When it comes to choosing a reliable antivirus, it can be nearly impossible to sift through the dozens of alternatives, each of which is touted to be the best in the market.
In this regard, Reddit is one of the best sources for trustworthy and accurate information on everything, especially antiviruses. As the website is essentially a large community forum, the opinions and reviews that are given there tend to be authentic and based on the users’ own experiences.
From these reviews, we have gathered recommendations about Reddit’s best antivirus for you, all in one place.
Top 5 best antivirus software by Reddit
- TotalAV Antivirus Pro – Best antivirus according to Reddit in 2023
- Bitdefender – Powerful and effective Reddit antivirus application
- Norton 360 – Most feature-rich antivirus software according to Reddit
- Avira – Reddit antivirus app that comes with a great free version
- Surfshark Antivirus – Reddit antivirus that also comes with a powerful VPN
You can read about the factors we took into consideration while making this list in more detail in the methodology section.
These factors are ideal for finding the most liked software on Reddit while also ensuring that the recommendations hold up in our testing. Some of them include:
- Popularity on Reddit
The best antiviruses Reddit users recommend in 2023
Here, we will discuss in more detail why we think each of these antiviruses are recommended by Reddit. We’ll also explain what makes them such a great option generally speaking as well.
1. TotalAV Antivirus Pro – The most popular antivirus recommended by Reddit
- Real-time protection
- Compatible with Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android
- Extremely feature rich
- Basic plan only protects 3 devices at once
- Safe Search can be a bit finicky
TotalAV is often the most recommended antivirus regardless of where you look, and that’s for a good reason. On Reddit, we found this to be the most recommended antivirus, indicating its unanimous popularity.
One Reddit user’s experience with TotalAV’s free version.
One of the best parts of TotalAV Antivirus Pro is its top-class real-time protection that makes sure your device is not only continually monitored, but also protected. It does this by detecting and blocking any malicious software that it finds on your computer before the virus has a chance to infect your files and folders.
Real-time protection is a key feature for staying safe from malware that could compromise your device and steal your data for malicious purposes.
For those who are retroactively getting an antivirus and want to eliminate the malware already present on their device, TotalAV also provides an excellent scanning feature. Though this is a basic requirement on all antiviruses, TotalAV takes it a step further in the depth that it searches to make sure no virus is left undetected and unblocked.
TotalAV is available for $29/year, but it also has a free version that you can try before making a commitment.
|Money-back guarantee||30 days|
|Max devices||6 on TotalAV Antivirus Pro|
|Starting price||from $29/year|
2. Bitdefender – Effective antivirus with flexible options for subscription
- Top-grade protection from harmful software
- Free version offers a lot of features that alternatives don’t have
- Pricing is competitive
- Can slow down the computer when a full scan is running.
Bitdefender is as flexible as it is effective, with scaling options that allow you to use it for your personal computer or for an entire small business operation. People on Reddit like this antivirus because it is really light on resource-usage, so you won’t even know it’s there while it protects you from malware in the background.
Reddit user u/ijie24’s response on whether or not Bitdefender is a good antivirus.
AV-Comparatives has consistently given the antivirus three stars and an Advanced+ rating (which is the highest rating given by the independent AV testing lab).
The best part of Bitdefender is that it is extremely user-friendly. Effectiveness aside, which is second to none, the dashboard it offers is incredibly easy to use and allows you to manage the security on multiple devices across your home/business.
This is especially useful for non-tech-savvy individuals that want a piece of software which just works and doesn’t need too much tinkering. If you are an advanced user that’s willing to configure the settings, however, you can make the antivirus perform even better than it does on its default settings.
Bitdefender is available for $19.99/year and it also offers a free version.
|Money-back guarantee||30 days|
|Max devices||3 on Bitdefender Antivirus Plus, 5 on Bitdefender Antivirus Total Security, 10 on Bitdefender Premium Security|
|Starting price||from $19.99/year|
3. Norton 360 – One of the best feature-rich antiviruses out there
- Effective real-time malware protection
- Includes many features that most antiviruses don’t offer
- Doesn’t slow down your computer while running
- Doesn’t have a free version, only offers a 7-day free trial
Norton has been a staple in the antivirus industry for decades, and it’s no surprise that Redditors love it as well. The feature Reddit users like the most about this is that it can be relied on to block 100% of threats on your device every time, thanks to its excellent real-time protection and constant updates.
Many users on Reddit think Norton’s notifications are frustrating but you can configure them to make them less intrusive.
Norton 360 is also really quite fast. Its fast scan feature doesn’t take much time and it makes sure to be thorough so no threats are passed through its firewall.
For individuals that want a more in-depth cleaning of their system, Norton has a full-scan feature that searches all directories and weeds out any bad files that might cause harm to your computer. Beyond that, the antivirus is quite feature-rich, just like Bitdefender. It includes a password manager, dark web monitor, VPN, and parental control, among other things.
The most basic plan of the antivirus is available for $19.99/year and comes with a 60-day money-back guarantee.
|Money-back guarantee||60 days|
|Max devices||1 on Norton Antivirus Plus, 3 on Norton 360 Standard, 5 on Norton 360 Deluxe, 10 on Norton 360 LifeLock Select|
|Starting price||from $19.99/year|
4. Avira – Excellent antivirus with a great free version to try out
- Free version is feature-rich and does most of what you need
- Premium offers many useful features on top of the free version
- Includes a VPN and other important apps within the subscription
- macOS, Android, and Linux versions do not have all the features that the Windows version does
Avira is another antivirus loved by Redditors for its features and speed. Though in recent times it has been purchased by Norton, it continues to operate independently and maintains the quality it has always had, which has earned it recommendations on Reddit.
Avira is often recommended in Reddit circles as an alternative to Bitdefender.
In terms of features, the speed of Avira is unmatched by many other antivirus apps. When it comes to the full scan feature, it completed it in the lowest amount of time in our testing, while also maintaining a high success rate of blocking threats that were detected.
The speed does come at a cost though, in this case, that is the strain that it puts on your system while a full scan is being completed.
Avira has multiple subscription plans, with the cheapest one starting at $5.99 per month.
|Money-back guarantee||30 days|
|Max devices||1, 3, and 5 devices on Avira Internet Security, 5 and 25 devices on Avira Prime|
|Starting price||from $5.99 per month|
5. Surfshark Antivirus – Highly-recommended Reddit antivirus and VPN 2-in-1
- Real-time protection
- Includes an unlimited VPN in the subscription
- Reduces bloatware on your computer
- Quite expensive when compared to competitors
- Antivirus is not the primary feature, other programs may be better at this task
Surfshark is primarily a VPN, but also offers an antivirus included with it. Redditors like this antivirus mainly because it’s a 2-in-1 software, making it easy for you to get the features you’re looking for without bloating your computer with too many programs.
Surfshark is primarily a VPN, but it’s more affordable than other antivirus software.
The antivirus is excellent at offering protection against malware, online threats, and viruses. It’ll keep you safe from intrusive ads and phishing scams, and if you have the VPN, you can connect to one of its RAM-based servers to encrypt your online traffic.
You can get Surfshark for $2.39 per month, which makes it a great budget-friendly option.
|Money-back guarantee||30 days|
|Max devices||5 devices|
|Starting price||Starts at $2.39 per month|
Methodology: How we picked Reddit antiviruses
As mentioned above, there were many factors that helped us create our list of best antiviruses by Reddit. Here are some of them:
- Popularity on Reddit – The popularity of an antivirus was a crucial criterion in our methodology as it defined how many people were actually recommending a certain antivirus on Reddit. We combed through multiple reviews on the site to see what actual users of the antivirus think of it.
- User-friendliness – We made sure that the antivirus that was being recommended was not just effective, but also easy to use in everyday operations. We took into consideration things such as the user interface of the app, whether or not it shows ads, and how different the mobile apps are from the desktop ones.
- Features – The features that an antivirus includes define how useful it is and what kind of tasks it will be able to perform. The most important feature that we looked at was real-time protection, which was followed by other nice-to-haves like a VPN, dark web monitoring, parental control, etc.
- Effectiveness – We tested the antivirus ourselves and also checked test scores on sites like AV-test and AV-comparatives, to confirm their effectiveness.
- Price – Finally, we looked at the prices of the antivirus applications to make sure they provide good value for money.
Why Reddit users’ opinions are important
Since Reddit is a community-based platform where people form sub-groups about their interests, it is composed of users that offer their unbiased and authentic opinions on the software they are using. While Reddit is not considered a basis for scientific research, the opinions of Reddit users are very important for deciding whether a set of software is as useful as the provider claims it to be.
In the case of antivirus, there were many cases where supposedly effective antiviruses were not being recommended by Reddit users because in reality, the software did not work as claimed.
Furthermore, by looking at Reddit users’ opinions, one can also get a real-world view of insights that are not mentioned in generalized reviews of things. For example, a user could mention that there is a hidden setting-option in the antivirus that if switched on could make the speed or effectiveness increase/decrease significantly.
Often, these kinds of reviews can only be obtained from users that have long-term experience with antivirus software.
Best Reddit antiviruses by category
Depending on your needs, you can look at the categories below and decide on which one suits you best. Based on each category, we have picked the best performing antivirus and explained why it is the best in that category.
Best antivirus for cheap
Norton 360 is the best antivirus that offers the most bang for the buck. Starting at $19.99, the antivirus includes many features including a VPN, password manager, parental control, smart firewall, dark web monitoring, and even a secure cloud backup for your data.
Norton is cheaper than other top antiviruses and often has promotions and deals going on.
When it comes to security, it is often best not to compromise for a cheaper one that has fewer features or isn’t as effective. In that respect, Norton makes sure you don’t have to make any compromises, as it ranks at the very top in terms of effectiveness while also including a lot of features that other antiviruses do not include, even at higher price levels.
Norton 360 also includes certain unique features, including ID restoration support from its consumer service. This can be lifesaving in the case of identity theft which is a considerable risk in the digital age from sources like phishing scams and data mining.
Moreover, for people that monitor social media a lot, Norton offers real-time online protection to make sure you do not mistakenly go to any skeptical areas.
Recommended antivirus for Android
Bitdefender is one of the most popular choices on Reddit for antivirus protection on Android, being used by many Redditors as their daily antivirus app for years. Bitdefender is highly regarded due to its impressive features and reliable performance.
A Reddit user on Bitdefender’s Web Protection feature.
One of its key strengths lies in its comprehensive protection, which includes real-time scanning, anti-malware defense, web protection against phishing and malicious sites, and a robust firewall.
Despite its powerful capabilities, Bitdefender maintains a low system impact, ensuring that it runs smoothly in the background without significantly slowing down the device or draining its battery.
Additionally, Bitdefender offers essential anti-theft features, allowing users to remotely locate, lock, and wipe their devices if they are lost or stolen. Its app lock feature adds an extra layer of privacy and security by enabling users to lock specific apps with a PIN or fingerprint.
The web protection feature blocks malicious websites and phishing attempts, while the secure VPN encrypts online connections. Regular updates also keep the antivirus software up to date with the latest threats, and its user-friendly interface makes it easy to navigate and customize security settings, which is an important part of any mobile software.
Best antivirus with malware scanner
According to Reddit, TotalAV is the best antivirus with malware scanner. It stands out as one of the top antivirus solutions, thanks to its exceptional malware scanner. The scanner's effectiveness can be attributed to several key factors.
Many people on Reddit believe TotalAV has the best malware scanner.
Firstly, TotalAV utilizes advanced detection technology, employing sophisticated algorithms and heuristics to identify and analyze various types of malware. With real-time protection, it actively monitors files, applications, and system activities, swiftly neutralizing threats before they can cause harm.
The malware scanner is backed by an extensive database of regularly updated malware signatures, enabling it to quickly compare files and detect known threats effectively.
Furthermore, TotalAV conducts deep system scans, thoroughly examining system files, registry entries, and memory for hidden malware. It extends its protection to web browsing by offering browser protection features that block access to malicious websites and prevent phishing attempts.
Antivirus that Reddit users do not recommend
On Reddit, Kaspersky is an antivirus that has come under fire in recent years since it is reported to have Russian ties. The creator of the antivirus has a history of working for the Russian government, which has caused a boycott of the antivirus in many areas following the Russia-Ukraine war.
Reddit user u/Ubetcha8 explaining why they stopped using Kaspersky.
Keeping that in mind, while many users recommend against it for privacy concerns, there are also some Redditors that say there is no reason to be concerned, as the antivirus itself still works fine.
However, given the nature of the Russian government and the state of the country at this time, it would be best to follow the majority of Reddit users’ advice and not go for Kaspersky over the other antivirus recommended here.
What free antiviruses do Reddit users recommend?
Most Reddit users recommend using Windows Defender if you don’t want to buy a premium software, but it’s worth noting that it doesn’t have as many features as other top applications.
Most Reddit users suggest trying out Windows Defender since it comes pre-installed on Windows PCs.
Most free antiviruses only provide a scanner, which may not always work. There’s no real-time protection, a password manager, VPN, or even anti-phishing tools. This can put your data in jeopardy since you’re not getting full protection.
For this reason, we recommend sticking to a premium software such as TotalAV Antivirus Pro. It comes with a multitude of powerful features, all of which are designed to protect your data and keep it safe from hackers.
Frequently asked questions
TotalAV is the most recommended and also the most used antivirus by Reddit users. The software offers the most effective protection against all kinds of malware and viruses and has stood the test of time as one of the best antivirus solutions out there.
In terms of performance, the opinions are mixed, as some people considered Bitdefender to perform better than Kaspersky and vice versa. The user-interface also comes into consideration as that can make or break the entire experience of a user. Overall, Bitdefender seems to be preferred by most Redditors.
Recommendations on Reddit are driven entirely by community members that have nothing to gain from advertising or promoting certain software. Accordingly, it can be trusted as a reliable platform where users simply provide their honest opinions on antivirus recommendations. At the same time, it is important to do your own research while considering Reddit recommendations as well, and not simply taking their word for it.