Antivirus Comparison: ESET vs. Kaspersky Lab vs. Avira

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If you want free for a while longer than just a free trial, Avira has a free solution. This could be an effective choice for people who want to try out Antivirus software on more of a long term basis instead of making a decision quicker. ESET is an effec

Which Antivirus Service Keeps You Safest?

Viruses on the Internet can completely destroy your computer, leave it inoperable, or steal your personal data. That’s why it’s essential that you get some antivirus software that meets your particular needs, especially if you have a PC.


ESET has the NOD32 antivirus solution. It costs about 40 dollars a year for a license for a single computer. You can license up to 5 PCs per year for about 100 dollars. You can also get 2 year plans for a reduced rate. Additionally, there’s a “Family Security Pack” that lets you use on 5 computers for 2 years on 3 different operating systems for a reduced rate. The ESET mobile security pack is 20 dollars for the mobile system of your choice including Symbian, Android, or Windows Mobile.



  • Deals with both viruses and malware
  • Scanning powered with Cloud Computing-This makes for faster scanning since the software is actually using ESET’s own database for file comparison.
  • File download scanning-NOD32 for ESET will actually scan your files as they download, which helps cut time.
  • Phishing Protection-a “phishing scheme” occurs when someone emails you while pretending to be from a legitimate website like a bank or another important site. ESET helps prevent these schemes on your computer.
  • Block Data Copying and Foreign Media- ESET has the unique ability to allow you to keep anyone from copying sensitive info from your computer onto devices like flash drives, thumb drives, cards, or disks.
  • Block Program Changes-Many viruses try to change your computer’s programs, including its anti-virus software as a strategy.
  • System-Resource Saving Features- The ESET software specifically makes sure to save your bandwidth by downloading updates in a frugal way. It also has features such as “Battery saving mode” for laptops and “Gamer mode” for using less resources while you’re playing games.


-Block percentage and malware

Some users have noticed that ESET software isn’t as effective as even some free solutions when it comes to removing malware. As far as the efficiency of blocking threats is concerned, ESET usually scores somewhere in the middle of the road. For example, the Whole Product test showed it blocked around 98 % of the potential problems posed to it.

User Interface

Some of the features are difficult to find, including “Advanced Settings.”



ESET actually includes educational materials for running its software, including an interactive city to make the process more interesting. There are also forums, Q&A packages, and regular email support.

-Speed and Resources

The different modes like “gamer mode” and “battery saving mode” ensures that the active virus protection won’t make your computer too slow. The cloud computing scanning will also ensure scans don’t take all day.

Kaspersky Labs

Kaspersky Labs offers a variety of anti-virus solutions that range in price between the mobile apps that are 10 or so for the Mobile Security app, and the “Table Security” app which is 20, to the standard Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2013 program which is 60 dollars. For a bit more money you can also buy something specifically for Internet Security, or one of the packages which can work for multiple devices. The standard rate is for 3 PCs for 1 year.


-Protects your computer in real time. The software also allows for updates to make sure you can fight the latest viral threats.

-Antimalware and rollback protection. This allows Kaspersky to automatically repair any damage caused by malware by rolling back damage caused.


-Vulnerability Protection- Kaspersky has the ability to identify vulnerable programs on your computer and automatically restrict these programs activities to minimize potential damage, even if the threat hasn’t been identified yet.

-Virtual Keyboard- The virtual keyboard options allows you to enter banking information through mouse-clicks on a virtual keyboard. This makes it nearly impossible for anyone to steal your information through a keylogger or other means, since there are no keystrokes to steal.

-Free Trial


-Extra Protection

Kaspersky includes extra protection features for covering program vulnerabilities that helps it win out more often than not against threats, even if the software doesn’t have the definitions for it yet. It also has “special” and “multiple” scans to be as thorough as possible in scouring threats.


Kaspersky scans can take an exceptionally long time, which can be more of a strain on resources compared to ESET or Avira.

Avira US

Avira offers Antivirus software packages that vary between around $37 and $82 per year for 1 PC. The features offered will vary based on which software you choose. The cheapest version tends to be a little cheaper than the other anti-virus packages like ESET or Kaspersky at the same level.


-Free 30 Day Trial 

-Block Tracker Cookies

-Website Safety Advisor- The “Website Safety Advisor” helps prevent you from getting viruses and Trojans in the first place by warning you when the site you were planning on navigating to is dangerous and potentially full of threats that will download right away without your knowledge

-Free Option-Avira often has an extended trial that lets you continue to use the free version as long as you don’t mind the popups for advertising that occur after around the 30 day mark.

-Web Guard (The paid version allows for real time protection from malware problems while browsing online.



The free version is quite limited and offers almost no Internet protection. The toolbar that installs automatically unless you specifically remove it during installation can cause browser interference as well.


Though it costs more, Avira has extra Internet protections that other anti-virus sites don’t have as much, like protection from tracker cookies, as well as a built-in site advisor.

Take-Away Points


So if you want-

-Free: Go with Avira, which has an extended free version available.

-Laptop Protection- Go with ESET which has extended gaming and battery options you can use which are better for laptop use.

-Total Virus Annihilation- Go with Kaspersky that has a multiple scan option for missing any threats the first scans missed. It’s also effective at using techniques to isolate threats it hasn’t identified such as the vulnerability scan.

1 comment

Vishakha Bansal
Posted on Feb 8, 2013