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Getting the best antivirus software, whether you’re in Canada or outside of it, is a must. Viruses, malware, and ransomware attacks are at an all-time high. Without good antivirus software, your computer, finances, and identity are all at risk.
In our guide to the best antivirus software in Canada, we’ve reviewed and compared the 9 best virus protection apps around to provide the ideal solution for you.
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Now for our reviews of the market’s best antivirus solutions, which will provide everything you need to know about each one. We’ll cover the key features, pricing, and pros and cons of each.
100% malware detection rate
TotalAV is our pick for the best antivirus software solution for Canada as it offers every feature you’d expect and plenty of extras, too. The system regularly updates its virus threat protection library to ensure you’re always getting up-to-date security.
The software offers four scanning options – including quick, system, smart, and custom scans. This level of customization and flexibility is indicative of the deep level of user control provided with the product.
The number one reason TotalAV tops our list is that it has a proven threat detection score of 99% based on online security community testing.
The real-time threat protection features are activated by default, meaning you’re protected immediately after installing the software, and the feature uses minimal computer resources, so its impact on system performance is negligible.
TotalAV also offers a suite of supporting features, including ad blocking to stop pop-ups and save your bandwidth. The browser manager and cleaner also help simplify and manage your system.
You can also take advantage of the Safe Browsing VPN, which is available on the mid-tier and premium packages − and places TotalAV on the list of the best antiviruses with VPN software.
TotalAV’s final noteworthy aspect is its excellent compatibility with the most popular operating systems, including Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS – you can use the software on almost any device, and we rate it as the best antivirus for PC and the best antivirus for Windows 10.
One drawback is the maximum cap of six devices with the premium plan, which some users may find limiting, and the browser extension UI is also a bit cumbersome. Nevertheless, with its huge range of features, we rate TotalAV as the best antivirus software product on the market today.
Norton provides a comprehensive range of security options to keep you safe – and Norton’s perfect testing scores prove the protection, performance, and usability of the software live up to its claims.
The product’s smart firewall monitors traffic and blocks unauthorized uploads and downloads. You can access this feature with the product’s browser extension, meaning you can always see exactly what’s happening.
Additionally, the real-time threat protection feature helps deal with threats as they come up, keeping your personal information safe, safeguarding your financial information, and ensuring malware and viruses can’t reach your files.
The Secure VPN tool, meanwhile, is equipped with bank-grade encryption to provide secure and anonymous internet access to further secure your device.
Besides all this, Norton 360 Deluxe provides extra features like parental controls to help manage your child’s online safety and permitted time on the internet.
You can also restrict access to specific websites that may be inappropriate for children. The parental controls are unavailable for MacOS systems, and the online backup feature is only available for Windows users.
All in all, though, it’s an excellent package, and its extensive security features can protect your system at every level.
Trend Micro is one of the best malware scanners in the business, and it comes with advanced machine-learning technology. It performs in-depth file analysis and correlates threat information to identify emerging security risks.
This allows it to deliver comprehensive scans that find threats lesser services might miss. In addition, the scanner uses only a small amount of resources, allowing you to comfortably use your device while scanning in the background.
Folder Shield is a stand-out feature that offers local hard drive and cloud-synced folder protection, including for Google Drive and Dropbox, which is ideal for securing valuable files and financial information.
Trend Micro does an excellent job of providing real-time security against different attack types, such as ransomware, phishing, spyware, and viruses, so you’re protected around the clock. AV-Test scores back up these performance claims, showing consistently good results.
There are a few downsides, such as the fact that there’s no VPN available with the lower-tier plans, and it lacks a firewall, so you’ll need to rely on your operating system’s built-in firewall.
On the other hand, Trend Micro offers an optimized desktop app that allows you to effectively monitor and manage your online security. The app is included in the basic free version, so you can download the software without charge.
Ultimately, it’s a highly competitive package and comes with the added bonus of machine learning to ensure constant improvement.
ESET is one of the best antivirus software packages offering anti-theft features. It includes location tracking to help you track down your device. The laptop activity watch, meanwhile, allows you to see how your device is being used, which will also help.
The product provides multi-platform protection for Windows, Mac, Android, and Linux, and the highly-rated ESET mobile app delivers a great experience and all the safety features you get on the PC version.
ESET also provides protection from malware, including ransomware. This feature activates once you visit a financial website so you can enter your banking details with complete peace of mind.
Beyond this, the password manager is another great tool, and it uses 256-bit AES secure encryption to keep your details safe – the same security banks and the military use for their data.
However, the antivirus software lacks competitive parental controls, and the firewall pop-ups can be a little invasive – though you can turn them off. Despite that, it’s a first-class option for ensuring the physical security of your device.
Intego is our top pick for Mac operating systems – and the product has been specifically built for the requirements of the Apple ecosystem. It’s also available for Windows, but the Mac version provides the most features, and Intego can remove Mac-specific threats that other products on our list tend to overlook.
The antivirus solution offers real-time protection with two malware scanners – VirusBarrier and NetBarrier. With a detection rate of 99%, it’ll identify and remove malware, successfully preventing hackers from compromising your files.
Beyond this, the ContentBarrier feature provides parental controls, enabling you to set boundaries for kids of all ages and reduce the chance of them visiting inappropriate sites or communicating with dangerous people.
Cross-device compatibility is a bit of a drawback, though – the Windows app has slightly limited functionality and no mobile app is available, though you can scan an iPhone connected to your Mac. That said, we rate this as the ideal Mac antivirus software product, and it’s great for Apple fans.
Avast is our pick for the best antivirus software for beginners, as it has an optimized user interface which is great for non-tech savvy individuals, and Avast antivirus performs extremely well on testing scores, so you can be confident in its ability to protect your device.
In addition, Avast is likely the best free antivirus for Windows, with features like malware protection, app monitoring, and a firewall.
Each of these significantly reduces the chances of incoming threats infecting your computer, and it’s rare to get these features on a free plan – which is why we rate this as the best antivirus for Windows 10 for free.
Once you upgrade to a paid Avast subscription, you’ll access features like malicious website protection, which warns you when you’re about to visit a website that could potentially infect your computer.
However, there are some drawbacks, including a lack of parental protection features and the fact the business plan is somewhat pricey. Still, you can’t complain about arguably the best free antivirus software around.
Avira is our pick for the best cloud-based antivirus software – and you don’t even need to download the app to use the service. This significantly lowers the amount of computer resources it uses while running scans.
The anti-malware features perform well on testing, ensuring no threats are missed – even on the free plan, making it a better pick compared to competitors like Symantec or Malwarebytes.
Beyond this, the password manager has an optimized design, allowing you to quickly and easily manage your logins from the secure interface.
Avira does have a few weaknesses and lacks a firewall, so you’ll need to use the built-in Windows tool, and some users have reported the file-copying process is slow. In spite of these points, though, Avira remains a great option for cloud-based antivirus protection.
Kaspersky makes it on our list of the top antivirus software for Canada as it offers strong ransomware protection with a multi-layered approach.
In 2021, Kaspersky won 57 first-place awards for blocking attacks in 75 independent tests performed using various types of malware. The product delivers a pop-up notification whenever threats are detected, allowing you to immediately take action if needed.
The anti-phishing features do a great job of warning you about risky websites. When enabled, the feature will block access to questionable websites to safeguard you from common threats like keyloggers and viruses. This is one of Kaspersky’s best features and makes it stand out from the competition.
The Kaspersky Safe Kids feature allows you to create a safe online environment for your children. The tool allows you to block access to gambling and adult content and track their location with GPS – putting it alongside the top parental control apps.
Kaspersky also helps keep your browsing experience safe with the help of a password manager, which works also on iPhones and iPads.
For a balanced overview, there are some downsides to consider. The vulnerability scan provides relatively limited information, so can be hard to understand, and there’s some overlap between the extra scanning options, meaning there are fewer tools than you might imagine.
Given the current political climate, some users may also be wary of the antivirus’ Russian origin and allegations of connections to the Russian government.
McAfee is a widely trusted antivirus software solution and provides a competitive and constantly evolving service. Its advanced web protection features facilitate a safe browsing experience, allowing you to shop online without worrying that your banking details may be compromised.
The software’s award-winning protection does a great job of safeguarding your online devices from criminals and hackers. In addition, there’s a password manager that organizes and stores all your information behind robust encryption.
At the same time, the firewall keeps your home network secure from unwanted access. All things considered, it boasts everything you need from a solid antivirus.
McAfee antivirus is reportedly slow to scan on Windows, and you will need to upgrade for full-service personal data cleanup and access to identity restoration experts. Nevertheless, it’s a great option for security for PC with an extensive range of tools available.
To help you compare the top antivirus products at a glance, we’ve created a table to help you choose the best option, whether you’re looking for a free antivirus download or the best antivirus for Windows 11.
Antivirus services are a must-have to protect your device from the range of potential threats faced when connecting to the internet. However, it’s not the only solution you should consider. Here are a few others which are included with some of the antivirus tools on our list:
Antivirus software does a great job of blocking threats before they infect your computer. However, if you haven’t invested in one of these services, your computer might already be infected. Here’s a summary that shares the top signs to look out for:
Unusual dialogue boxes that pop up asking you to perform a specific action are often a sign of an infection, especially if they’re warning you about a virus or prompting you to call a phone number. Legitimate software pop-ups usually don’t ask you to call a specific phone number.
Have you noticed that the icons or names of your folders/files have changed? This could be a technical problem or a sign of an infection. For example, ransomware programs may lock your files until you meet the hacker’s demands.
Error message pop-ups will be accompanied by sounds. However, some infections block these message pop-ups from appearing to mask their intrusion. Nonetheless, the sounds will still be audible, which informs you that something is wrong.
Is your computer working more slowly than usual? In some cases, this might be due to malware taking up resources while operating in the background. The malware might be running advertisements or using resources for things like cryptomining.
Selecting the best antivirus software can be tricky, with so many great options on the market. The section below contains a summary of the criteria we used to narrow down our list of antivirus software products, which are worth considering, whether you’re looking at McAfee antivirus or AVG antivirus.
Our team of expert researchers has extensive experience in assessing cybersecurity products, and we’re able to identify the features that really make a difference and contrast underperformers with the best of the best.
We also make sure to integrate user feedback into our guides to account for the full customer experience from purchase to use over the longterm.
All the antivirus software solutions on our list offer the core features you’d expect, including malicious software detection, virus removal, file scanning, and 24/7 threat protection.
However, some of the top antivirus solutions also provide supplementary features that add more value. For example, here’s a summary of the extra features we considered when researching our list of the top antivirus software services:
We understand that everyone has a different price they’re willing to pay for antivirus software, so we’ve made sure to include options in different price brackets. However, as your budget increases, you can protect more devices and get extra features.
For example, the Ultimate package from Avast includes a VPN, a cleanup feature to speed up your PC, and AntiTrack to hide your online identity. You’ll need to decide if paying extra for these features is worthwhile.
That said, some of the best free antivirus software downloads are a good starting point to test products in action, and every antivirus software product on our list provides a free trial, so you can try them before you buy.
Once you get a feel for the software, you can decide if the paid subscription is the right choice for your needs and budget.
Of course, if you need a more specialized solution, such as the best antivirus for servers, it’s best to go straight to tools that will meet your requirements.
During our selection process, we paid close attention to performance by taking into account antivirus software tests and customer reviews. In fact, we only included providers that have successfully identified over 98% of online threats when put to the test by trustworthy third parties.
Beyond this, we considered the frequency of updates to their threat databases, and we evaluated the experiences of previous and current users to ensure we included only the most effective solutions.
Finally, we favored software with fast scanning times and ones that take up only a small amount of device resources to ensure you can use these tools while the scans run in the background.
We understand our readers need an antivirus software solution for different systems, so we’ve made sure to include options for every platform and not just PC antivirus software.
Whether you need antivirus software for Windows, Mac antivirus software, or tools for Android or iOS, our list has options for you.
Having seen our picks for the best antivirus software for Canada, you might be interested in checking out our other guides to a range of different use cases, including:
We rate TotalAV as the best option on our list and the best antivirus for Canada as it offers every feature you’d expect from a competitive antivirus service and a lot of extras, such as a pop-up ad blocker, VPN, and browser cleaner, adding amazing value.
It also has a threat detection score of 99%, so it can keep your devices safe from online security issues. What’s more, you can try TotalAV for free for an unlimited period, so there’s no rush when testing the quality of the service.
Viruses, malware, and ransomware are common online threats that infect your computer with malicious code and are often self-replicating themselves. They can be used to damage software, steal your bandwidth, harvest your personal information, and even render your computer or mobile useless. Meanwhile, hackers use ransomware to lock your files and demand payment to decrypt them.
TotalAV is the best antivirus software available today. It provides a comprehensive package with many useful features, including real-time protection, smart scanning, cross-device compatibility, efficient malware elimination, and ad blocking tools.
Yes, every device that connects to the internet ideally needs antivirus software to protect against threats like viruses, malware, and ransomware. Unprotected devices have a high chance of being infected, and antivirus software is the best defense.
Generally, you can’t run more than one antivirus program on a computer without issues. If you’re tempted to activate two antivirus programs, it could result in conflicts that prevent you from having a consistent and stable internet connection. As such, we recommend opting for one with all the features you need.
Free antivirus software can be sufficient to protect your computer in some cases, depending on the features included. Some of the best antivirus free products offer the core features and only charge for extras. However, many antivirus software free solutions only provide complete protection once you’ve signed up for a paid subscription.
Yes, phones need antivirus software because they’re prone to vulnerabilities like viruses, malware, and ransomware attacks, just like desktop devices. Therefore, it’s important to keep your phone protected with antivirus software like you would with a personal computer.
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