It’s crucial to understand the amount of computer resources your antivirus program will consume. The best programs are those that have only a minimal impact on system performance while providing superior security against malware and viruses.

Most antivirus software vendors publish comprehensive test programs in PDF format. The reports contain quick-to-read ratings of protection, performance and usability of each suite, as well as detailed graphs and charts illustrating the results of particular testing elements. Important figures to look for include the percent of real-world and reference set malware vulnerabilities that are blocked, neutralised or compromised by the program and the number of false positive detections by benign software.

In AV-Comparatives’ tests in June 2023, Avast Free Antivirus for Mac was the most successful in achieving the highest percentage of pass rates in blocking Mac malware and PUAs (potentially unwanted programs) and the second-highest score for Windows virus detection. It also scored highly in the categories of full-scan, passive and quick-scan.

When compared to paid programs, Bitdefender Total Security had the tiniest post-installation background system impact being followed by Kaspersky Total Security and ESET Security Cloud Free. It was the slowest in both full-scans as well a quick-scan. The program’s relatively light background impact could be due to the fact that the program doesn’t run by default on Windows 10 and 11, as most of its rivals do.

Intego was the one with the lowest system impact background and full scans however, it was able to find every bit of malware. It’s rare to find a company which solely focuses on Macs. This makes it an excellent tool for any security arsenal.