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Best antivirus for Windows 10

CBR has compiled a list of five of the most formidable antivirus solutions that are big on protection and small on price.

By Tom Ball

There are many options when you need some formidable antivirus, but CBR has thinned the herd down to just five. These top contenders have different combinations of strengths; on the one hand this list contains relatively new names that are shaking up the antivirus space with ideas to challenge the giants, while the list also includes the companies with the most reassuring legacies that span decades. Price is also a key factor of course, and these options also range from having no cost, to products with some higher monthly rates. These prices are backed by a plethora of justifying reasons.



Norton Antivirus was developed in 1991 by Symantec, with Norton now a household name among providers of antivirus. Norton not only provides private packages, they have also developed a solution for small business that allows centralised management from the cloud.

The most cost effective option for Norton is the Deluxe package that costs $49.99, this package allows you to protect five devices of any kind. This package is a competitive price when the multiple uses are factored in.


With such a long history of providing antivirus products, the reliability of Norton is very strong, and can stand shoulder to shoulder with its rivals. There have been alternate views however, with Norton at time targeting harmless software and flagging it as a threat.

All Norton suites include the basic Virus, Malware, Spyware and Online threat defender features; so that even with the basic package the user can rest assured that all grounds are covered. At a further $10 a year there is an upgraded package that will additionally include smartphone protection and access to an online web portal.

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Customer support is also highly rated, with help provided at every stage of use. Live chat is included as a support feature, but there is also a thorough and dynamic set of help options available that can be accessed by a navigation bar.


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Kaspersky are a giant within the space, now providing over 300 million users with protection. Not only aiding individuals, Kaspersky also protects 250,000 businesses globally. Like Norton, Kaspersky have 20 years of experience to boast, guaranteeing top level reliability.

A stand out bonus when using Kaspersky antivirus is its ability to handle malware efficiently, as the process does not drain crucial processing power as some others do during background activity.

The basic version of Kaspersky’s antivirus software is called ‘Essential Protection’ and it costs $34.99, covering three PCs and lasts for a year. For an additional $5 there is an upgrade available called ‘Internet Security’, this upgrade fine tunes and builds on the original product, but will also apply protection to your webcam, add anti-spyware measures and privacy features.

Even the basic version arms the user with a high level of protection for the price, as advanced features such as anti-phishing tools are included, as well as ‘Instant Safety Checks’. The upgrades also offer a wide array of assets for small price, with the next upgrade from the basic version including an array of added features, such as a ‘Two-way Firewall’ and Financial Transaction Data Protection.

Customer service also covers all grounds, including live chat and email, and a 24/7 service to get online sales support. The process of calling to speak to someone for help has been well rated, and considered suitable in an emergency.



Total AV has been a bolt from the blue, gaining traction and massive popularity in 2016. TotalAV is now in prime position to suit the needs of many requiring antivirus solutions in 2017. The product will not only provide support for Windows, it can also support smartphones and tablets.

TotalAV stands out on this list as it is very highly regarded, and it is also free to download the Total AV virus scanner. The basic package costs $1.20 per month, and claims to provide free tools amounting to hundreds. For a license that allows you to protect up to three devices, the price is still under $2 per month; this has been widely reviewed as remarkable value for money.


Among the long list of features provided in this affordable package are an advanced antivirus system that gives the user complete control of its processes, and also real-time scanning so that no stone is left unturned in this period of heightened cyber threat.

Despite not having the legacy of Norton or Kaspersky, TotalAV has received complimentary reviews that compare its ease of use and reliability to that of some of the giants in the space. Total AV has also been credited with working consistently, ensuring that there is no moment of weakness that could be exploited and cause a security breach.

Another factor that brings TotalAV in line with some of the more expensive antivirus solutions provided by the giants is the customer service. TotalAV comes with complete service that is free of hassle. Live chat is said to be easy and uncomplicated, taking only a very short period of time to get going.  30 days money back guarantee is also available with this software.


Next Up: Customer service & a true behemoth of computer security


PC Protect

PC Protect is also an affordable antivirus solution that has entered the pack of antivirus front runners. The solution was developed specifically for the complex, modern market. The product also is also designed to tackle the top intelligent and aggressive threats currently affecting devices.

On a similar level as TotalAV, PC Protect has an attractive, low price tag. The packages range between $4.99 per month, down to $1.20 per month. The slightly more expensive option provides 24 month protection and will protect up to three devices instead of just one.


Some of the features of this product include ‘Advanced antivirus’ that is equipped with real-time protection and smart scanning, a file manager, firewall, and a system booster. These extra features have been considered very effective and useful, and not cluttering.

The customer service is also considered consistent, with phone support, email and live chat all available. Wait times are supposedly impressively low for the live chat support feature, without requiring and extensive forms.

READ MORE: Best Mac Antivirus: Top 5

The product has received solid reviews on reliability, with a strong design constituting the ease of use but also the confidence in the overall performance of the software. The advanced settings are the only questionable area that flags up, with the controls they provide not being over particular use.


Now owned by Intel, McAfee is a true behemoth of the antivirus world, and one of the few most well-known and well established names. McAfee have remained firmly planted in the tried and tested roots, while also having developed to tackle the threats of the new cyber landscape.

Intel has introduced products for small businesses to the McAfee line, drawing upon the expansive market that Intel have built up over time. The companies have merged well, as even following a refurbishment of aesthetics by Intel; the new products are reviewed as having a sturdy McAfee feel.

antivirusThe top end antivirus offered by McAfee is called ‘Total protection’, and comes in at $6.65 per month. McAfee have also said that on license can be used to cover all of your devices. This element makes McAfee stand out, as it is rare that there is not a usage cap tied to the price of the product.

McAfee is not unfamiliar with winning awards for the antivirus it provides, and so the reliability of this service is very high end. This software is particularly good at judging what software is not harmful, this negates the arduous problem of legitimate, good software being quarantined unnecessarily, as has been said to happen with Norton.

Customer service is also unsurprisingly good, with a dedicated support centre on hand to aid you in dealing with problems. Reviews of wait times as low as two minutes at peak times have arisen, putting McAfee right in the midst of the front runners.



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