The best antivirus protection for Windows 10 in 2020

Your Windows PC needs protection against malware, and free antivirus software may be Here's the best antivirus protection for Windows 10, and what's worth paying extra for.

Curated via Twitter from CNET News’s twitter account….

And here’s the first thing to know about searching for the best antivirus software, malware protection and antivirus products: Microsoft Defender Antivirus — the free virus protection program and internet security software that comes with Windows 10 and until recently was called Windows Defender — does a good job of protecting your PC and providing internet security. (Amazingly, Microsoft provided no built-in protection for Windows back in the days of Windows 98 and XP. ) Using Microsoft Defender should be your starting point for the best antivirus security on Windows, and most people will find they don’t need to go any further.

A five-device subscription for Norton 360 with LifeLock Select is normally $150, but you can sign up for $100 for the first year to get coverage across your PCs, Mac computer, Android devices, and iPhones and iPads. (Note, we don’t think antivirus protection is terribly useful outside the Windows realm. ) In addition to malware and virus protection for your computer¬†and mobile device, this security suite provides 100GB of backup to the cloud, safe-browsing tools, a VPN, password manager, parental controls and LifeLock identity theft protection and fraud alert.

And with the free Microsoft Defender Antivirus software running on Windows 10, you have a malware protection safety net if you do let your guard down. (Note that Microsoft changed the name of Windows Defender to Microsoft Defender and has expanded the service to other platforms. ) This antivirus program is built into Windows and it’s turned on by default, so just let it do its thing, and this antivirus solution will cover the basics of internet security.

But for Windows users, that list of internet security and antivirus tools also needs to include antivirus software and malware protection that monitors downloads and observes your system’s activity for malicious software and suspicious software behavior.

And it’s been around forever because quarter after quarter it creates solid, modern antivirus software that protects your PC. (In recent evaluations by AV-Test, it had high scores on both protection and performance. ) McAfee Total Protection guards five devices against viruses and offers ransomware protection, wards off malicious websites and includes a password manager for $35 (usually $100) for the first year.

Looking for free antivirus protection, malware protection or virus detection, willing to pay for an antivirus program that offers broad internet security coverage across all your devices, including from ransomware and phishing, or need to remove a computer virus or¬†malware from your PC right now? Here’s where to start.

Your Windows PC needs protection against malware, and free antivirus software may be enough.

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