The most effective antivirus software will safeguard your against all kinds of cyber threats, such as ransomware, malware and phishing. It will also protect your data from spyware, spying, and phishing. It must also be compatible with your operating system, run on Windows, Mac and Android devices (and the ideal is Linux too), and have a low impact on performance. It should also come with additional security features, such as a secure browser and file shredder.

You should also ensure that the software is updated regularly its malware database as new threats are continually being created to overcome older detection methods. A lot of the top antivirus programs use different detection techniques such as heuristics and behavioral monitoring. They also use artificial intelligence, sandboxing, and sandboxing.

Free antivirus programs typically provide basic security that is adequate for the majority of users but if you want more advanced features, such as SMS and call blocking, cloud storage management and device scanning, you should consider paying for alternatives. These programs will use a subscription-based pricing model and should be backed by reliable lab test results and user reviews.

If you’re looking to find a top-rated mobile antivirus application, consider AVG Antivirus. It scored 100% in AVComparatives’ June 2023 tests, and includes a smart scanner as well as Wi-Fi network alerts. It also provides junk file cleanup and Wi-Fi network alerts. It also prevents unwanted calls and texts, allows you to find your phone that has gone missing using the GPS tracker, and comes with an anti-theft option that locks your device following three incorrect password attempts. The paid version includes extra security features like an inbuilt VPN and automatic app updates.