Avast Antivirus Review: Is It Worth Using? Or Better to Avoid?
Let us start our Avast antivirus review by saying that Avast is a famous name in the world of free antivirus software, as evidenced by its millions of users around the world.
However, in January 2020, Avast was caught in a scandal which was telling that Avast’s antivirus software appears to track users’ clicks and movements across the web, collect data and even sold privacy-sensitive data on millions of its users to tech and advertising companies
In this case, we won’t recommend Avast Antivirus as the best free antivirus software on the market. But you can still read the full review of Avast Antivirus to decide to use it or avoid it.
Installation and Interface
Avast Antivirus software is available for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android device. In this pots, we test it on Windows 10.
First of all, you can go to the official website of Avast to download Avast Free Antivirus on your computer. Normally, the whole installation process will not take up more than 10 minutes. However, please pat attention that you’ll be asked to install Avast’s web browser or some other program or tool during installation. These additions are not required; just uncheck the boxes if you’re not interested.
Even for the free version of Avast Antivirus, you’re required to register to use it for more than 30 days. The registration is free and you’ll also have to re-register once each year, but again, this is free.
Its interface is simple and modern. There is a useful and versatile column with all the features provided in an elegant fashion. When you boot up Avast, you get a splash screen a big “scan now” button in the middle.
The Home screen of Avast has organized all of its features into four categories, which can be accessed by the four buttons placed in the program sidebar.
The Status button is your way to the Home screen of the program. It displays the messages about system’s status – is there are any issues, threats or it everything is protected.
Click around the Protection, Privacy and Performance panes and you’ll find icons for 18 features – but only a minority of these are included in the free edition of the software, while the rest are marked with small padlock overlays. With Free Antivirus, you can:
- Detect viruses, ransomware, and other threats in real-time.
- Find intruders and security weaknesses in your network.
- Protect personal photos and files from being encrypted by hackers.
The “Privacy”section includes password protection, data shredder, secureline VPN, webcam shield, antitrack premium and sensitive data shield. However, all of these features can only be used in Premium version.
Do Not Disturb Mode: It can block pop-ups while any program is in full screen mode, or while gaming or watching movies. This is great so that you don’t see update or virus alerts while presenting something or playing a live game.
Software updater: All Avast products come with software updater functionality. Old software is a danger to your device, and updates are crucial to eliminate vulnerabilities. Premier and Ultimate run the updater automatically, while the Free version need a manual start.
Security & Protection
Security is of course the most important feature of a virus scanner. Can Avast keep your computer safe from Trojans, malware attacks and spyware? How effective is the virus scanner?
To test the safety of Avast, we took a closer look at the VB100, AV-Test and AV-Comparatives. Avast performed very well in all tests.
In the April 2020 report of VB100, Avast Passed the VB100 test.
The Latest AV-Test (August 2020) scores of Avast are:
- Protection – 6/6
- Performance – 5.5/6
- Usability – 6/6
Following are the scores of Avast in AV-Comparatives’ latest Real-World Protection Test (August 2020):
- Blocked – 99.7%
Avast has 3 different plans: Avast Free and Avast Premium Security and Avast Ultimate.
- The free version, Avast Free, will cost you nothing. Avast is one of the few antivirus vendors to offer their services completely free — however, the user must then accept occasionally seeing ads. Also, In the free version, some of the messages are designed to give the impression that the computer is not secure and the purchase of additional Avast Security is necessary. However, if you don’t want to skip the ads, you don’t need to waste the money.
- Avast Premium Security package will cost you $69.99 per year (full price) and can be used on one device. You can try this version for free for 30 days. You will have to choose between PC, Mac, Android or iPhone/iPad to download the correct version. You can also pay $89.99 per year (full price) for 10 devices. In this case, you can use this subscription on PC, Mac, Android and iOS simultaneously.
- Avast Ultimate will cost you $99.99 per year for 1 device. The same, you can pay $119.99 for using the software on 10 devices.
|Free Antivirus||Avast Premium Security||Avast Ultimate|
|Block viruses and malware||√||√||√|
|Protect against ransomware||√||√||√|
|Verify Wi-Fi network security||×||√||√|
|Avoid fake and unsafe websites||×||√||√|
|Secure against phishing sites||×||√||√|
|Stop PC remote access attacks||×||√||√|
|SecureLine VPN for your safety and online privacy||×||×||√|
|Cleanup Premium to clean and tune up your PC||×||×||√|
Avast Antivirus Pros and Cons
- Compatible with all platforms including Windows 10, Mac, Android, iOS.
- Avast offers a very complete antivirus package with tons of useful safety options and features.
- The free version already offers a very good level of protection.
- Avast has sold user data in the past to third parties.
- Even when using the “premium security” version, some extra features require you to pay additional charges.
Avast Antivirus Review: Summary
Here are Avast’s scores for each component:
- Security: 8.0
- Software and features: 8.0
- Privacy: 3.0
- Final score: 6.3
In our Avast Antivirus Review, Avast Antivirus is passable. Yes, it is passable, but not qualified.
For price, it has won me over with its free version, but it has lost its balance when it comes to paid and premium pricing. The features here won’t make you much more secure than the free software.
For privacy, actually users could indicate in their settings whether or not they wanted to participate in the data collection. Yet many Avast users were unaware that this data was subsequently being sold and unknowingly opted in. In other words, Avast was not transparent about the process and did not sufficiently monitor user privacy.