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Our toughest ever antivirus software test reveals new Best Buys Read more:

Protect your PC or Mac from the worst nasties the internet can throw at it with simple, effective antivirus software

Cyber threats now regularly hit the headlines. Hackers and virus-writers aren’t bored teenagers in hoodies – they’re organised groups able to cripple NHS computers and even allegedly sway presidential elections. With more than one billion Windows PCs running today, it’s perhaps unsurprising that volumes of malware worldwide have more than tripled over the past five years. Despite such digital doom and gloom, there’s no need to panic about your home computer. All you need to do to protect your PC or Mac is install a Best Buy antivirus package. It will run in the background, zapping nasties without you even knowing. Plus, with some great free packages available, all that protections could cost you nothing.

A global security problem, a global solution

As cyber security is a global problem, we need to think globally for the best solution. We’ve joined forces with other consumer organisations around the world – including in the US and across Europe – to create the most rigorous antivirus test we’ve ever conducted. When we say tough, we mean it. Each package is bombarded with more than 10,000 samples of malware. We test how well they work while your computer is online, and offline, too. As the world of cyber threats never sleeps, testing only once a year isn’t good enough. We’ll fire new malware at the programs every three months to ensure their standards haven’t slipped, and update our reviews accordingly.

In search of the internet’s worst nasties

Unlike most computer users, we’re constantly searching for the world’s worst computer bugs. To test antivirus programs, we need plenty of the internet’s most destructive nasties, whether that may be viruses, ransomware or fraudulent phishing messages. Our specialist lab operates what are called ‘honeypots’ – think of these as digital fishing nets designed to capture thousands of strains of murky malware, viruses and other online undesirables. We have more than 60 honeypots around the world, capturing and storing up to 400,000 files every day.

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