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Overview

ESET is an affordable and reliable antivirus solution that does an impressive job of keeping any computer virus free. And this only becomes clearer when you consider the results from some of the leading independent labs. In fact, ESET is one of only a handful of antivirus programs to be rated Advanced+ for everything from overall virus protection and malware detection to malicious file removal. In a range of tests conducted by Dennis Technology Labs, ESET was awarded the highest rating - AAA certification - for its overall performance.

It’s worth noting that the AV-Test Institute didn’t rate this antivirus software as favorably. This despite the fact that in all tests run the antivirus removed all malicious threats. When it comes to virus protection, you’d be hard pressed to find a better solution than ESET. Where this software loses a few points is when it comes to performance. The software may slow your computer’s performance slightly and you may notice that it fails to remove some non-executable threats. But overall, this is a reliable option that should give you the peace of mind to surf the net without a second thought.

Compatibility

When it comes to compatibility, ESET works well on PC, Mac as well as a range of mobile devices. Its selection is more extensive than most software providers on the market and in addition to Windows and Mac OS, includes support for Linux, Symbian, Android and iOS. And for those with a range of devices looking for a complete solution, look no further. ESET also offers a multi-device support package to keep all devices safe and secure.

Spyware, Malware & Ransomware Scans

ESET is a bit disappointing when it comes to detecting malicious links. In tests conducted by PCMag, ESET was found to detect malware only after it had been installed several times.PCMag also found that it took the software an abnormally long time to perform a malware scan. In one test it took over 20 minutes to complete the most basic malware scan. Even after this scan, the software failed to remove several malicious executable links. When it comes to spyware and malware removal, ESET leaves a lot to be desired.

While this may not be the best malware detector around, other tests by PCMag estimate that on average it blocks just over 80 percent of malware. With the emergence of Ransomware, ESET has also implemented SysRescue, a service is tailored to prevent, protect, and eliminate this highly difficult to combat form of malware.

Email Scans

All emails are thoroughly scanned for any potential threats and spam. In addition to email scans, ESET offers protection for both inbound and outbound emails. This makes sure all emails are virus and malware free. Most independent tests found ESET’s email scanning to be highly effective at both filtering spam and keeping the inbox free of malicious content. It’s also worth noting that in almost all tests no valid emails were incorrectly caught by the spam or email protection filters.

Download Protection

While ESET does automatically scan all files before they’re accessed, the software isn’t always that accurate. In a handful of tests conducted by PCMag, ESET failed to detect malicious content. ESET is also lacking when it comes to phishing protection. In tests conducted by PCMag, it found that in almost all cases ESET failed to pick up on a phishing website that other antivirus software detected without any trouble.

Resource Usage

Overall ESET’s resource usage is minimal and quite impressive for such a hefty piece of software. Most tests found that unless a deep level virus scan was being run, CPU usage was never more than 1 percent. This is much less than similar products on the market, and means you’re unlikely to really notice that ESET is running in the background.

When it comes to a full system scan, the CPU usage was more intensive and tended to spike to as high as 90 percent. While inconvenient this shouldn’t happen too often. In fact, once files have been scanned in a full system scan they’re unlikely to be scanned again. This reduces the resource usage in future scans.

Real-time Scanning

It’s hard to find fault with ESET’s real-time protection. This scans all files automatically for any malicious code and includes files that are opened, run or even created. Real-time scanning is launched at system startup and works seamlessly in the background. While this can easily be disabled under settings, this is not recommended. ESET’s automatic virus protection provides an added level of security to keep your computer or mobile device functioning at its best.

Privacy Policy

ESET’s privacy policy clearly states that both personal and non-personal data are collected. This includes anything entered on the ESET website as well as user activity. While this may seem like an invasion of privacy, ESET guarantees that any data collected will be securely stored and will never be shared with third parties. Furthermore, only data which can improve ESET’s products and the antivirus protection offered will be collected.

Customer Support

The technical and customer support on offer are adequate but stop short of being impressive. This includes a selection of instructional videos, a comprehensive knowledge base as well as a forum with the most commonly asked questions. Unlike other antivirus providers, there is no live chat or customer support line. At best you can submit a question or open a ticket. While these are generally answered within an hour, we found the support to be lacking.

Basic Antivirus for WindowsAdvanced Antivirus for WindowsAdvanced Antivirus Pack
Price per year$50.99$76.49$110.49
Devices116
License duration2 years2 years2 years
Mobile security (for both Android and iOS)
Supports PC
Anti-spam
Anti-spyware
Anti-adware
Anti-malware
Real-time protection
Email protection
Firewall
Wi-Fi protection
Parental control
Identity protection
Supports Mac

Pros

  • High usability scores

  • Effective malware removal

  • Ideal for beginners

Cons

  • No phone support

  • Poor phishing detection

Bottom Line

ESET is a good choice for users looking for comprehensive anti-malware and antivirus solutions.

Compatibility

Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 2000, MAC OS x, Android, Linux/Unix

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