Will Watts Senior Administrator, Security Analyst Staff member Joined Mar 4, 2012 Posts 6,513 Location %tmp% Apr 7, 2012 #1 What's the best antivirus program out there? A question all too commonly seen on forums, and yet also one that is virtually impossible to answer. There is unfortunately no “best” antivirus program out there, and no “best” way of protecting your computer. Malware is a constantly changing field, with new threats rapidly appearing soon after the last. As such, we can never expect 100% perfect protection from our security programs, and you should never rely solely on your antivirus program to protect you. Opinions on what the current “best” AV programs are change from day to day. As different versions of an AV program come out the program may be considered more bloated/resource intensive, or have unnecessary features that might be unneeded for some users. When deciding on which antivirus program to use, a good start is to check www.av-comparatives.org/. This site gives you up to date, independent statistics of the leading free and paid for AV programs. Different AV programs have different strengths and weaknesses; however the main area to look for is the detection rate. If you're considering using an AV product that scores well in performance, but has a low detection rate, then you will want to consider a different product. Different AV programs are also suited for different needs. If you’re looking for an all-in-one security program, that will require little maintenance or user input, then you might want to consider a paid for full security suite like ESET Smart Security. If on the other hand, you’re on a machine with very limited CPU and ram resources, you might want a lighter AV program that will perform better on your system. Providing you stick to one of the major vendors, AV detection rates will not vary too dramatically (although it’s always a good idea to check on AV Comparatives), but different AV products are suited for different environments. Think about your needs and requirements, and look around the various AV products. All the main paid-for suites have trial versions available that will help you judge what effect the suite has on system performance, as well as whether you personally like the graphical interface and the features offered. Like many of us here at Sysnative, I personally use free AV software and security programs. Whilst several free AV programs are great, these are often basic programs that will not offer you the complete protection needed for your computer – use these in conjunction with other security software, but always remember to only ever have one antivirus program installed at any one time.