Antivirus wars: Bitdefender vs. Norton vs. F-Secure

As we know an antivirus software on your computer is an absolutely necessary piece of software if you want to have a healthy and well working system. Not to mention privacy and data security. Today, we would like to share our experience of testing a few, popular and well-known antivirus software solutions, with you. Let's make a little test: Bitdefender Antivirus Plus vs Norton Security Premium vs F-Secure Internet Security


BitDefender is described as supreme security and uncompromising performance, there isn't a better choice anywhere. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus protects against even the most dangerous e-threats without straining your system's resources. This means you get pure performance, with no slowdowns. With Autopilot switched on, it safeguards your data, your online transactions, and your privacy - and it won't bother you with needless dialog boxes and alerts. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus gives you unmatched protection against sophisticated ransomware attacks that attempt to steal and encrypt your personal files. And with Wi-Fi Security, you'll always know if the Wi-Fi networks you connect to when you are away from home are trustworthy. And to be perfectly honest, we can not argue with this that much.

The description for Norton antivirus sounds like this: Norton Security Premium protects your whole family of up to 10 devices and the people who use them. Safeguard account numbers and photos on your PCs and Macs, contacts on your smartphones and private data on your tablets from criminals trying to gain access to them. It's all backed by our unique 100% guarantee. Plus, help protect your children from unsafe content and guard against oversharing. There is a lot of truth about the features in these words. However, there is not one word about the performance, that's why we just had to put it to the test.

F-Secure's description states: DON'T WORRY, BE SAFE F‑Secure Internet Security's award-winning protection lets you use your computer to surf the web, shop online, and use Internet banking without worrying. F‑Secure Internet Security automatically protects you and your PCs against malware, hackers, and identity theft. Whenever you go online, your banking transactions are secured with banking protection, and you can decide what content your children can and cannot see. F‑Secure Internet Security protects you against existing and emerging online threats. It's very quick to install, simple to use, and it doesn't slow down your computer. When you install F‑Secure Internet Security, it cleans your PC so that you get instantly improved performance. You also get F‑Secure Search, which pre-screens your search results to ensure your privacy and safety. Apart from some marketing description is telling the truth. As our test results showed, F-Secure is a true performer and can even work as a two-in-one solution. More on that later.

Now, let's talk about how our testing was done and what it has shown.

The testing was done on multiple computers. Few laptops and one custom build tower PC. We want to get the most realistic performance measures from all three products in daily use scenario.

Some people are calling Bitdefender as the elite member of worldwide known anti-virus solutions. Same goes for F-Secure as well. It's very transparent, easy to use, a fast and powerful tool that allows you to have a well-rounded security suite on your computer.

We have not run into some kind of issue by using it and computer performed as speedy as it was before. However, it is worth mentioning that update process of this product is a bit annoying. You have to restart your computer each time for an update to be applied. That's very time consuming and inconvenient in our book.

The other product from our test, Norton Security Premium has some, quite remarkable and interested, features like SONAR (behavior protection) build in. Norton showed the best performance with cloud technologies.

However, not all things are so great - we have encountered some weird restarts (on PC tower), computers speeds have dropped a bit (that affected all computers) and laptop started to take much longer to boot to the OS (Windows 10).

It's worth mentioning that whole Norton's software line was rewritten a few years back because it was vulnerable to the hackers. We can see that as a good thing now, because it means, that all issues have been solved and patched.

One more awesome thing about Norton - it is way less intrusive than BitDefender. You can install it and forget it.

And now to the F-Secure - it just simply amazed us! First of all, the user interface is by far the easy to navigate, it did not affect computers performance at all and provided a smooth and reliable cloud experience.

F-Secure uses the very similar engine as BitDefender, probably that's why both product we performing very similarly in our test. However, we do notice that web browsing has been slow down a bit by this product.

On the other hand, F-Secure is equipped with malware protection right out the box, so you do not need to use an additional product (like Malwarebytes) to be protected against another kind of threats from the worldwide web. As well, F-Secure's web filtering system works with Sandboxie, which is another awesome addition to the versatility of it.

One more thing - F-Secure is using behavior analysis method called Behavioral Blocker. It works very similar to the solution provided by Norton and we can only give thumbs up for this feature.

Unfortunately, there is no clear winner in this test. We do still believe, that anti-virus software solution should just be another addition to your home network protection scheme and not the only one, that is used there. However, F-Secure and Bitdefender have amazed us the most. We already knew, that Norton product is strong and well rounded but it became a bit beaten by other competitors of our test.

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