Several top antivirus programs offer free versions that are as effective at preventing malware as their premium counterparts. Most antivirus programs have a low-end, basic program with basic features, a middle-range program that has additional security tools and the top-end version that comes with all the bells and whistles.

AVG Antivirus The free version of the program offers superior malware protection with a minimal impact on the system. AVG Antivirus is free and includes a number of other handy tools like junk file cleaning, RAM optimization and Wi-Fi network scanners. It is also ad-free and doesn’t prompt you to upgrade to premium features.

Microsoft Defender is the default security software for malware that is click over here preinstalled on Windows systems. Although it’s not the greatest in stopping malware files from downloading on your PC, its free version offers a lot of additional tools, including health and performance analysis and parental controls that aren’t available in paid versions of other antivirus programs.

Bitdefender’s suites of antivirus programs are among the most popular in the market. The free version is just as robust and effective as paid versions. It’s ad-free and isn’t limited in the number of devices it can be able to scan and has a complete range of anti-theft tools, such as the ability to locate, lock or wipe the contents of a stolen Android device.

Sophos Home Free is perfect for those who have to manage antivirus protection for the computer of a family member who doesn’t live in the same household with them. It has excellent scores for malware detection but a lower score for the phishing.