Bitdefender Antivirus Review

Bitdefender is hands down one of the best antivirus suites in today’s market. Not only is it jam-packed with features, it actually works exceptionally well against major ransomware threats. It includes just about everything your you need to keep malware and viruses out of your system.

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    Latest Bitdefender Discounts

    Right now, there are some real money-saving discounts available with Bitdefender, on both the home and business solutions.

    Keeping with the home options, you can get 50% off on whichever plan you choose. That means you’ll get Bitdefender Total Security for $39.98, Bitdefender Internet Security for $34.99, and Bitdefender Antivirus Plus for $29.99; but you’ll have to move fast as these are time sensitive and subject to change.

    Get Discount

    Pros

    • Multi-layered malware protection, easy configuration, and a hardened browser tackle security from multiple angles
    • It is extremely lightweight and thus features low system usage
    • There are multiple options to choose from including a 30-day trial along with 24/7 customer service
    • The Firewall offers individual app permission
    • A modern and clean interface makes it easy to deploy out of the box

    Cons

    • Accompanying VPN only offers the most basic functionalities
    • The One-Click Optimizer is missing some helpful automation features

    Bitdefender Total Security Overview

    Bitdefender is revered as one of the best antiviruses, and the protection it provides for over 500 million devices across 150 countries offers a lot of advanced features that guarantee real-time security around the clock. One of the best things that set Bitdefender apart from the league of other antivirus options is its system usage. It provides essential real-time protection without eating up your device’s RAM or storage.

    With Bitdefender, you gain access to innovative technology that detects and prevents even the latest threats. In addition, the antivirus suite features an intuitive and sleek user interface that you can configure as per your needs. Accordingly, it has received the “Outstanding Product” award from AV-Comparatives and is a masterpiece when it comes to protection, performance, and privacy. Bitdefender's leading products include:

    • Bitdefender Total Security: This is your way to ensure total protection wherever you go on the web or whatever you decide to download. You can protect up to five devices at a time and you’ll have access to the anti-theft feature too, which isn’t available with other plans. 
    • Bitdefender Antivirus Plus: Antivirus Plus is the lower-cost option but still offers great protection at an affordable price. The only real differences here, though, are that you can only use three devices with a subscription and there’s no anti-theft.
    • Bitdefender Internet Security: Bitdefender Internet Security is for those who want to browse the web without worrying about any threats they might encounter along the way. That said, you’d get better protection if you went for one of the other packages, since this doesn’t include anti-spam, anti-theft, and only covers three devices. 
    • Bitdefender Mobile Security: Get full protection wherever you are with your Android or iOS devices. You’ll have the backing of Bitdefender on the move and a built-in VPN to ensure anonymity as well as security.  

    Features

    Bitdefender antivirus is suited for everyone. Even the base-plan has some advanced features that aren’t provided by other software. It has been topping AV Test’s rating list for a long time now. The advanced algorithms help detect, prevent, and remove even the latest threats and malware.

    One of our favorite features is the option to configure Bitdefender security levels based on our activity. Moreover, Bitdefender and Kaspersky Internet Security ($59.95 at Kaspersky) were the only brands to score 6 out of 6 in the Protection Tests organized by AV-Tests.

    General

    With a money-back guarantee, advanced parental controls, and protection for email and USBs, there’s a lot on offer here outside standard antivirus scanning.

    Money-back GuaranteeYes, up to 30 days from the date of purchase
    Free VersionYes
    PlatformWindows, MacOS, Android, iOS
    Parental ControlsYes
    Email ProtectionYes
    ChatYes
    VPN ServiceYes
    Smartphone OptimizerNo
    USB Virus ScansYes
    Automated Virus ScansYes
    Game ModeYes
    Safe BrowserYes
    Passive ModeYes

    Advanced Threat Defence

    Bitdefender provides protection against all the major threats you might face online. Some of these include anti-trojan, anti-phishing, and anti-spam.

    Anti-SpywareYes
    Anti-WormYes
    Anti-TrojanYes
    Anti-RootkitYes
    Anti-PhishingYes
    Anti-SpamYes
    Adware PreventionYes

    Scanning

    With Bitdefender’s automatic scanning you can gladly say goodbye to the manual scans that need to be performed using existing programs. As a matter of fact, the core of the software is its powerful scanning mechanism.  After successful installation, it keeps scanning your device in real-time against the constantly updated list of security threats. You can get access to this powerful feature in the Free version as well.

    We like the freedom of choosing between a full scan and quick scan. Plus, there is a vulnerability checker to review and remove both OS and network connection vulnerabilities.

    AV-Comparatives recent Real-World Protection test awarded Bitdefender as ADVANCED+ because of the near-perfect protection rate of 99.8% and just 2 false positives. Norton Security ($19.99 at Norton), a neck-to-neck competitor, also scored 99.8% but with 32 false positives.

    We loved Bitdefender Total Security antivirus scans, but it can be a bit of disappointment if you have a lot of password-protected files/folders on your system.

    Privacy and Security

    Bitdefender’s earned its reputation, in part, for its commitment to user privacy and security. With an in-built VPN, anti-tracking, and SafePay software, your privacy is kept more than under wraps when you choose this antivirus. One of the most important features here that work to protect both user privacy and security is the Webcam Protection tool. Read on to learn more about these features as well as others that make Bitdefender a reliable choice. 

    Web Security

    Stay safe online with Bitdefender’s Web Security tool. It works in real time to analyze every website you visit, every file you might download, and shut down any threats before they get a hold of your devices. Safe removal of threats is important, and you can count on Bitdefender for that too.

    Network Threat Protection

    This recent addition to the Bitdefender security suite offers slightly more comprehensive protection than was available before. Now, your software will prevent immediate brute force attempts, will expose and protect the vulnerabilities in your system, protect sensitive information when it’s transferred, and thwart botnet attacks.

    Webcam Protection

    Removing permissions from your webcam, blocking it with paper - these aren’t exactly reliable solutions when you plan to use it. With the webcam protection tool, you don’t have to worry about someone watching you since spyware won’t stand a chance at making its way onto your devices.

    Anti-Theft

    Bitdefender’s anti-theft software works great for mobile devices but is just as effective on desktops and laptops too. Should you be met with the unfortunate situation of having your phone or laptop stolen, you can easily track it through the Bitdefender interface as well as shut it down remotely, preventing thieves from being able to use it and access your sensitive information and content.

    Bitdefender Anti-Theft Protection

    Safepay

    Handing over your payment details to companies on the web should be safe, and in most cases, it is. But, there’s always the chance that the wrong people could be watching. Safepay blocks your desktop and prevents anyone from making any screenshots, which works perfectly against keyloggers, and there’s also a virtual keyboard to make the job for hackers even harder. 

    Safe Files

    Safe Files - No changes to your files or random file installations without your permission will go unnoticed thanks to this tool. Plus, as we all know, websites or apps often want access to files they have no business accessing - Safe Files will prevent that from happening and will warn you with notifications should anything like this happen.

    Anti-Tracking

    Bitdefender’s anti-tracking extension works to keep all the annoying ads and intrusive location tools websites use. What’s more, using this tool every time you’re on the web will help speed up your activity as well help to maintain your privacy. 

    Bitdefender's Anti Tracker

    Bitdefender's VPN

    Considering it’s an antivirus provider, the VPN on offer here stands alongside many of the major software you’ll find out there. Putting aside that it’s made by an award-winning security firm that knows what works for web users, it has an impressive 1,300+ servers in over 25 countries around the world. Anyone considering tacking it onto their subscription can benefit from a seven-day free trial.

    Bitdefender's VPN

    Performance and Protection

    Beyond the features that make it a top antivirus contender, Bitdefender is very light on the system. It doesn’t overuse the system memory and you can barely notice it running continuously in the background. The impact on the CPU is low to minimal as well. Independent test results showed that while other antiviruses slow the system down by 50%, Bitdefender slows the device by a mere 8-10%.  

    They scored 6/6 (an ADVANCED+ rating) with a low-impact score of 6.7 on the Performance Test results from AV-Comparatives, while close competitor Avira Antivirus Pro ($35.99 at Avira), scored a relatively high 15.6.  Discover how It performs in protection categories by reading on:

    Malware Protection

    Bitdefender’s malware protection is top-notch. The company keeps updating its huge list of potential threats continuously. Whenever it finds a new threat, it instantly matches them with the database for further action. In addition, Bitdefender AI keeps monitoring the files for any inconsistent behavior. With this real-time update and security, you can rest assured of locating and immediately removing all kinds of malware from the system.

    You are safe

    Multi-Layer Ransomware Protection

    Bitdefender’s multi-layer ransomware protection is powered by its exclusive GravityZone software. It’s designed to stop any such threat in its tracks, as well as to detect and safely remove any instance of ransomware you already have on your devices. It’s powered using machine-learning technology that’s always adapting to new threat developments, though it already operates on one trillion data samples from more than 500 million endpoints around the world. What’s more, it runs in real-time, so it’s always working in the background as well as learning on how it can more proactively handle the threats that are out there.

    Ransomware Detection

    Phishing Detection

    Bitdefender’s protection against phishing attacks is also quite sturdy and impressive. A series of multiple tests by independent labs concluded that Bitdefender’s anti-phishing feature is among the best, and actually gives Kaspersky a run for their money.

    The advanced-AI feature blocks thousands of phishing websites, and the list of suspected URLs gets updated regularly to keep your device safe. The Phishing protection module of Bitdefender is completely customizable, meaning you can whitelist websites and even guide the tool on what to scan.

    Block the page

    Spyware Detection

    All the advanced spyware detection features are included in all of Bitdefender’s modules. Whether you run a quick scan or a full-fledged device scan, It will run thorough searches to check for possible spyware within your system and the network.

    It features an advanced-AI tool to monitor and compare spyware in real-time, keeping your device safe round the clock. The monitor tracks behavior and quarantines threats as and when required. If it finds something new, it adds it to the database for further tracking and removal.

    Spyware Detection

    Firewall Protection

    There aren’t many antiviruses that offer the same level of firewall protection as Bitdefender. First of all, it is one of the few brands that come with a two-way firewall that is extremely customizable. It protects your device from unauthorized network activity and port scans while you can also create your own rules to block or allow network access to individual apps.

    With Bitdefender, you can get more user control and customized protection irrespective of the network you’re connected to.

    Bitdefender's Firewall

    Bitdefender Mobile App

    You’ll need to protect your mobile devices when you’re on the move, as typically, it’s in these situations where we’re mostly caught off guard, when we’re using public Wi-Fi zones on trains or in bars, for example. Bitdefender’s mobile protection is available for both iOS and Android devices, and comes complete with remote theft protection, a built-in VPN, and has minimal effect on both device storage and battery life. For just $9.99 per year and by downloading the native app, you’ll have the protection of award-winning mobile security from Bitdefender.

    Some of the other tools you can expect from a subscription include malware threat detection and removal, download scanning, and something you might not have expected, an exclusive feature called WearOn. WearOn means you can extend the safety measures from your mobile device to smartwatches too.

    Pricing Plan

    PlanPriceNumber of DevicesTop Features
    Bitdefender Total Security$89.99 yearly5 devicesReal-time data protection, Advanced Threat Defense, One-click optimizer
    Bitdefender Internet Security$79.99 Yearly3 devicesParental Control, Multi-layer ransomware protection, multiple modes, Global protective network
    Bitdefender Antivirus Plus$59.99 Yearly3 devicesAnti-tracker, Wi-Fi security advisor, vulnerability assessment

    Lab Test Results

    We are more than happy with the tests we performed using Bitdefender. The latest release of Bitdefender Total Security 2020 boasts many improvements and a smoother user interface, not to mention the new anti-tracker browser extension and parental controls.

    Bitdefender scored 100 percent in AV-Test's extensive and prevalent malware test using approximately 2,500 samples. AV-Comparatives tested Bitdefender in its real-world security test, reporting that Bitdefender blocked 99.9% of attacks from 752 test cases. While it had a perfect score of 6 and an ADVANCED+ rating from AV-Test, Avast Free Antivirus was a little behind with a score of 5.5/6 despite this competitor providing exceptional support and nearly equivalent performance.

    To check the performance, we tested it on a Windows 10 PC (8 GB RAM, 64-bit) device. The installation took no time, and we were able to complete a full-device scan for the first time in under 20 minutes, which is really great when compared to some other antivirus software options. Also, we didn’t encounter any lag or system slowdown for any of the scans apart from the initial full scan.

    It was rated 8.3 by AV-Comparatives’ Performance Impact Test, wherein lower scores mean better performance. In the same test, McAfee Total Protection ($44.99 at McAfee)topped the charts with 7.5 while Trend Micro Maximum Security ($39.95 at Trend Micro) was rated at 13.7. Overall, Bitdefender delivers a power-packed security suite that uses less system memory.

    Ease of Use and Interface

    Honestly speaking, we haven’t seen a better user interface than Bitdefender’s lately. Although it is not much different than its 2019 interface, it displays a white checkmark on a green shield when there are no problems being detected. If you are a first-time user, you can make use of the tour they provide on your first installation to learn about the key areas of the user interface.

    Bitdefender - Ease of Use

    You get a straightforward dashboard with an easy navigation menu. With Quick Scans and the VPN just one click away, Total Security's beautifully designed dashboard gives you quick access to the features you'll need most often. A left sidebar organizes the other tools of Total Security into the areas of Protection, Privacy, and Utilities. You can tap any of the sub-menus to check the different functions they provide.

    If you don’t like the interface as it is, Bitdefender also allows you to customize the layout’s default features or add a new layout. Overall, it is a perfect balance of an easy and comfortable interface for beginners, as well as a highly configurable and controllable interface for experts.

    Customer Support

    They provide 24/7 access to Customer Care Representatives via phone calls, emails, and live chats. However, this is only available to customers using paid plans.  If you are seeking to solve potential problems on your own, you can find a lot of resources on their official website. They have a wide collection of articles written in simple language. Or, you can always head over to Bitdefender communities/forums for answers to most of your queries. You can even connect with them on social media platforms.

    Customer service has always been a priority for Bitdefender, and they ensure that each customer gets the most value out of their purchases. This is why you can rest assured to receive the first response within 24 hours of your email. However, for quicker responses, feel free to try their live chat feature.

    There’s just one drawback – most technical issues are routed to 2nd-level support who respond via emails which may result in slightly delayed responses. Yet, if you have a clean installation, you likely won’t need to reach out for technical help.

    How to Setup and Uninstall Bitdefender

    It is rather straightforward to download and install Bitdefender. Just follow the steps listed below:

    1.       Choose the Bitdefender Total Security 2020 plan
    2.       Visit Bitdefender Central and sign-in or create an account
    3.       Go to My Devices, then click on Install Protection

    Install Bitdefender

    4.       You’ll see a window Protect Your Devices > click Protect this Device to install Bitdefender on the device (select the device owner from the list)
    5.       Once the download is completed, run the installer
    6.       When the setup wizard appears, select the preferred language and click on Install to confirm
    7.       Once the installation is completed, click on the Get Started window to verify if your subscription is activated
    8.       Click Finish to access the user interface.

    Uninstalling Bitdefender is easy. Here’s how you can do it:

    1. Open the Control Panel
    2. Go to Programs > select Bitdefender > click Uninstall
    3. Restart your device if not done automatically

    uninstall

    Our Verdict

    Bitdefender has been the first choice for thousands of internet users, both businesses and individuals, for the last 20 years. Considering the ever-changing, ever-developing threats of malware out there, you need an antivirus you can trust to be able to adapt,   detect, and protect users from them.

    Both Windows and Mac are protected here, and should you have any issues along the way, whatever system you’re using, you can rely on 24/7 customer service and an easy-to-use interface to ensure you get the most out of your subscription.

    FAQ

    1. Is Bitdefender a good antivirus?

    Bitdefender is one of the most popular choices in antivirus protection for good reason. Not only does it offer a straightforward UI and well-priced plans, but it also protects against virtually all threats out there.

    2. Does Bitdefender have a free version?

    There is a free version, yes, and it comes with a lot of the same protections as premium options, like anti-phishing. But if you want the reassurance of comprehensive, advanced security, you’ll be better off choosing a paid subscription.

    3. Which Bitdefender package should I choose?

    This depends entirely on your requirements. For example, there’s one that focuses on internet security and another that offers full coverage. There are solutions meant for businesses and ones for home users too. It depends on what you think you’ll need. We recommend Total Protection for complete peace of mind.

    4. Does Bitdefender detect and remove malware?


    Yes, it does. With the various forms of malware out there, you need an antivirus that protects against malware, so Bitdefender is a good choice.