As hackers get more creative, antivirus programs grow equally stronger by offering various features and tools to help combat the peskiest of Trojan horses and worms.
Kaspersky might seem like just another fish in the antivirus sea, but our Kaspersky AntiVirus review is here to tell you why it’s worth the catch.
Keep on reading to find out what our TakeATumble team put together!
- 100% malware detection
- Multiple scanning options
- Total internet security for Android
- Low performance impact
- Easy to use
- Great price deals
- Reputation downfall due to Russian government allegations
- Lacks features on iOS
- Limited VPN data
|Value for money||9.5|
Whether it’s the Kaspersky free edition or the top-of-the-line Total Security, Kaspersky’s programs strive to keep you protected from malicious attacks with the help of cloud-based machine learning. Even though its malware scanner might let a few threats slip through, Kaspersky AntiVirus offers impressive features and a fast speed with just a minor influence on your computer’s performance. Kaspersky’s software is one of the best on the market. Keep on reading our review to discover its unique features.
Outstanding Virus Engine
Similar to its top competitors Norton and McAfee, Kaspersky’s antivirus scanner combines an extensive Kaspersky malware list and machine learning to detect computer viruses. After the scanner detects a potentially malicious file, it’s uploaded to a cloud-based scanner which confirms if a file really is malware. Kaspersky offers five scanning options:
- Quick Scan – runs a scan of system startup and system memory files, as well as boot sectors;
- Full Scan – performs a complete scan of all files and folders on your computer;
- Selective Scan – scans specified files or folders;
- Removable Drive Scan – inspects removable drives;
- Vulnerability Scan – looks for any expired applications and software potentially infected by malware
Aside from the various scanning options, Kaspersky allows you to schedule a scan at a specific time, after an update, or after starting the application.
Kaspersky’s Quick Scan stays true to its name, taking just two minutes to complete. Naturally, a quick scan isn’t able to detect all malware files, so Kaspersky suggests a full scan immediately after. The Full Scan takes about 45 minutes, which is quite better compared to Bitdefender, whose full scan takes approximately an hour.
After the scan finishes, the isolated malware files appear in the ‘Quarantine’ window, from where any false positives can be restored. Should you interrupt the scan earlier, the malicious files won’t be taken care of. However, you can always check the Notification Center to find more options for resolving the malware found during the cancelled scan.
Kaspersky’s real-time protection performs smoothly, scanning installed apps quietly in the background and efficiently blocking all malware. Additionally, the Vulnerability Scan looks for outdated applications and software that can be potential targets of cyberattacks. One disadvantage of Kaspersky AntiVirus is that it doesn’t offer an auto-update feature that fixes weaknesses in your system.
If you’re up for a scan but don’t want to buy the whole package, the Kaspersky free scan tool available on their website will do a great job.
The overall performance of Kaspersky’s antivirus detection is quite decent, boasting a 100% detection rate and near-perfect real-time protection, all with minimal system impact.
The Web Anti-Virus feature of Kaspersky AntiVirus makes sure to protect the information shared via HTTP and HTTPS data transfer on Firefox, Chrome, or Google browsers. The Web Anti-Virus component successfully detects and prevents malicious URLs by comparing the websites you visit with a database of malicious links. The additional heuristic analysis checks URLs for suspicious activity.
Another helpful feature of Kaspersky AntiVirus is the anti-tracking, which essentially blocks user data from being collected from social networks or ad agencies. Users can still allow data collection on certain websites.
The browser extension provides a virtual keyboard, another awesome tool that guards you against keylogging. You can also use it together with Safe Money, Kaspersky’s secure online finances browser. To stop hackers from taking over your device, Avast browser protection tools identify suspicious URLs and ensure browser security even before a connection is established.
Sadly, the Kaspersky AntiVirus basic program doesn’t provide a firewall, but the Internet Security and Total Protection do. A personal firewall is an essential tool after ensuring your browser is safe from malware. It will observe your internet connection for any sneaky hackers or ransomware and prevent piggybacking, an action performed by users who use your Wi-Fi instead of paying for their own.
PC Cleanup Tools
Kaspersky’s PC Cleaner performs scans of your computer and looks for any apps or browser extensions that need to be removed or fixed while only taking two minutes. It efficiently discovers all bloatware (pre-installed computer software) and offers possibilities to ignore or remove each program, as well as google it to find out more information. The PC Cleaner also lists categories of apps you want to fix, such as apps providing false information, involuntarily installed apps, apps that slow down your computer, etc.
The Unused Data Cleaner inspects temporary files or files located in the Recycle Bin. It takes less than a minute to complete the scan before it finds unused files and gives you various options for handling them. Moreover, the handy Privacy Cleaner will make sure to delete your online activity tracks.
Kaspersky AntiVirus does, however, lack system optimisation tools in its basic package, which puts it at a disadvantage compared to stronger competitors like Avira.
VPN Secure Connection
All of Kaspersky’s packages, apart from the basic one, come with a VPN. Unfortunately, you only get 300 MB of data and the ability to connect to only one server. If you do enjoy Kaspersky’s VPN, however, you can buy the premium version and get unlimited browsing data. The premium version also offers servers in over 30 locations, a kill switch to stop data transfer, and Smart Protection that automatically turns on the VPN on a public network.
Netflix users might want to consider Kaspersky AntiVirus, as its VPN successfully bypasses Netflix’s pretty strong VPN detection.
Most antivirus programs offer password vaults so you can safely store your passwords and other personal or financial data. Kaspersky’s Password Manager takes care of your sensitive information using 256-bit AES encryption. You can easily access your vault with a master password or fingerprint on your mobile devices. Furthermore, Kaspersky AntiVirus provides Zero-Knowledge security, which means neither the app developer nor anybody else knows a single thing about your data.
The free version of the Password Manager only allows users to store 15 passwords, which is decent but not enough for most people. The premium version, which is only available with the most expensive package, gives an unlimited amount of passwords. To be able to auto-save and auto-fill passwords, a browser extension is necessary. However, Kaspersky only auto-fills credit card data and addresses on computers and not on mobile devices.
While it lacks features like two-factor authentication or cloud storage, Kaspersky’s Password Manager has a great password generator, and it’s effortless to use and navigate.
Kaspersky designed the parental control feature to protect your children online by allowing you to monitor and control their activities. Kaspersky’s Safe Kids app is downloaded separately and includes efficient content filtering and usage limitations, as well as social network monitoring and location tracking for Android and iOS.
Enabling Gaming Mode will pause alerts and antivirus scans while gaming or having apps on full screen. It makes sure to reduce RAM-consuming antivirus tasks and keep your computer’s speed up.
Identity theft protection
Cybercriminals are lurking around every corner to steal your identity and money. Fortunately, Kaspersky AntiVirus offers a great Anti-Phishing tool to guard you against phishing links in emails, chats and on websites. It also alerts about URLs created to steal your info, helping you avoid fake sites built to acquire your personal details. However, some other antivirus brands, like Norton, offer much more advanced id theft protection tools.
Kaspersky offers a few extra tools: Account Check, Virus Removal Tool, Rescue Disc, etc. While Kaspersky’s additional features perform decently, its packages lack more advanced tools like LifeLock identity theft protection and dark web monitoring, something its top competitor Norton can brag about.
Kaspersky AntiVirus Performance
Kaspersky’s software is intuitive and super easy to install. Taking a look at the user interface, Kaspersky made sure to keep it clean and simple by adding large, clearly distinguishable buttons for all main antivirus features. All programs have a carefully thought out design that only displays the features available on that plan without showing greyed-out and inaccessible tools.
Not all of Kaspersky’s features are easily discoverable, however, as some of them are hidden under the ‘More Tools’ button, so a bit of extra clicking is necessary. A sidebar, like TotalAV uses, would solve this problem. Once you get the gist of Kaspersky AntiVirus software, you’ll find it’s very orderly, and you can even customise it to fit your desired experience.
The Notification Center is easily accessible through Kaspersky’s main window. Any critical information will be shown here, along with options for resolving. Unlike other antiviruses whose notification centres only send alerts and redirect you to the relevant tool, the Kaspersky software enables its users to resolve issues without leaving the Notification Center, which is really helpful.
As for the installation process, downloading and setting up Kaspersky software is a piece of cake. Before installing Kaspersky AntiVirus, be sure that your computer meets the system requirements. Should you have any apps incompatible with Kaspersky AntiVirus, uninstall them to ensure the proper performance of your new antivirus software. Next, follow these steps:
- Download the installer from the link provided via email or from Kaspersky’s website.
- Run the installation wizard and wait until it looks for the latest version, or skip to install the current version. After reviewing and agreeing with the License Agreement, continue and wait for the installation process to finish.
- Select the preferred settings you want to apply, click on ‘Done’, and you’re ready to activate your license.
Kaspersky software offers multi-device licenses, just like McAfee. Depending on your license, you can install the program on 1-10 devices, including PCs, Macs, Android, and iOS mobile devices. Simply set up Kaspersky AntiVirus on all devices and use the same activation code.
Platforms and Apps
Kaspersky’s software provides exceptional protection across all platforms. Some of its competitors, like Avast, have been successfully doing the same. Although Macs have fewer malware threats to worry about than Windows PCs, there are still many cyber-security issues that shouldn’t be overlooked. Thankfully, Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac has shown an outstanding performance. AV-TEST, an independent organisation that evaluates and rates antivirus software, determined that Kaspersky for Mac detected 100% of malware samples and not one false positive.
Kaspersky for Mobile
If you want to stay protected on mobile, the Kaspersky mobile antivirus offers a total internet security application for Android. iOS users are unfortunately limited to basic features, password manager, parental control, and VPN. The Android app offers a broader range of features, including:
- Call blocker
- Antivirus scanner
- Theft protection
- Real-time protection
- Browser protection
- Smishing protection
- App lock
The iOS Security Cloud offers:
- Account check – looks for data breaches in your email
- Adaptive security – adapts settings based on user activity, like enabling VPN when connecting to a public network
- Security live – repairs weaknesses in the operating system
Plans and Pricing
The company currently offers three paid packages, as well as several free and paid additional tools. Don’t fret; all of the amazing Kaspersky software features come at reasonable prices. Take a look at the Kaspersky cost for the three main packages:
|Package||Kaspersky Anti-Virus||Kaspersky Internet Security||Kaspersky Total Security|
|Kaspersky price||$64.95 for 5 PCs, 1 year||$64.95 for 5 Devices, 1 year||$74.95 for 5 Devices, 1 year|
|Adult Content Blocker||✔||✔|
|GPS Child Locator||✔|
In case you don’t want to buy Kaspersky right away, you can try the 30-day Kaspersky trial to get familiar with its outstanding features. ESET Security also offers a free trial month and slightly lower prices starting at $39.99. If you want more basic protection without all the advanced features, the Kaspersky Security Cloud free download is available on their website.
Similar to Kaspersky, McAfee offers plenty of useful features to keep you safe, although its ultimate plan is way more expensive than Kaspersky’s Total Security, coming at $159.99 per year.
While the Kaspersky AntiVirus free software doesn’t offer the same premium features as its paid packages, it still provides excellent protection against viruses, Trojan horses, worms, malware, ransomware, and many other hidden threats. For Kaspersky renewal in Australia, open your program and select ‘Renew’.
Note: The company occasionally offers various discounts on their packages, but since these are subject to change, visit the official website to learn more about the current deals.
Its great customer support takes the blame for part of the amazing Kaspersky rating. Similar to Norton, Kaspersky offers several different support options:
- User Guides
- Knowledge Base
- Recovery Tools
- Community Forum
- Remote assistance
Technical support is available 24/7 in English, although it might be a little tough to find your way around with several forms that need to be filled out before you actually get to live chat support. However, once you reach them, Kaspersky’s support agents are very competent and friendly while resolving your issue.
Note: While email support is free and takes 24 hours to answer, remote assistance is reserved for premium customers only.
Is Kaspersky AntiVirus for You?
Our Kaspersky Antivirus review covered three different suites to fit every user’s needs. If you’re looking for essential antivirus protection, go for Kaspersky AntiVirus.
For more thorough internet protection, Kaspersky Total Security packs a wide range of features, including parental controls and a password manager.
You can always switch to Kaspersky Internet Security if you find some of the most advanced suite’s tools unnecessary.
1. Is Kaspersky antivirus free?
As explained in our Kaspersky Antivirus review, its more advanced programs aren’t free. However, the Kaspersky Security Cloud free antivirus provides decent protection by defending your PC and mobile devices against computer viruses and malicious threats.
2. Is Kaspersky bad for gaming?
On the contrary, Kaspersky exceeds expectations for good gaming antivirus software. It offers a great malware scanner, internet security protection, and an automatic game mode. The gaming mode adjusts to full-screen and pauses notifications and scans to reduce the load on your RAM.
3. Does Kaspersky affect performance?
It’s quite normal for an antivirus to take a slight toll on a computer’s performance. Kaspersky has a relatively small influence, slowing a computer down by only 12% post-installation. During a full scan, Kaspersky can slow down performance by 26% and 22% when performing a quick scan, as measured in a custom benchmark test.
4. Does Kaspersky remove malware?
Kaspersky excels at removing malware. Our Kaspersky AntiVirus Review shows that Kaspersky software has a 100% malware detection rate, and if your OS has been infected, the program will remove it and notify you.