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Best antivirus software in Australia for 2024

Protect yourself from malware and worse with the best antivirus software for Windows, Mac and Android

The best antivirus software in Australia

Our editorial team selected the products on this list based on expert testing and actual customer reviews. For each category, we carefully selected parameters based on our research and identified the antivirus software with the highest review score and best test results within those parameters.

All choices are independently made based on our combined 60+ years of reviewing experience and are not based on commercial relationships.

Read more detail on our methodology below.


Bitdefender Total Security

Best overall antivirus software

Bitdefender Total Security
Image: Supplied/Finder

A total package with good detection rates

Bitdefender's Antivirus Security scores well with reviewers and independent AV labs for its detection rates and general performance, making it an easy recommendation for anyone wanting a set-and-forget style product.

That's for the full Bitdefender Total Security package, however, which includes client coverage for Macs and Android along with Windows. If you opt for the cheaper Antivirus Plus or Internet Security suites, you're only getting coverage for Windows PCs, although that could suit your needs quite nicely.

In independent lab tests, AV-Test noted that Bitdefender Security captured 100% of 0-Day malware attacks and new malware samples between September 2022 and October 2022, which is pleasing to see. However, they did score it downwards slightly for performance when not running scans, indicating that its memory footprint is on the larger side. That could be a concern if you're planning to use it on an older or slower PC in the first place, where you'll feel the impact of that memory footprint that much more.

Like many of its competitors, it's well worth considering which features are actually important to you when considering which level of Bitdefender it's worth subscribing to. As an example, some reviewers noted that it's annoying that while a VPN is included at some levels, if you want unlimited VPN access, you'll have to subscribe to a higher tier than the basic Antivirus Plus, which has a limited data allocation.

How do Australians rate Bitdefender's antivirus software?

87% of surveyed Australians recommend Bitdefender
4.6
Overall rating
4.2
Value for Money
4.33
Features
4.2
Customer support
4.73
Device compatibility
How Bitdefender compares

In the 2020 Finder Retail Awards, we surveyed over 14,000 Australians about their retail purchases to discover which were their favourite brands across 156 product categories.

For antivirus software, Bitdefender was ranked 2nd for value for money, 2nd for features, 2nd for customer support and 1st for device compatibility.

8 brands were rated across these decision criteria.


Microsoft Defender

Best free antivirus software

Microsoft Defender
Image: Supplied/Finder

Pros

  • Built into Windows 10 and 11
  • Surprisingly good malware detection

Cons

  • Some features only work with Microsoft products, like its Edge browser
  • More false positives than other free products

Microsoft’s basic security package covers the basics well

For the longest time, Microsoft's in-house antivirus products were a bit of a joke. Yes, they were better than absolutely nothing, but time and time again, when they were evaluated by independent labs, they were found badly wanting when it came time to detect actual viruses.

That's changed markedly in recent years, with Microsoft truly stepping up its game and delivering a free antivirus solution that often ranks right up there with the very best in terms of detection and prevention. Ultimately, that's what you want out of an antivirus package.

Not that you get everything and that it's all perfect. Some tests noted that Microsoft Defender is rather more happy to declare a false positive result when scanning than other suites. As such, you may spend more time working out whether you actually do need to quarantine or delete a "suspicious" file if you're certain it's on the level.

Not surprisingly, it's also strongly tied into Microsoft-specific services and software, so there's no coverage for Macs, Android devices or other platforms, and if you're not using Microsoft Edge, there are some features that just plain won't work.


Sophos Intercept X

Best antivirus software for small businesses

Sophos Intercept X
Image: Supplied/Finder

Pros

  • Easy to manage
  • Includes VPN

Cons

  • Setting policies is powerful – but quite complex
  • Doesn’t cover Linux

Get back to business with this comprehensive security suite

Business security needs are quite different to the needs of consumers. It's not so much that the malware varies, because it's often the same exploits and the same weaknesses being targeted, so much as it is a need for both secure software and an easily deployable solution that can be scaled according to the size of your businesses.

Reviewers noted the appeal of Sophos's Intercept X for both its high level of tested malware detection as well as the power of its applications that cover everything from simple malware detection to ransomware protection.

The big challenge here, especially for smaller businesses, is that Intercept X's policy dashboard is very powerful, but it requires fine-tuning to cover your specific needs. For some very small enterprises, it may be more challenging to set up. You're covered for Windows, Mac and Android devices, but not Linux workstations if that's important to you.


Bitdefender Mobile Security

Best Android mobile antivirus software

Bitdefender Mobile Security
Image: Supplied/Finder

Pros

  • Good malware detection
  • Available in a free version

Cons

  • Doesn’t include VPN coverage for the basic mobile product
  • You may already get Android coverage with other AV suites

Keep your smartphone safe the smart way

The Android malware field is a smaller one than for Windows, but it's still definitely an issue, and one that Google's own Play Protect service does a mediocre-at-best job of addressing.

Bitdefender's Mobile Security is a standalone package available either as a free basic package or as a subscription app that adds features such as website analysis and scam alerts. It's also part of some of the company's full security suites, so it's well worth checking if you do need to pay more if you're already a Bitdefender subscriber. Naturally, the same advice applies if you're a subscriber to other security suites – always check if Android is covered by the fee you're already paying.

In terms of detection and ease of use, Bitdefender Mobile scored well at AV-Test and AV-Comparatives, with notably high levels of malware detection and notable ease of use as positive factors. One downside here is that the basic product doesn't include VPN access, and even at higher tiers, you may only get a small quantity of covered VPN data to use.

How do Australians rate Bitdefender's antivirus software?

87% of surveyed Australians recommend Bitdefender
4.6
Overall rating
4.2
Value for Money
4.33
Features
4.2
Customer support
4.73
Device compatibility
How Bitdefender compares

In the 2020 Finder Retail Awards, we surveyed over 14,000 Australians about their retail purchases to discover which were their favourite brands across 156 product categories.

For antivirus software, Bitdefender was ranked 2nd for value for money, 2nd for features, 2nd for customer support and 1st for device compatibility.

8 brands were rated across these decision criteria.


Bitdefender Total Security

Best antivirus software for Windows

Bitdefender Total Security
Image: Supplied/Finder

Easily detect and delete malware – before it does its worst.

There's a lot of choice in the Windows AV market, and that shouldn't surprise anybody. While there has been growth in Mac and Android malware in recent years, Windows is still the target of choice when it comes to malware writers. That's to an extent less to do with inherent security and more to do with its popularity as the desktop operating system of choice worldwide. There are more Windows machines out there, so there's a lot more malware as a result.

That's why Bitdefender's Total Security gets our pick as the best of the best when it comes to Windows AV suites. When it comes time to scan, independent tests show it detecting to be among the very best that you can get for any consumer suite, while eating up relatively few system resources while doing so. While the Total Package covers additional platforms, if you're only looking to cover a Windows PC, you can get by with the lower-tier solutions instead.

In independent lab tests, AV-Test noted that Bitdefender Security captured 100% of 0-Day malware attacks and new malware samples between September 2022 and October 2022. However, it did score a little worse for its memory footprint, which is the quantity of memory it needs just to stay resident and protect you. If you're installing it on a very low-power Windows PC, this is worth keeping in mind.

The Total Security package is Bitdefender's full-fat solution with all the trimmings, and it's smart to consider which features you'll actually need and are worth paying for – or those that are omitted at the cheaper tiers. As an example, while you get Bitdefender's VPN at all suite levels, the basic Antivirus Plus package only covers a meagre 200MB of usage per day.

How do Australians rate Bitdefender's antivirus software?

87% of surveyed Australians recommend Bitdefender
4.6
Overall rating
4.2
Value for Money
4.33
Features
4.2
Customer support
4.73
Device compatibility
How Bitdefender compares

In the 2020 Finder Retail Awards, we surveyed over 14,000 Australians about their retail purchases to discover which were their favourite brands across 156 product categories.

For antivirus software, Bitdefender was ranked 2nd for value for money, 2nd for features, 2nd for customer support and 1st for device compatibility.

8 brands were rated across these decision criteria.


Avast Security For Mac

Best antivirus software for Mac

Avast Security For Mac
Image: Supplied/Finder

Pros

  • Fast and accurate scanning
  • Free version might be enough for consumers

Cons

  • Ransomware protection is a paid-only feature
  • UI is a touch basic

Yes, you very much can get malware on your Mac – so it's best to stay safe.

Viruses on Macs? Really? Yes, despite all those ads years ago assuring Mac users that viruses were a Windows-only problem, the online threat landscape now also encompasses Macs. That's why it's genuinely a good step to ensure that your Mac is covered by some kind of AV solution.

Avast scored well with reviewers for a couple of reasons. If you're a consumer using your Mac for non-business purposes, its free tier does very well, covering the basics of security and AV scanning in a speedy and relatively unobtrusive way. Paid tiers do offer additional features, most notably ransomware scanning and support for multiple Macs if that's important to you. Avast's UI is quite simple, which will suit basic users nicely, although power users might find it a touch on the plain side.

In independent lab tests, Avast also scored well, with AV-Comparatives noting that it detected 100% of Mac malware, 99% of potentially unwanted applications and 100% of its test Windows malware files. You might be thinking that Windows detection on a Mac isn't important, but it's a useful feature to ensure that you don't pass on dodgy apps to your Windows-using colleagues as well.

How do Australians rate Avast's antivirus software?

85% of surveyed Australians recommend Avast
4.2
Value for money
4.1
Overall
4.2
Performance
3.8
Customer service
4.2
Ease of use
4.2
Features and design
How Avast compares

In the 2023 Finder Retail Awards, we surveyed over 34,000 Australians about their retail purchases to discover which were their favourite brands across 170 product categories and over 1,200 total brands.

For antivirus software, Avast was ranked 3rd for value for money, 6th for performance, 8th for customer service, 3rd for ease of use and 3rd for features and design.

10 brands were rated across these decision criteria.


Norton 360 Deluxe

Best antivirus software for families

Norton 360 Deluxe
Image: Supplied/Finder

Pros

  • Covers a wide array of devices
  • VPN with unlimited bandwidth included

Cons

  • Parental control features don’t work on macOS
  • Online backups are Windows-only

Keep the entire family safe no matter what you do online

Keeping your family safe online is a tricky business because the needs of families small and large vary a lot, as do their online activities. That's where a complete security suite like Norton 360 Deluxe may suit you well. It's the full-fat version of Norton 360 with coverage for Windows, Android, iOS and Macs included as standard.

Reviewers noted that it was particularly family-friendly for Windows households, thanks to specific parental control features that work across Windows, iOS and Android, but annoyingly not the Mac platform. They allow you to set effective rules for your child that can be monitored and modified over time as your child's needs and online wants change.

In terms of straight malware protection, Norton 360 scored well, with AV-Test awarding it top marks for protection, performance and usability as well as noting its 100% success rate in detecting Windows-based malware. It's notable that Norton has improved markedly in recent years in AV-Test's scoring system where it used to struggle with performance and detection rates rather badly.

Deal

$45 off Norton 360 Standard

Have multiple layers of protection for your devices and get $45 off Norton 360 Standard at Norton. T&Cs apply.

How do Australians rate Norton's antivirus software?

81% of surveyed Australians recommend Norton
3.9
Value for money
4.2
Overall
4.3
Performance
4
Customer service
4.1
Ease of use
4.2
Features and design
How Norton compares

In the 2023 Finder Retail Awards, we surveyed over 34,000 Australians about their retail purchases to discover which were their favourite brands across 170 product categories and over 1,200 total brands.

For antivirus software, Norton was ranked 8th for value for money, 4th for performance, 7th for customer service, 6th for ease of use and 3rd for features and design.

10 brands were rated across these decision criteria.


Save on Antivirus with these deals and discounts:

NortonNorton

Up to $46 off Norton 360 and Antivirus Plus

Avast SoftwareAvast Software

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Ends

ESET SoftwareESET Software

Secure all your devices with ESET


Amazon prices last updated on 22 April, 2024 at 04:23 am
eBay prices last updated on 21 April, 2024 at 12:16 pm

How did we pick this list?

30+
Brands considered
80+
Products compared
7
Best products chosen
  • We considered antivirus software from over 30 leading brands.
  • Our editorial team has a combined 60+ years of experience writing about tech and reviewing the latest software.
  • The products on this list are chosen by our editorial team and are not selected based on commercial relationships.

Why you can trust our picks

For each category, we assembled a list of available antivirus software from all major providers that fit the criteria, including free suites, suites that target mobile platforms or specific operating systems such as Windows or MacOS.

We then compared real-world professional reviews of these suites, taking into consideration their findings, local pricing as well as independent lab tests of major suites from both AV-Test and AV-Comparatives. Both labs independently test AV software on a regular rolling basis, allowing us to assess not only how good a product is at a point in time, but also historically how well that software has performed.

Taking these factors into account, and then considering issues such as the number of devices covered, key protection features and cost, we were finally able to decide on our top picks.

We considered antivirus software from the following brands:

  • Ahnlab
  • Avast
  • AVG
  • Avira
  • Bitdefender
  • Clam
  • Clario
  • Crowdstrike
  • eScan
  • ESET
  • F-Secure
  • G DATA
  • Google
  • Heimdal
  • Ikarus
  • Intego
  • K7 Computing
  • Kaspersky
  • Lookout Security
  • Mackeeper
  • Malwarebytes
  • McAfee
  • Microsoft
  • Norton
  • NSHC
  • Panda
  • PC Matic
  • Securion
  • Sophos
  • Total AV
  • Trend Micro
  • VIPRE
  • Webroot
  • WithSecure

Frequently Asked Questions


Customer satisfaction rating breakdown

The Finder Customer Satisfaction Awards is an annual national survey conducted in partnership with research firm Dynata. With over 30,000 real shoppers participating, the awards serve as a reliable reflection of Australian consumers' preferences and opinions.
Here are scores for antivirus software brands from 2024.

Brand Customer service Ease of use Features and design Overall Performance Value for money Recommended Total Score
ESET 4.1 4.5 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.4 94% 4.46
Kaspersky 4.1 4.4 4.4 4.4 4.4 4.3 87% 4.34
Trend Micro 4.1 4.2 4.2 4.3 4.3 4.1 88% 4.23
Bit Defender 4.1 4.2 4.1 4.2 4.4 4.2 84% 4.2
F Secure 4.1 4 4.2 4.3 4 4.1 88% 4.1571
Panda 4.1 4.1 4.1 4.2 4.1 4.2 86% 4.1571
Avast 3.8 4.2 4.2 4.1 4.2 4.2 85% 4.14
Norton 4 4.1 4.2 4.2 4.3 3.9 81% 4.11
AVG 3.6 4 3.9 3.9 4 3.8 66% 3.79
McAfee 3.5 3.7 3.7 3.7 3.8 3.6 67% 3.62
Data: Finder Retail Brand Survey, 2023, Kantar. Metric out of 5 stars unless indicated. Methodology and more info. Kantar logo

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