Avast Antivirus Review 2024 — Will It Keep Your Devices Safe?

Our Score
8.0
GOOD
Ranked 16th out of 74 antiviruses
Ranked 16th out of 74 antiviruses
Updated on: May 23, 2024
Fact Checked by Kate Davidson
Raven Wu
Raven Wu
Published on: May 23, 2024

Avast Review: Quick Expert Summary

Avast provides all the essential protections users need to stay safe from malware and cybersecurity threats of all kinds, including ransomware, spyware, adware, trojans, viruses, worms, rootkits, and more. It also has a decent free plan and is a very beginner-friendly antivirus.

Avast’s malware scanner and real-time protection performed well in my tests, detecting all of the malware samples that I put on my device. Its web protections are very good as well, performing significantly better than the default protections of Chrome, Firefox, and Edge.

The premium plans Avast offers have a wide range of extras, including:

  • VPN (virtual private network).
  • System optimization tools.
  • Webcam and microphone protection.
  • Advanced anti-tracking protection.
  • Identity theft insurance (up to $2 million).
  • Remote Access Shield.
  • Dark web monitoring.
  • And more…

Avast’s data breach monitoring is pretty good, but it could be improved. For example, it would be great if you could add additional types of information (like gamer tags) or monitor more than 1 driver’s license or physical address. Top antiviruses like Norton let you do all of that and more on the best plans. And while Norton and other top brands include password managers and built-in parental controls, Avast doesn’t offer either of these features. Its VPN is pretty mediocre too — it has a very limited feature set, and its server coverage isn’t great.

Overall though, Avast is still one of the better antivirus software programs. It provides excellent malware protection, is super easy to use, and has lots of extra features. All of its plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can try it out risk-free.

🏅Overall Rank #16 out of 74 antiviruses
🔥 Firewall
🌐 VPN
(Avast One only)
🎁 Free Plan
💵 Pricing $2.46 / month
💰 Money-Back Guarantee 30 days
💻 Operating Systems Windows, Android, Mac, iOS

RISK-FREE FOR 30-DAYS — TRY AVAST NOW

Avast Antivirus Full Review

Avast Antivirus Full Review

Avast offers two distinct security apps: the Avast Premium Security app (which I will refer to as the Avast classic app going forward) and the Avast One app. The classic app is highly customizable and the Avast One app has more features and is easier to use (but it’s only available in a limited set of countries). Though the features, settings, and user interface vary between the two apps, the fundamental anti-malware engine is the same across both.

All of Avast’s plans are tied to one of these 2 apps. Premium Security gets you the classic app, while the Avast One plans (there are 3 of them) come with the Avast One app. There are free products for each app, too. I’ll go into more detail about Avast’s plans and apps later down the line.

Both apps are easy to use, provide great security, and come bundled with lots of extra features. The anti-malware engine scored a 100% malware detection rate in both apps during my tests. Avast also provides strong web protection, a firewall, breach alerts, a secure browser, advanced anti-tracking protection, and a set of decent system optimization tools.

The free plans, Avast Free Antivirus and One Basic, include the core security features you need to protect your devices. However, by upgrading to Premium Security or one of the premium One plans, you get access to a lot more features.

There’s a 30-day money-back guarantee on all of Avast’s plans. You can also take advantage of the 30-day free trial of Premium Security (no card required!). It’s just a shame there’s no free trial for Avast One.

Save up to 70% on Avast!
Discount applied automatically at checkout.

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Anti-Malware Engine

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast’s malware scanner is among the best for detecting and removing malware. Despite having different user interfaces, both of Avast’s apps use the same scanner. I tested its efficacy by downloading 1,000+ malware samples onto my device, including viruses, worms, trojans, keyloggers, rootkits, ransomware, spyware, and more, and both apps scored a perfect detection rate. This is a comparable score to other top antiviruses like Norton, Bitdefender, and McAfee.

The full system scans took just under an hour on both apps, too. This is a pretty good speed — on par with Bitdefender and McAfee, but slower than Norton (which takes approximately 40 minutes). The difference is largely negligible though, as I noticed no significant performance drops during the scan and could use my PC as normal throughout.

Avast Antivirus Security Features

I like the large number of scan options Avast provides. This allows you to target specific areas where you suspect there might be a problem in order to save time. Avast includes the following scans on both apps:

  • Smart Scan. Scans areas on your device where malware is usually found.
  • Full Virus Scan. Scans your entire system for malware (called Deep Scan in the Avast One app).
  • Targeted Scan. Scans specific folders or drives (including external drives).
  • Boot-Time Scan. Scans files before your operating system is fully loaded.
  • Explorer Scan. Scans specific files or folders direct from your desktop (just right click on the file you want to scan and choose the option to scan with Avast).
  • Custom Scan. Create your own scans to suit your needs.

Whether you use Avast One or the classic app, the real-time protection is very good. When I turned it on and attempted to download the malware samples I had previously used for testing, it prevented all of the downloads. It was also able to catch the samples when they were zipped and encrypted.

That said, if you use one of Avast’s free products or your subscription doesn’t include the optimization tools, Avast’s malware scanner constantly tries to upsell you, which I found quite annoying. After every scan, it notified me that my PC was getting slower and attempted to get me to try out or purchase Avast Cleanup Premium to “resolve the issue.”

Overall though, Avast’s anti-malware engine is excellent. It’s pretty fast, has a low impact on performance, and can detect and remove all kinds of malware.

Web Protection

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast’s anti-phishing protections are pretty great. Both apps detected and blocked almost all of the fake websites I attempted to visit, and I ran into very few false positives. They’re significantly better than the default protections available on Chrome, Firefox, and Edge, and outperformed other top antiviruses Kaspersky and Panda, too.

Additionally, Avast’s Web Shield protects you from web-based threats by preventing unsafe downloads, scanning encrypted websites, and blocking web attacks executed through botnets and malicious scripts. Both of Avast’s apps include the same fundamental web protection tools, but One is far less customizable.

In addition to the features loaded into the apps, there’s also a free browser extension that detects phishing sites and other threats. It blocks trackers, opts you out of ads where possible, and points you to pages where you can manage your settings on Google and social media sites to better promote your privacy. You can also make it so pop-ups asking you to enable necessary cookies are automatically accepted and turn on a feature that color codes search results based on potential risk.

There are some things that I don’t like about Avast’s web protections, however. I had some trouble figuring out how to add incorrectly flagged websites to a list of exceptions on the classic app and finally had to use the search function in the settings. (One’s interface makes this a lot more intuitive). Competitors such as Bitdefender allow you to whitelist a site very easily with a single click. While minor, I also disliked how, on repeated visits to a phishing site, Avast no longer shows you a notification and simply prevents the page from loading.

Overall though, Avast’s web protection is great and will keep you safe from a wide range of web-based threats, including phishing sites, virus-infected websites and attachments, botnets, malicious scripts, and more.

Secure Browser

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast Secure Browser is another useful tool for staying safe online. It blocked about 2/3rds of ads in my tests, which is pretty good (but not the best). It blocks trackers and doesn’t keep any logs of your activity. For even more privacy, you can take advantage of the fact that it’s integrated with Avast’s VPN (though you can only use it if your Avast plan includes the VPN). The browser also prevents you from visiting unencrypted websites.

Bank Mode is another great advanced feature. It opens the browser in a virtual desktop, an isolated ecosystem that’s ideal for entering personal details like passwords and credit card details.

There’s a lot to like about the browser, but it isn’t my favorite. Like most secure browsers, it only supports a very limited set of extensions. You can download any extension from the Chrome store, but you’ll need to change the settings and click through a few warning boxes to do so. Unlike Bitdefender’s Safepay browser, it doesn’t block screenshots (which is great protection while you’re banking online). It also doesn’t grade search results with color-coded safety ratings. This is a pretty basic feature that’s flawlessly implemented into Norton’s Private Browser.

Overall, Avast’s secure browser is pretty good — but there are better competitors out there. I wouldn’t recommend it on its own, but as an extra feature in Avast’s already large feature-set, it’s a pretty neat inclusion.

Firewall

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast’s apps come with a firewall that monitors all network interactions, protecting you against unauthorized intrusions with minimal input. It worked really well in my tests, successfully blocking untrustworthy connections and sample exploit attacks. Both apps use the same fundamental firewall technology, but the presentation is different. I’ll start with the classic app before addressing Avast One’s firewall and getting into features shared across both apps.

Whenever the the classic app’s firewall detects a new application trying to connect to the internet, it responds to it in one of 4 ways (depending on your settings):

  • Smart Mode: Decides whether to allow the application to connect to the internet based on its reputation score.
  • Allow: Automatically allows the application to connect to the internet.
  • Block: Blocks the application.
  • Ask: Issues a notification asking you whether you should allow the application to connect to the internet.

I loved this freedom of choice; however, most users will just want to leave the firewall on Smart Mode — the default setting. I found having the firewall on Allow is risky, but Block and Ask mode quickly get annoying. Honestly, you should only change these settings if you have an active malware threat you’re trying to remove, but advanced users will appreciate having them available.

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Beyond the 4 modes, the firewall has a wealth of other customization options. It provides rich details for advanced users who want to change the parameters under which it works. It’s also easy to create your own rules for apps and networks. Most users won’t need to play with any of these settings, but I like that they’re there.

Moving on, Avast One’s firewall is much simpler. Rather than providing you with 4 options, it always operates in the equivalent of Smart Mode. It provides details about any actions it takes, but there aren’t any meaningful customization options beyond the ability to block or allow specific apps.

Customization differences aside, both versions of the firewall are similar in terms of security features. They both provide leak protection, which is particularly useful on public networks. It prevents your sensitive information, like usernames and emails, from being exposed. This is an especially great bonus feature when you consider competitors like PC Matic don’t even include a firewall.

In addition, you get Port Scan Alerts and ARP Spoofing Alerts on both apps. The former alerts you when there are attempts to scan your PC’s open ports, while the latter warns you about potential ARP spoofing attacks, a technique hackers use to intercept network traffic and steal private data. The firewall (especially the classic version) really stands out compared to competitors like Webroot which lack ARP spoofing protection and have virtually no customization options.

On the whole, Avast’s firewalls provide reliable protection against various threats. Its proactive features aim to prevent unauthorized access, and the user interface makes it relatively straightforward to manage your protections.

Device Optimization Tools

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast’s system optimization tools are pretty good — they’re super intuitive to use and can free up a lot of space and improve your computer’s performance. The tools are integrated into the One app. However, if you prefer the classic version of Avast, you can download a separate app in order to use most of them (I’ll be using the One app for my tests).

Avast’s optimization tools include:

  • Junk cleaner.
  • PC Speedup.
  • Driver updater.
  • Software updater.
  • Do Not Disturb mode.
  • Browser cleaner.
  • PC Speedup.

The junk cleaner finds and removes unused files and folders from your browsers, disks, and registry. During my tests, it found over 1.2 GB of files I wanted to remove. I also like that it gives you a clear breakdown of all of the files it’s flagged as junk and even provides a brief explanation of what each category of files is used for when you hover over them.

Avast Antivirus Security Features

PC Speedup finds unnecessary background apps that are using up system resources and puts them to sleep. This can, in theory, improve your device’s performance, but I didn’t notice much of a difference myself. I found Norton’s Real-Time Boost and game booster features to be much more effective at speeding up my device for CPU-intensive programs or games.

The driver and software updater scans for and notifies you of new updates for your drivers and the apps on your computer. Outdated drivers and software can create security vulnerabilities, and keeping track of updates can be a hassle, so this is a pretty convenient feature.

Overall, I like Avast’s device optimization tools. They’re available as a standalone purchase, but it’s much better value to get them bundled with one of Avast’s antiviruses. That said, they’re not as good as the device optimization tools of other antiviruses — Norton, for example, will give you a better performance boost for gaming. And TotalAV includes a lot more features, such as the ability to easily manage your startup programs, uninstall applications, and remove duplicate files.

Hack Alerts

All of Avast’s premium plans come with useful data breach alerts (called Hack Alerts). You can add up to 5 email addresses to your account (or 30 on the family plans) and Avast will let you know if any emails associated with them have been involved in data breaches. It worked well in my tests, pointing me towards several accounts of mine that have been involved in data breaches. In each instance, Avast gave me pretty clear instructions on what I needed to do to resolve the issue (it usually involved changing my passwords).

Avast Antivirus Security Features

However the Hack Alert feature could certainly be improved. For one, there are free tools that do the exact same thing. Unlike many other premium antiviruses, Avast won’t check to see if your physical address, gamertags, birthdate, or other bits of personal information have been leaked. Norton’s Privacy Monitoring feature checks for all this and more, providing useful information about what you should do while alerting you to the leak.

Identity Theft Protections (Separate Purchase)

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast provides strong identity theft protections. But, in most cases, these are only available as a standalone purchase and restricted to customers in the US. If you do opt for Avast’s Secure Identity service, you’ll get access to powerful tools that you can use to monitor several aspects of your life, including your finances, social media, and personal details.

Avast will actively monitor your credit cards, bank accounts, physical address, name, email, social security number, and more. If any of these are involved in a leak or posted on the dark web, Avast will notify you and provide advice. It’s a decent feature, but Norton can monitor a wider range of personal details (and they use live human agents, which is a big plus).

In addition to scouring the dark web and known breaches for your personal information, Avast provides:

  • Identity theft insurance up to $2 million.
  • Credit monitoring.
  • Social media monitoring.
  • Financial transaction monitoring.
  • Lost wallet assistance.
  • 100 MB secure cloud storage.

All of these features worked well in my tests. I particularly like the transaction monitoring, which alerts users to suspicious financial activity in their bank accounts. I’m less positive about the social media monitoring, as it seems a bit intrusive to me. If enabled, Avast will constantly snoop on your social media use, looking for signs that you’ve been hacked or are violating the platform’s policies.

The plan also gives users a secure password storage tool, but it’s frankly terrible. It’s called a “password manager” but I would never describe it as such. It’s a web-based tool for storing passwords, but it has nothing in the way of extra features. It lacks an auto-save/auto-fill function, a password sharing tool, and pretty much everything else that true password managers include.

Overall, I have mixed feelings about Avast’s identity protections. American customers can get access to strong defenses against identity theft (including a payout of up to $2 million if identity theft does occur), but you barely get anything on all other plans. Other top antiviruses like Norton and McAfee have better identity theft protections on their best plans while also providing useful features for subscribers to cheaper plans.

Rescue Disk (Classic App Only)

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast’s Rescue Disk is an incredibly useful feature. It allows you to put your antivirus onto a DVD or a USB drive, creating a “bootable antivirus program”, which is able to scan a hard drive for viruses without the need to start up your computer. This is a powerful second line of defense against malware that damages your system files to the point that your device no longer functions properly and you can’t run Avast normally.

The whole process of creating a Rescue Disk is quick and pain-free. And should you ever need it, Avast’s website has a detailed guide complete with pictures showing you how to utilize it properly to restore an infected PC.

Overall, I’m a big fan of Avast’s Rescue Disk. It’s a huge shame that it’s not available on the One plans, but it’s great that it’s included on the Free Antivirus plan. Other top antiviruses that offer this feature include Kaspersky and Panda.

Avast VPN (Avast One App Only)

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Avast also offers a VPN. It has good speeds, a kill switch, and a large network but it lacks features like desktop split-tunneling and torrenting support. It’s decent, but far from great.

I was disappointed when I tried to torrent a file while connected to Avast. I tried servers in several different countries but none allowed me to participate in P2P downloading. This pales in comparison to Private Internet Access, which allows torrenting on all servers and even comes with port forwarding to increase P2P speeds.

When it comes to streaming, Avast works with Amazon Prime and Paramount+. However, it has mixed success working with Netflix. If you’re looking for a VPN that can access Netflix 100% of the time, I recommend ExpressVPN.

Avast Antivirus Security Features

Negatives aside, Avast’s VPN has good speeds. I didn’t even notice it was on while browsing the web normally. High-demand activities like watching HD videos were only slightly affected, with a short delay before the videos would play. The server network is also pretty good. You can connect to 35+ countries and there are 12 different locations in the US alone, so you can find the server that works best for you.

Avast uses strong encryption and operates under a no-logs privacy, both of which are great for privacy. That said, Avast has been fined for selling user data in the past. I would very much like it if the company (and the VPN specifically) were audited to affirm that no logs are kept.

In short, while it isn’t the best antivirus-bundled VPN, Avast’s VPN is a nice addition to the One app. Avast also has a standalone VPN app which has the same features (and issues) as the one included in the One app.

Additional Features

Avast has a lot more features besides the ones I highlighted above. Here are some of its other notable features:

  • Mail shield. Scans incoming and outgoing emails for viruses and malicious links but may conflict with Microsoft Exchange on a server OS.
  • Tracker Prevention. Helps maintain your privacy, protecting you from advanced tracking techniques by constantly changing your browser’s fingerprint.
  • Sandbox (Classic App Only) Lets you run apps and open suspicious files in a secure, isolated environment.
  • Data Shredder. Overwrites sensitive files before deleting them so that they can’t be recovered.
  • Webcam Shield. Stops third parties from accessing your webcam without your consent, protecting you from webcam spyware.
  • Password Protection. Blocks apps from accessing any browser-based password managers you’re using (not a fully fledged password manager).

All of these tools have their uses, but it’s a shame that Avast doesn’t include a password manager on any of its plans. At the end of the day, none of Avast’s extras stand out from similar features you get with other premium antiviruses.

Avast Antivirus Plans & Pricing

Depending on where you live, Avast will have a different set of plans on offer. In total, there are 3 plans that use the Avast One app: Basic (the free plan), Silver, and Gold. Avast One is only available in the US, the UK, Ireland, Canada, Australia, France, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. The 2 plans using the classic app are Free Antivirus and Premium Security. Generally speaking, the One plans have a cleaner app and offer better value considering the inclusion of extra tools, while the plans using the older app have more advanced features and possibilities for customization.

In some regards, Avast has a very flexible subscription model, though it doesn’t give you much choice when it comes to how many devices you want to protect. The Premium Security plan lets you protect 1 or 10 devices while One subscriptions have Individual and Family versions (the license count varies by specific plan). On the other hand, One lets customers on a budget choose exactly which features they want by providing 3 different Silver plans (6 when you take the Family versions into account).

All 3 Silver plans come with standard features like the anti-malware engine and firewall, but beyond that, you can choose which extra feature you want. There’s the Privacy module, which adds the VPN, breach alerts, and some anti-tracker tools, but also Performance (adds optimization tools), and Device Protection, which gets you a handful of miscellaneous tools like webcam protection and anti-ransomware features.

Here’s a quick overview of all of Avast’s plans:

Avast Free Antivirus (Classic app) Avast Premium Security (Classic app) Avast One Basic Avast One Silver Avast One Gold
Platforms Windows, Mac, Android, iOS Windows, Mac, Android, iOS Windows, Mac, Android, iOS Windows, Mac, Android, iOS Windows, Mac, Android, iOS
Price Free $29.99 / year Free $35.88 / year $83.88 / year
Number of device licenses 1 1 or 10 1 3 or 30 5 or 30
Malware scanning & removal
Real-time protection
Ransomware protection
Web protection
Wi-Fi protection
VPN (unlimited data)
(Limited to 5 GB a week)

(Only with Privacy module)
Advanced firewall
Optimization tools
(Software updater and Do Not Disturb mode only)

(No software updater)

(Only with Peformance module)
Data breach monitoring
(Only with Privacy module)
Webcam & microphone protection
(Only with Device Protection module)
Tracking prevention
(Only with Privacy module)
Disk cleaner
(Only with Peformance module
Identity theft assistance
$2 million in ID theft insurance
Credit monitoring
USB protection
Rescue Disk
Password manager

Avast Free Antivirus — Basic Free Plan

Avast Free Antivirus is one of the few truly free antiviruses on the market. It includes the following features:

  • Malware scanner.
  • Basic firewall.
  • Real-time protection.
  • Network scanner.
  • Data breach monitoring.
  • Rescue Disk.
  • Do Not Disturb Mode.
  • Ransomware protection.

The free plan is really good. It provides a lot more features than Bitdefender’s free version, including the very handy Rescue Disk feature. However, unlike Avira’s free plan, it doesn’t come with a VPN.

Upgrading to one of Avast’s premium plans gets you a bunch of additional security features and performance-enhancing tools. These include anti-phishing protection, an advanced firewall, webcam protection, and more.

Avast Premium Security — Best-Value Avast Plan

Premium Security is Avast’s best-value plan and the one I recommend for most users. It costs just $29.99 / year and includes all of the features in Avast Free Antivirus plus:

  • Anti-phishing protections.
  • Advanced firewall.
  • Webcam protection.
  • Password protection.
  • Remote Access Shield.
  • Sandbox.
  • Data Shredder.

Premium Security offers far more customization options than the Avast One plans. That said, it’s missing the VPN and most of the optimization tools. It might be a good choice for technical users, but on the whole, I think the One plans (particularly One Gold) offer much more value for your money.

Avast One Basic — Alternative Free Plan

Avast One Basic is Avast’s other free antivirus. It’s very similar to Avast Free Antivirus, but it has a few new features:

  • Privacy Advisor. Helps you tweak your account settings on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Reddit, etc. to maximize your privacy.
  • PC Speedup. Optimizes your device’s performance by freezing background apps.
  • VPN. Encrypts your IP address to protect you online. Limited to 5 GB / week and you can’t choose your server (it automatically connects to the nearest one).

Avast One Basic loses some features compared to Avast Free Antivirus though, namely, Rescue Disk and Do Not Disturb Mode.

Avast One Silver — Premium Plan with Extra Utilities

Avast One Silver is a highly modal plan and a big step up from the One Basic plan. It costs $35.88 / year and there are 3 different versions: Performance, Privacy, and Device Security. On top of everything included with the Basic plan, the Performance adds optimization tools like an automatic program updater, a disc cleaner, and a driver updater. Privacy gets you the VPN, breach alerts, and a tracker blocker. Device Security comes with webcam protection, email scam blocker, and more. You can also choose between the Individual plan (3 licenses) or the Family version (30 licenses).

Avast One Gold — Security Plus VPN and Optimization

The One Gold plan combines all 3 Silver modules, so you get great malware protections with a VPN, solid optimization tools, and an array of other features for as little as $83.88 / year. It also has Family and Individual plans, but the license count for the latter is bumped up to 5. In my opinion, Gold is Avast’s best value Avast One plan.

Avast Antivirus Ease of Use & Setup

Downloading and installing Avast is a breeze. Still, I question the wisdom of providing 2 apps with basically the same security features. I would much prefer to see the customization options of the classic app incorporated into the One app’s intuitive design. As things are, I can’t help but feel many users visiting the website will be confused (at least those who haven’t read this review).

Still, Avast is very easy to set up. Whether you opt for Avast One or Avast’s classic app, the website automatically detects your operating system and ensures that you’re downloading the correct app. The whole downloading and installation process took me less than 5 minutes.

How to Install Avast (Just 3 Easy Steps):


  • Step 1: Choose an Avast plan. Consider whether you want to use the One app or Avast’s classic offering. You can buy Premium Security right away or take advantage of the 30-day free trial (no card required).
  • Step 2: Download and install the Avast app of your choosing. The installer should download immediately after making your purchase or confirming your free trial. Once it’s done, click on the .exe file.
  • Step 3: Open Avast. Find the shortcut for Avast on your desktop and double-click on it. If you’re using the classic app, you can choose exactly which features you want to install by doing a custom installation. I think this is really cool. In any case, once the installation is complete you’ll need to restart your device. That done, you’re now ready to run a system scan and use Avast’s features!

Avast (Classic App)

Avast Antivirus Ease of Use & Setup

The classic Avast app comes with the Free Antivirus and Premium Security plans. It’s the more complicated of Avast’s programs, but that doesn’t mean it’s hard to use. Unlike McAfee, for example, which spreads its features across multiple menus and apps, Avast does a good job of packing all of its features into a single app. After extensive tests, I can say that it provides a good mix of customization and accessibility. Here’s the layout from a bird’s-eye perspective:

  • In the Protection tab, you can run virus scans, enable and disable various real-time protections, quarantine or check on quarantined files, scan your network, change your firewall settings, enable or disable email protections, launch Avast Secure Browser, approve or reject remote access attempts, enable or disable DNS hijacking protection, run apps in the sandbox, and more.
  • In the Privacy tab, you can check for data breaches, enable or disable password protection for your various browsers, enable or disable webcam protections, scan for sensitive files on your computer that need protection, and shred any files that you want to delete permanently.
  • In the Performance tab, you can activate or deactivate Do Not Disturb Mode and check for software updates on installed apps.
  • In the More apps tab, you can find links to download and purchase additional features like the VPN and advanced optimization tools. Depending on which plan you have, you may already have access to these apps.

Avast Antivirus Ease of Use & Setup

The app provides brief explanations attached to all of its basic features, so you’re never left wondering what something does. I’m also a huge fan of how each individual tool’s page includes a shortcut (the little gear icon in the top right) that takes you directly to the advanced settings for it. Finally, if you still can’t find the setting you’re looking for, Avast offers a convenient search function that will take you directly to it and even highlights it in green so you can’t miss it. A lot of antiviruses lack this basic feature, which is a shame.

That said, it’s a shame that the app doesn’t include the VPN as well as many of the optimization tools. Depending on your subscription, you may be entitled to these features, so it’s a shame you need to download additional apps to use them.

Avast One

Avast Antivirus Ease of Use & Setup

Avast One is much simpler and more straightforward than the classic app. To contrast with the older app’s dark theme, it features universally bright colors. The home tab provides access to all features, including the VPN, scanner, and various optimization tools. The scanner button will only provide a quick link to the most recent type of scan you’ve run. So if you want to, say, run Deep Scan after a Smart Scan, you’ll need to first go to the Scan Center via the Explore tab.

This simplicity is ideal for non-technical users, but there are some consequences. Namely, the Explore tab is just a long list of features. You can click on any entry to read a brief description of what a given tool does. The text doesn’t go into much depth, but I think it’s a great way for less tech-savvy customers to explore their antivirus. You can go further by clicking an Open button, which in most cases will lead to a page where you can adjust the given feature’s settings. In almost every case, there are just one or two different settings options. There is also a general settings page which can be found under the Account tab, but it’s mostly just a way to manage updates and apps and folders to the scanner’s exceptions list.

Avast Antivirus Ease of Use & Setup

I like the One app. It’s very intuitive and I never had any trouble finding or using any features. You can’t fiddle with settings to the extent that you can with the classic app, however. Though it’s missing the search function, I still recommend it for non-technical users looking for an antivirus that provides easy access to features.

Avast Antivirus Mobile App

Avast Antivirus Mobile App

Avast has mobile apps for Android and iOS. The situation is the same as what you see with the desktop version: there are 2 apps, one for Avast One subscribers and another bundled with the plans that use the classic app. The Android apps have a lot more features than the iOS app, but this is pretty normal and is the result of Apple’s restrictions. In any case, iOS apps are well-secured from traditional malware, so a malware scanner isn’t really necessary.

Here are the protections that Avast offers for mobile users:

  • Malware scanner (Android only).
  • Web Shield.
  • App lock (Android only).
  • Anti-theft protections (Android only, unavailable on Avast One).
  • Wi-Fi speed test (Android only, unavailable on Avast One).
  • Network inspector.
  • Data breach monitoring.
  • Photo Vault.
  • VPN (Avast One only).
  • App Insights.

My favorite tools are the Photo Vault and App Insights. With Photo Vault, you can move images from your phone’s gallery to a secure storage area locked behind a PIN. They become inaccessible except through the Avast app, so it’s a great way to store sensitive photos. App Insights provides a list of all the apps stored on your phone, organized by category of which permissions they have. Norton has a similar tool (which is frankly better organized), but many mobile antiviruses have nothing of the sort.

Avast Antivirus Mobile App

Both mobile apps have an intuitive interface. Some of its tools can be found on its main screen and others can be easily accessed from the menu in the top left corner. Given how similar the two apps are, I struggle to understand why Avast chooses to support both.

Avast’s mobile security tools are very good. It was able to detect all of the malicious apps on my device during my tests. Additionally, its Web Shield correctly identified and blocked every phishing website I tried to visit.

Overall, Avast’s mobile app provides strong security, but it’s not quite as feature-rich as top competitors like Norton and Bitdefender.

Avast Antivirus Customer Support

Avast Antivirus Customer Support

Avast provides support via phone, live chat, and email, plus an extensive online knowledge base and a community forum. Though the latter isn’t very helpful, the knowledge base is fairly thorough and well-organized — capable of addressing most common inquiries with ease.

Avast Antivirus Customer Support

I had to click through heaps of pages to access Avast’s other support options, which was annoying. I also didn’t like how, if you tell the website that you need help with a free Avast product, you’re directed to search the online knowledge base or go to the community forum. You are given a phone number, but when I called and told them I didn’t have a subscription and didn’t want to pay for premium support, they told me they couldn’t help.

On that note, I’m not a fan of companies offering premium tech support as an add-on. I understand that it’s hard to justify spending tons of resources on people who are using your product for free, but I don’t like it when paying customers are asked to pay more for better support. It’s especially bizarre given that, based on my experiences, premium subscribers get good support even when they don’t pay for premium tech support.

I had generally good experiences with Avast’s one-on-one support. I didn’t have to wait at all to talk to live support and the agent was able to answer questions both about technical aspects of the program and sales-oriented queries about which plans include which features. Though as my questions got more complex, I had to wait a long time in between responses. The story was similar when I contacted phone support (after providing proof that I was a paying customer).

Avast Antivirus Customer Support

Unfortunately, Avast doesn’t have equal support for all countries. I tried to access the support page from a variety of locations and found that live chat and phone support are only available from English-speaking countries. Customers in Japan and most European countries can access a contact form in their native languages to get access to email support, but if you’re in China, Turkey, and a number of other countries, you won’t find any support page whatsoever  — unless you happen to speak English.

When I contacted Avast via email, they were helpful and friendly. However, I had to wait almost a full day to receive a response (the website indicates it may take up to two business days). If you require immediate assistance, this might not be the best option.

I think the provider’s phone support is the most efficient support channel. Just keep in mind it’s not accessible in several regions and international call charges may apply.

Overall, I found Avast’s customer support to be just OK. Most of your questions can probably be answered by consulting the online knowledge base or by asking users on the community forum. But if you have a particularly thorny question or concern and live in one of the many regions where phone support isn’t available, you don’t have any good options.

Is Avast a Good Internet Security Suite for 2024?

Avast is a pretty good antivirus. Its powerful malware engine scored a perfect detection rate on a wide variety of malware in my testing — including new and advanced threats like ransomware, cryptojackers, and rootkits. Its web protection was also effective at preventing access to phishing sites, catching several that slipped past Chrome’s and Firefox’s default protections.

Avast also provides a ton of additional features. Notably, it includes a Rescue Disk, a secure browser for online banking and shopping, advanced anti-tracking protection, and anti-DNS-hijacking protection.

Avast is one of the most intuitive antiviruses as well. With the One app, you’ll find its interface easy to navigate with every feature just a couple of clicks away. In the classic app, every major feature has a brief description attached that explains its function. And its search function makes it super easy to find the settings that you’re looking for in the menu.

While Avast is a very good antivirus, it does have some issues. Many of its extra features compare unfavorably to those of other antiviruses at similar price points. For example, its VPN doesn’t have great speeds or a strict no-logs policy, and it lacks parental controls and a password manager. I also find the split between two apps a bit confusing and wish Avast simply provided one intuitive app no matter which antivirus plan I picked.

Overall, Avast is a solid internet security suite that provides high-quality protection for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS devices. It has great free plans too. You can try Avast’s paid plans risk-free by taking advantage of its 30-day money-back guarantee.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Avast a trusted antivirus?

Yes. Avast is a trustworthy antivirus in 2024. It’s true that Avast was involved in a scandal in 2019 where it was found to be selling user data gathered improperly through the Avast Online Security browser extension, but the company has since undergone significant changes. Not only has it shut down the subsidiary company, Jumpshot, which was responsible for the harvesting and selling of user data; but it has also been certified by data privacy advisors like TrustArc.

Is Avast completely free?

Yes — Avast has two 100% free apps that you can choose between called Avast Free Antivirus and Avast One Basic. Each version has slightly different features, but both provide all of the essential security features necessary to protect your devices from all kinds of malware including ransomware, spyware, adware, trojans, worms, viruses, and more.

If you use one of Avast’s free versions, however, you won’t have access to its many bonus features. By upgrading to a premium plan like Avast Premium Security or Avast One, you’ll be able to protect up to 30 devices and gain access to PC clean-up and optimization tools, a VPN, an advanced tracker blocker, and more. All paid plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can test them out risk-free. There’s also a 30-day free trial available for Avast Premium Security (no credit card required).

Will Avast slow down my computer?

Avast shouldn’t have any major impact on your device’s performance. In fact, Avast can actually improve your device’s performance by detecting and removing bloatware or malware that are taking up your system’s resources. Additional features provided by Avast such as PC clean-up and PC optimization can also make your device run faster by freeing up space, freezing unnecessary background processes, and helping you keep your software and drivers up to date.

Bitdefender is a good alternative antivirus if you’re worried about system slowdowns. It’s the most lightweight antivirus in 2024, and its cloud-based scanner ensures that your device will run smoothly even during full disk scans.

Is Avast a Russian company?

No, Avast is a Czech company headquartered in Prague, Czech Republic. And in 2021, it merged with Norton LifeLock, an American cybersecurity company that also owns Norton 360. It’s a safe antivirus that is used by over 400 million users worldwide.

Why can’t I uninstall Avast?

Many antiviruses, including Avast, have built-in protections against uninstallation. This is to prevent malware from turning off your antivirus. You need to disable this protection before you can uninstall Avast. To do so, all you need to do is follow these 3 simple steps. First, navigate to Avast’s settings. Second, go to the Troubleshooting tab. Third, uncheck the box that reads “Enable Self-Defense.” You can now uninstall Avast normally.

Avast Products & Pricing

Free Antivirus
$0.00 / year
Avast One
$32.99 / year
Avast One Silver
$35.88 / year
Bottom Line

Avast is one of the most user-friendly antiviruses in 2024. Its malware scanner scored a 100% detection rate, and its real-time protection and web protections are similarly excellent. It has great free plans, and its premium plans come with a lot of additional features including a secure browser, data breach monitoring, a VPN, system optimization tools, and much more. However, Avast’s VPN and data breach monitoring could use some improvement, and I’d like to see it include parental controls and a password manager. All of Avast’s plans are backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

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About the Author

About the Author

Raven Wu is a freelance writer, editor, and translator. He is a strong advocate of internet freedom and is very passionate about technology, and he’s honed his craft by researching and writing about a variety of other topics including education, literature, health, pop culture, and games. Outside of work, he's an amateur novelist and history enthusiast who enjoys hard games, spicy food, and thinking way too hard about everything.

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Avast User Reviews

*User reviews are not verified

180 169
Based on 349 reviews in 29 languages 5.6
Language
You can trust the Community! Companies can't ask us to delete or change user reviews.
Pleurat Asllani
Pleurat Asllani
Albania
2.0
BIG MISTAKE
Windows User
Its a scam and useless app. I would wish that its used as a weapon to irritate the enemy. I'd never accept any payments to install it again, big mistake
Gillian Hunter
Gillian Hunter
Australia
1.0
AVAST ARE SCAMMERS AND A DECEITFUL COMPANY
Windows User
AVAST are absolute scammers charging for upgrades not ordered and accessing bank account numbers that i have never and would never be used on line.
There advertising is aggressive and misleading and when you try to contact them is is impossible.
What hope have you got when the very people who claim to offer protection, are in fact the biggest scammers of them all.
very unhappy and much poorer in time and money
Jillian
Judith Anne Stopp
Judith Anne Stopp
Australia
1.0
Avast
Windows User
Since it came immediately after a Windows Upgrade...I thought it might be connected to a reputable source. They are very annoying in pop up scare tactics to get you deeper into trouble. I am going to disable Avast, even though I have paid a service for a year....but...they keep asking for more. My computer, since Avast, has had more problems than ever....Judi
user avatar
Judith Anne Stopp Judith Anne Stopp
Now that I have disabled Avast - thanks so much to the information here to be able to do that....I have no troubles and computer is faster....and as said here.....Windows are already reckoning the safety of the computer. Free. Thanks all. Judi
Christi
Christi
United States
1.0
Scam in scans
Windows User
Where do I start? After having Avast removed and having another spyware placed on the computer by a reputable computer company. Evidently Avast didn't appreciate that I dropped them, so here is what I think happened, per my computer guy, who said he sees this happen alot after someone drops Avast and says he's not sure how they do it but it keeps happening to other customers who had been on Avast. All of my passwords were hijacked and I ended up with over 500 bits of malware and viruses in a short period of time. About 6 months after the computer company removed Avast, I got a notice from them that they were going to deduct money from my credit card for a year's subscription. When I tried to contact someone about this, I was sent in circles...Show More
How To Uninstall Avast Antivirus?
Linux User
Uninstall Avast Antivirus using the Start menu
On your Windows 10 computer, right-click on the Windows Start button and choose the Apps and Features option from the drop-down menu.
In the left panel, click on Apps & Features and choose Avast Antivirus. Finally, click on the Uninstall button.
When the User Account Control dialog box appears, click on the Yes button.
On the Avast Free Antivirus Setup screen, click on the Uninstall button.
When the uninstall dialog box appears, click on the Yes button.
Once the uninstallation gets completed, click on the Restart computer button to reboot your computer.
Hope you find the solution for How To Uninstall Avast Antivirus.
Mark
Mark
Philippines
1.0
Do not avail AVAST Products!
Windows User
Avast has terrible customer service. I want a refund, and I've been reaching out to them multiple times, but I'm still not refunded. I recently reached out to them, and the support told me that I was already given a refund. What the hell?! I'm checking my bank account almost daily for a refund. Their services are full of false promises, and they only care about getting your money. Do not subscribe to their products.
Dwayne
Dwayne
Canada
1.0
avast failed me
Windows User
We purchased Avast at work thinking it was protecting the computer and then one morning using avast browser googling for a manual the browser locked up and it was telling me it was telling me to cal a phone #.
I was not happy because this avast was suppose to help me to block this stuff.
Don't buy this program! doesn't work!
David W
David W
Australia
2.0
Scurrilous
Windows User
When I signed up, I thought I was getting a reputable company selling a quality product.
As time when on, they kept sending me special offers for all sorts of add on protection. Everytime I bought an new 'essential' protection, I was told there was something else I needed cover for! Then as time went on I discovered that I had been double billed for some of the cover and found it very difficult to get in contact with them to sort it out. I would describe them as sharks. My son-in-law who is a computer geek tells me that Microsoft already provides most of the protection and that Avast just make a lot of noise.
I feel ripped off badly.
Lawrence Wise
Lawrence Wise
Australia
1.0
Mr Laurie Wise
Windows User
Would not recommend this company. Too many non reply emails . very hard to cancell subscriptions. Rip off merchants. I have tried to cancell and get the run around .Going to authorities
user avatar
jacob smith Lawrence Wise
yeah, my mom installed it on my pc and since then, my pc has been extrremely slow, and its brand new which makes me think it is avast, it somehow took my files and threw them onto the internet, which is absolutely insane.
user avatar
Ricardo jacob smith
I agree. Avast takes for itself at every moment a lot of computer resources [memory, CPU, disk channel, Internet conexión, etc.] doing who knows what, extremely slowing down the processes one really cares.
It make think that the antivirus has become worse than the virus...
user avatar
Judith Anne Stopp jacob smith
Yes, Jacob - I agree.
user avatar
Judith Anne Stopp jacob smith
Yes, since I have Avast - who are annoying, their pops are annoying....even though I paid for a $40 service...they still want more money.....apparently I have 27 or so driver problems...lol...they say.....and they want more money ...Show More
user avatar
Cathy Judith Anne Stopp
Ever since I paid for and installed Avast Premium/ with a vpn line....it has been a complete nuisance!!! I am constantly having to restart my computer because it will freeze up on me!! Talking to customer service was a nightmare (...Show More
user avatar
Anonymous Lawrence Wise
My computer worked perfectly fine until I downloaded Avast free antivirus software it started loading slow then I couldn't update my computer at all always showed 3 errors tried to uninstall never deleted out of my computer two da...Show More
Owen Jones
Owen Jones
United Kingdom
1.0
Premium Avast User
Windows User
I have been using the top product plus VPN for a year now, but my computer is terribly slow and the VPN is unreliable. I suspect Avast is to blame, but I would never use Norton or McAfee :-(
user avatar
Bob Owen Jones
I use Norton 360 one of the best anti virus software ever made never had any problems and tech support is there 24/7 case closed
user avatar
felly Owen Jones
why you don't want to use norton antivirus?
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