a point off the perfect score in AV-Test's testing, the Panda product costs £20 less, too and is particularly easy to use.

8. Webroot Internet Security Plus 2015

  • Reviewed on: 25 February 15
  • RRP: £50 inc VAT

It’s not possible to compare Webroot’s offering with the others in terms of AV efficacy, as we have no test results, but the company’s claim to scan fast and leave a light impression looks fair.

9. ESET NOD32 Antivirus 8

  • Reviewed on: 28 May 15
  • RRP: £45 inc VAT 

ESET NOD32 Antivirus is a sound antivirus product with some useful extras, though it’s a bit surprising anti-spam isn't included in the product. The software is easy to use and doesn't disrupt the normal function of a PC it’s running on. Technically, it's a strong contender, without being in the front rank.

10. Qihoo 360 Total Security 2016

  • Reviewed on: 26 November 15
  • RRP: Free

If you want the extra features that Total Security 2016 offers over and above a plain free antivirus product, then Qihoo isn't a bad choice. And if you do install it, you should head straight into the settings and enable the Bitdefender scanner.
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