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Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2016 Review

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PROS / Kaspersky Anti-Virus earned top marks in our installation testing.

CONS / Support is available by email, telephone and online chat for only 18 hours every day.

VERDICT / Kaspersky Anti-Virus is among the very best antivirus software choices for Windows.

Kaspersky Anti-Virus outshines so many of its competitors that it wins our Top Ten Reviews Silver Award for best virus protection. Its ability to seek out and destroy malware – whether the malware is known or freshly hatched – is remarkable. Although it is the entry-level Kaspersky security product, it includes more features than some others in its product category. For example, some of Kaspersky’s competitors lack antiphishing and automatic detection of removable media.

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  1. Windows 7 Protection test results from AV-Test, August 2015
    Higher is Better.
  2. 2 Kaspersky Anti-Virus
    92%
  3. 100%
  4. 100%
  5. Category Average
    95.00%

Performance

Performance is comprised of three measurable attributes: protection against infections; the product’s influence on computer speed; and usability, which measures the accuracy with which a virus scanner labels a threat. In these three areas, there are few antivirus products that exceed Kaspersky’s performance, according to results from Windows 7 tests conducted by AV-Test in July and August of 2015.

AV-Test protection testing subjected Kaspersky to widespread and prevalent malware discovered during the four weeks prior to testing. Kaspersky detected the majority of the samples. The protection tests also exposed Kaspersky to zero-day malware, which it identified with 98.2-percent accuracy, matching the industry average. As soon as any PC in Kaspersky's user network encounters such a threat, Kaspersky Lab records it in a list to help keep its users safe.

The performance portion of the test suite measured average influence on system performance. Although the industry average was a three-second slowdown on computer speed during web surfing, file downloading, copying data, and installing and running programs, AV-Test found that Kaspersky had no influence on computer speed. The software updates itself automatically with small updates that don’t bog your computer down.

The third part of the testing, usability, tracked whether products gave false warnings about safe websites or files. Kaspersky produced no false warnings, compared with an average of three such warnings for the other 20 top antivirus products in the test.

In testing at Top Ten Reviews, we found that Kaspersky required two mouse clicks from the home screen to start a full scan and three clicks to start a quick scan. This is average for the antivirus software in our reviews; however, one-click quick scanning is found on a few products. Kaspersky earned an A grade in our resource-use scans, which confirmed AV-Test's results that Kaspersky has no effect on computer speed during full scans.

Features

The most important feature of Kaspersky Anti-Virus, or any antivirus software, is the ability to detect, prevent and remove viruses. Few competing virus protection software products do better. Kaspersky also goes beyond viruses to protect from all malware, including spyware, rootkits, security exploits and ransomware. The program protects against malware, safeguards against identity theft and phishing, and secures online financial transactions, all in real time.

Ransomware can lock your screen and usually accuses you of having illegal pornography on your computer. The scam tells you where to send money so you can continue to access your files. Along these lines, Kaspersky Anti-Virus can make backup copies of files before malicious software has the chance to encrypt them, so even if ransomware attacks, you can restore the files held hostage without sending money to the bad guys.

Kaspersky can also defeat keyloggers that monitor the physical keys on your keyboard to capture logins, passwords and credit card numbers. The software's virtual keyboard lets you enter information onscreen to bypass the physical keyboard and prevent keylogging. Kaspersky also provides antiphishing protection, which warns you about the safety of sites in online searches and blocks access to malicious sites. One license protects three Windows PCs for one year.

Help & Support

Licensed users of Kaspersky Anti-Virus receive standard support for errors involving installation, configuration and product functionality. Premium support is available at an additional cost for extra assistance with networking, product installation, virus and spyware removal, and PC tuneup. You can also create system reports in advance to help a support technician diagnose your problem, so you spend less time on the phone or in online chat. If it’s not an emergency, you can submit a support case using a web form using Kaspersky’s self-service portal. You can also telephone or live chat to speak with technical support every day of the week, a service available 18 hours per day.

Kaspersky earned the top position in our installation tests by installing and uninstalling faster than the other antivirus products we tested because all required files come in the installer download. The software only requires a restart during uninstallation. It's unfortunate that Kaspersky doesn’t offer 24/7 support like other antivirus software in our reviews to give it a perfect support score. That said, the level of support that Kaspersky offers is well above the industry norm.

Summary

Kaspersky maintains an exceptional level of protection, performance and usability. The software's numerous features help you keep your computer running with its private data safe from harm. Unless you require 24/7 telephone or online chat access to technical support, there are few better antivirus applications for your PC in terms of threat prevention, impact on system resources and usability.

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