10 Best Internet Security Suites in 2024: Total Protection

Katarina Glamoslija
Katarina Glamoslija Lead Cybersecurity Editor
Updated on: May 26, 2024
Fact Checked by Kate Davidson
Katarina Glamoslija Katarina Glamoslija
Updated on: May 26, 2024 Lead Cybersecurity Editor

Short on time? Here’s the best internet security software in 2024:

  • 🥇 Norton : Excellent internet security suite that offers complete protection against all malware and cyber threats. Comes with web protection, a firewall, a VPN, a password manager, parental controls, and a lot more. All plans are covered by a generous 60-day money-back guarantee, so you have plenty of time to try it out risk-free.

A good internet security suite is a wise investment. It can protect all of your devices against malware and online threats with several tools, including a virus scanner, anti-phishing protection, a firewall, a password manager, a VPN, parental controls, and more.

Most internet security software includes an antivirus engine, alongside other cybersecurity protections like:

  • Anti-phishing — for blocking dangerous websites from stealing your data.
  • Anti-spyware — for protecting your private data from leaking on the web.
  • Anti-ransomware — for stopping ransomware from locking up your device.
  • Firewall — for monitoring and blocking unwanted and suspicious network traffic.
  • Password manager — for creating and storing strong passwords.
  • VPN (virtual private network) — for browsing the web and streaming anonymously.
  • Parental controls — for restricting your children’s access to unsuitable content.

I tested the top internet security suites to find the very best out there. In doing this, I found that cybersecurity packages differ greatly in the quality of protection offered, the usefulness of their extra features, and the overall value they provide.

But after several weeks of testing, I was able to narrow down my list to the top 10. These are the security packages with the best security, the best features, and the best value — my top choice, Norton 360, offers the most comprehensive protection overall.

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Quick summary of the best internet security software in 2024:

🥇1. Norton 360 Deluxe — Best Internet Security Suite in 2024

Approved by our experts
Norton
Approved by our experts
Most readers pick Norton
Malware detection rate
100%
Key Features
AI-based scanner & VPN
Number of devices
Up to 10
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
60 Days
norton.com

Norton 360 Deluxe has one of the best antivirus engines on the market — combining known malware databases with artificial intelligence and machine learning, it scored 100% detection rates in all of my tests. It’s also my favorite choice for complete protection on all operating systems.

Norton also includes a wide range of easy-to-use internet security features, such as:

  • Firewall — blocks dangerous incoming and outgoing internet traffic.
  • Safe Web — browser extension to protect against phishing sites.
  • VPN (unlimited data) — offers secure connections in over 30 countries.
  • Password manager — generates and stores complex passwords.
  • Parental controls — helps you keep your kids safe online and manage their screen time.
  • Secure browser — keeps you safe while browsing.
  • PC SafeCam — makes sure no one can access your PC’s webcam.
  • Dark web monitoring — notifies you the moment your private data ends up on the dark web.
  • Cloud backup — lets you store up to 50 GB of data. Windows only.
  • Safe Email — flags potentially threatening emails in your inbox. Note that this is an add-on feature with an extra subscription cost.
  • And lots more…

🥇1. Norton 360 Deluxe — Best Internet Security Suite in 2024

Norton’s web protection is excellent. The Safe Web browser extension was able to block every known phishing site I tried to access in my tests — far more than Chrome or Firefox could recognize. I love how Norton gives you a full report on why it blocked a site as well, including reviews from fellow Norton users who’ve tried accessing that page.

Norton also offers a secure browser which integrates all Norton’s security extensions, meaning you don’t need to add each of them separately. I like the convenience of this approach, and while I wasn’t impressed with the Extension Guard, which blocked almost all the extensions I tried to add, I did like Privacy Guard and Web Shield, which work to block ads and malicious sites. Overall, the Secure Browser is a good choice for those who want an all-in-one web protection solution, and it’s totally free, too.

I particularly like Norton’s dark web monitoring, too, which scans dark web forums, credit reports, and breach databases for data leaks. While many other antiviruses also monitor data breach databases, Norton uses human agents to find information other vendors aren’t able to.

🥇1. Norton 360 Deluxe — Best Internet Security Suite in 2024

In addition, US-based customers can take advantage of Norton’s identity theft protection. Features offered in its Lifelock package include credit report monitoring, live identity recovery assistance, credit freezing, home title, court record, 401k, social security, and ID monitoring, and more. LifeLock even offers up to 1 million dollars in insurance payouts and legal assistance for victims of identity theft.

Norton’s VPN is also excellent for an antivirus-bundled VPN — it has military-grade 256-bit AES encryption, fast connection speeds, full leak protection, and useful extra features like split-tunneling. However, it’s lacking in several areas compared to top-tier standalone VPNs like ExpressVPN and Private Internet Access. For example, it only allows torrenting on dedicated servers, it doesn’t consistently work with major streaming sites, and it lacks a strict no-logs policy.

🥇1. Norton 360 Deluxe — Best Internet Security Suite in 2024

Norton 360 Deluxe is Norton’s best-value package — at only $49.99 / year*, it covers 5 devices (across all operating systems) and comes with 50 GB cloud storage. It’s also ranked as the #1 best antivirus with parental controls (but note that parental controls aren’t available on Mac).

Overall, Norton 360 is a well-rounded internet security suite ideal for both individuals and families with several devices to protect. You don’t have to be an expert to use its additional features, and you can feel at ease knowing your system is completely protected from all online threats.

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Bottom Line:

Norton 360 Deluxe is a top-tier internet security suite, offering excellent protection at a great price. Norton’s antivirus engine is one of the most powerful on the market — scoring 100% detection in all of my tests — and it comes with an impressive set of online security features. Since 360 Deluxe includes coverage for up to 5 licenses, it’s a perfect choice for individuals or families looking to protect multiple devices. Plus, there’s a generous 60-day money-back guarantee on all Norton packages.

Read the full Norton review here >

🥈2. Bitdefender Premium Security — Best for Comprehensive Internet Security

Malware detection rate
100%
Key Features
Cloud-based scanner
Number of devices
Up to 10
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
bitdefender.com

Bitdefender Premium Security is one of the most comprehensive internet security packages out there, with more useful features than most competitors. Its anti-malware engine is very advanced — using a sophisticated cloud-based scanner, it scored 100% detection rates in all of my tests without slowing down my computer. I was really impressed with Bitdefender’s lightweight scanning — even top competitors like McAfee cause a little slowdown during full system scans.

Bitdefender Premium Security also offers:

  • Multi-layered ransomware protection.
  • Safepay secure browser.
  • Anti-phishing protection.
  • Password manager.
  • VPN (unlimited data).
  • Parental controls.
  • Anti-theft protection.
  • And more…

🥈2. Bitdefender Premium Security — Best for Comprehensive Internet Security

I really like that Bitdefender offers multi-layered protection against ransomware. In addition to recognizing and blocking ransomware (it successfully prevented all of my ransomware simulations from running during testing), it prevents all unauthorized access to personal files and starts securely backing them up if it detects any suspicious behavior.

I visited dozens of fake websites to test out Bitdefender’s web protection and was very impressed by its detection rate — none of the fake or malware-infected websites I tried to access managed to get past Bitdefender’s anti-phishing filters. This is a big step up compared to the default anti-phishing protections available on Chrome, Firefox, and other internet security competitors.

🥈2. Bitdefender Premium Security — Best for Comprehensive Internet Security

The Safepay secure browser offers excellent protection for your financial transactions — it can stop hackers from remotely accessing your computer, it blocks screenshots, and it offers a virtual keyboard. It also automatically turns on VPN protection. What’s more, while there is a little delay when you load sites in Safepay, they load faster than they do with Kaspersky’s Safe Money browser.

Bitdefender also comes with a OneClick Optimizer that helps you remove duplicate, temporary, and junk files from your computer, potentially clearing out a ton of space from your hard drives and improving your computer’s performance. When I ran it on my computer, it freed up over 1 GB of space. As advertised, it was also very easy to use.

That said, there are other internet security suites with more advanced optimization tools than Bitdefender, including TotalAV. On the other hand, Bitdefender is one of the rare antiviruses with a vulnerability assessment tool, which checks your PC for any outdated or vulnerable software and tells you what the best fix is.

🥈2. Bitdefender Premium Security — Best for Comprehensive Internet Security

The password manager, VPN, and parental controls are very good, too. During my tests, the password manager accurately auto-filled logins and forms, and the VPN provided me with encrypted access to multiple servers around the world. The mobile versions also support double-hop connections for added security. The parental controls allowed me to limit device usage, filter content, monitor apps, and even set up location tracking.

Bitdefender’s Premium Security offers superior protection and lots of high-performance internet security tools for up to 10 devices. Plus, at $79.99 / year, it’s cheaper than many products with similar features, making it one of the top deals on the market. Bitdefender also has one of the best free antiviruses for Mac and Windows.

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Bottom Line:

Bitdefender Premium Security is one of the most advanced cybersecurity packages you can get. The cloud-based antivirus scanner is excellent, and the full-suite package includes a ton of top-quality internet security tools — like a password manager, parental controls, and a VPN. Bitdefender is backed up by a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Bitdefender review here >

🥉3. TotalAV Total Security — Best Internet Security for Beginners

Malware detection rate
99.60%
Key Features
Beginner-friendly apps
Number of devices
Up to 8
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
totalav.com

TotalAV Total Security is the most advanced online protection suite from TotalAV — but it’s still simple to understand and very easy to use. It has an excellent antivirus engine that detected over 99% of the malware in my tests, and it comes with lots of online security tools. These include a safe browsing extension, a secure password vault, anti-phishing protection, an ad blocker, and a VPN (with unlimited data).

TotalAV’s VPN is the best antivirus-bundled VPN out there, performing much better than many standalone VPNs. It compares favorably with Norton’s VPN as well, including many features that Norton lacks such as a strict no-logs policy, torrenting support on all servers, and the rare ability among antivirus-bundled VPNs to work with major streaming sites including Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and more.

🥉3. TotalAV Total Security — Best Internet Security for Beginners

The system tune-up tools are excellent, too. Whereas Bitdefender’s system tune-up tools are little more than a junk file remover, TotalAV’s include extra tools like a startup manager (lets you decide what apps you want to run automatically when your computer starts) and an application uninstaller (a much more thorough uninstaller compared to the built-in uninstaller on Windows and Mac, which also lets you uninstall multiple applications at once).

TotalAV’s Web Shield deserves a mention for its anti-phishing protection. This tool successfully identified a number of malicious sites that both Chrome and Firefox overlooked, adding an extra layer of security when browsing. Plus, you can get Web Shield as a free download. However, while it’s pretty effective, it doesn’t quite match up to Norton’s anti-phishing protection, which caught every phishing attempt in my tests.

🥉3. TotalAV Total Security — Best Internet Security for Beginners

There’s also a password manager, Total Password. It’s almost as good as Norton’s offering, making it one of the best antivirus-bundled password managers. It’ll generate strong passwords for you, store them, and automatically fill in saved passwords as you browse the web. It also comes with extras like security reports, two-factor authentication (2FA), and biometric logins, but lacks a secure password-sharing tool. Unfortunately, it’s only available as part of TotalAV’s most expensive bundle.

TotalAV Total Security is a good choice if you want a simple, beginner-friendly security suite that you can install and forget about (on up to 8 devices). It includes the password manager but doesn’t have as many additional features as Norton or Bitdefender, which come with extras such as webcam protection, file shredding, parental controls, and encrypted storage, but at $49.00 / year, it’s one of the best-value deals around.

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Bottom Line:

TotalAV Total Security offers easy-to-use antivirus protection and comes with some pretty good internet security tools. The antivirus engine is fast, lightweight, and highly secure, and the included VPN offers speeds comparable with some of the top names in the VPN industry. TotalAV is truly ‘plug and play’ — you’ll be protected within seconds, and it’ll run quietly in the background without you even noticing. There’s a 30-day money-back guarantee on all of TotalAV’s plans.

Read the full TotalAV review here >

4. McAfee Total Protection — Best for Wi-Fi Network Protection With Excellent Cybersecurity Extras

Malware detection rate
100%
Key Features
Great web protection
Number of devices
Unlimited
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
mcafee.com

McAfee Total Protection is a well-rounded internet security package — it has everything you need to build and maintain a strong online defense in 2024. For starters, McAfee’s real-time antivirus engine scored a perfect 100% detection rate against all of my test malware. What’s more, it offers some great extra features, including:

  • Firewall — protection against network threats.
  • Safe Web — browsing extension which blocks potentially dangerous websites.
  • VPN (unlimited data) — securely connects to 45+ countries.
  • File shredder — permanently deletes files.

The firewall is also pretty good — during my tests, none of the threats I set it up against were able to get through. It’s honestly pretty light in terms of customization and extra features, but it does a solid job when it comes to stopping network intrusion threats.

4. McAfee Total Protection — Best for Wi-Fi Network Protection With Excellent Cybersecurity Extras

McAfee’s VPN is also really good, maintaining fast browsing speeds even on distant servers. Its fast speeds make it pretty good for streaming too. I was able to watch several hours of Netflix in HD without a problem — though it doesn’t always work with Hulu or Disney+.

McAfee also comes with identity theft protection. This service includes credit monitoring, SSN tracing, and identity restoration insurance up to $1 million. Available in over 20 countries, it’s an excellent option for those outside the U.S., where Norton and TotalAV’s identity theft protection services aren’t accessible.

McAfee also offers parental controls via the Safe Family app. They’re pretty effective, but unlike Norton, McAfee doesn’t include the parental controls with any of its plans, so you have to pay extra.

4. McAfee Total Protection — Best for Wi-Fi Network Protection With Excellent Cybersecurity Extras

The one thing I don’t like about McAfee is its password manager. Total Protection only includes a limited version of True Key — not only is True Key not very good, but you also don’t even get the full version. If you’re looking for an internet security suite with a really good password manager, take a look at our top 5 antiviruses with a password manager.

With plans starting at $39.99 / year, McAfee is one of the most affordable options on this list. In fact, it’s cheap enough that even if you buy a separate password manager, it’s still one of the best value packages out there. Plus, it’s one of the only antiviruses on the market to offer coverage for an unlimited number of devices, making it a great choice for larger households.

Bottom Line:

McAfee Total Protection is an excellent antivirus package. It comes with additional tools like a VPN, a file shredder, and even identity theft protection in some countries. The Premium plan is one of the best value family antiviruses on the market, covering an unlimited number of devices for a low price. All McAfee plans are protected by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full McAfee review here >

5. Panda Dome Complete — Intuitive User Interface With Lots of Additional Security Protections

Malware detection rate
95%
Key Features
PC Rescue Kit & game mode
Number of devices
Unlimited
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
pandasecurity.com

Panda Dome Complete has a good malware scanner, an easy-to-use interface, and a ton of additional features. Panda uses artificial intelligence to protect devices from all types of malware — in my tests, Panda found most of my malware samples. However, it missed a few adware and spyware files that competitors like Norton were able to detect.

Panda’s most unique feature is the Rescue Kit, which lets you save your PC via a USB stick if it gets infected by a virus or malware. This is really useful, as it means you can boot your PC to scan and disinfect it in situations where it might otherwise be impossible to start. Kaspersky has something similar, but Panda’s Rescue Kit is a bit better.

5. Panda Dome Complete — Intuitive User Interface With Lots of Additional Security Protections

I also like Panda’s user-friendly password manager, which includes all of the essential features of a good password manager, including a password generator, the ability to auto-fill and auto-save passwords, two-factor authentication (2FA), password strength auditing, and more. Its file encrypter and shredder is also good, locking and permanently deleting sensitive files.

However, not all of Panda’s extras are that good. For instance, the web protection needs some improvement (it only scored a 50% detection rate during my tests, failing to detect even the most obvious phishing sites). This is very poor compared to top brands like Bitdefender and TotalAV, which have near-perfect detection rates. Also, I didn’t find the parental controls very useful because they’re just too basic. If you’re looking for strong parental controls, I recommend Norton.

Panda Dome offers several different plans. These range from a free plan with basic antivirus protection and a limited VPN to the Panda Dome Premium plan, which comes with a VPN with no limitations and costs $66.99 / year. However, I recommend most users get the best-value Panda Dome Complete plan ($42.99 / year), as Panda’s VPN has mediocre connection speeds, doesn’t work with most major streaming sites, and lacks critical features like a kill switch that help ensure your privacy and security.

Bottom Line:

Panda Dome Complete offers good malware protection and is one of the most feature-rich internet security suites on the market. It detected most malware, and I was impressed with its intuitive interface and unique features like the Rescue Kit. However, Panda’s web protection is pretty bad, the unlimited-data VPN is only available with the most expensive package, and the parental controls are too basic. If you’re interested, you can try Panda risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Panda review here >

6. Malwarebytes Premium — Simple Security With a Good Antivirus Engine

Malware detection rate
95%
Key Features
Secure browser extension
Number of devices
Up to 20
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
60 Days
malwarebytes.com

Malwarebytes Standard is an easy-to-use but minimal internet security suite. Malwarebytes’s antivirus engine uses artificial intelligence to block malware in real-time — during my tests, Malwarebytes detected around 95% of my malware samples, which is pretty good. However, I was pretty annoyed that it flagged more false positives than any of the other antiviruses on this list. Its full disk scan also took nearly four times as long as Norton’s.

Malwarebytes proved pretty effective at catching phishing websites, scoring a 90% detection rate, but it’s pretty bad at stopping ads. Malwarebytes claims that its extension speeds up web browsing, but I didn’t notice that my browsing was any faster than usual.

6. Malwarebytes Premium — Simple Security With a Good Antivirus Engine

Malwarebytes Standard doesn’t have any extras. It’s missing a device tune-up tool, a password manager, breach monitoring, parental controls, and even a firewall, which can all be found in premium competitors like Norton, McAfee, and Bitdefender. However, it’s a simple and affordable internet security suite that covers up to 20 devices across all operating systems and starts at just $59.99 / year.

Malwarebytes Plus adds a really good VPN with 500+ servers in 40+ countries for $79.99 / year. But while its VPN has decent speeds and a zero-logs policy, doesn’t support torrenting, and is unreliable for streaming, so it’s not really worth the upgrade. Malwarebytes does offer an Identity Theft Protection service too, but it kicks off at $99.99 / year. On the bright side, it includes the premium antivirus, Browser Guard, and the VPN.

Bottom Line:

Malwarebytes is a highly effective anti-malware program, but it lacks many additional features I want to see in an internet security suite. Malwarebytes Standard has a good antivirus engine and decent web protection, and Malwarebytes Plus adds a reasonable VPN. There’s also an Identity Theft Protection package available, but this comes at a higher price. The company offers a generous 60-day money-back guarantee on all plans.

Read the full Malwarebytes review here >

7. Avira Prime — Fast Virus Scans & Secure Browsing

Malware detection rate
100%
Key Features
Device optimization tools
Number of devices
Up to 5
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
60 Days
avira.com

Avira Prime has one of the best antivirus engines around — it runs entirely in the cloud, so it’s fast, lightweight, and doesn’t cause lags or system slowdown. During my tests, Avira’s antivirus engine identified all of the malware samples I placed on my computer, and the real-time protection feature blocked all of the malware files I tried running. However, Avira is one of the only security suites on this list that doesn’t come with its own firewall, which is a real shame.

I like Avira’s Safe Shopping browser extension — it identified and blocked more phishing sites in my tests than most competitors. The extension also blocks browser tracking, preventing companies from tracking your online activity and delivering ads based on your browsing habits. Another cool thing about this extension is that it helps you find the best deals online (though this doesn’t always work as intended).

7. Avira Prime — Fast Virus Scans & Secure BrowsingAvira comes with an excellent VPN as well — it’s secure, fast, and very easy to use. I was able to browse the web, watch videos, and download files with minimal or no speed loss, which is pretty great for a bundled VPN. It also supports torrenting on all of its servers, and it passed all of my IP leak tests. That said, one downside is that Avira’s VPN doesn’t work with the majority of popular streaming websites.

Unfortunately, the Prime package doesn’t include parental controls, so Norton and Bitdefender are better options if you have kids to protect. But Prime does include excellent system optimization tools, so if you’re keen to clean out your devices and get them running faster, Avira could be the security suite for you.

Priced at $59.99 / year, Avira Prime is the company’s best internet security suite, and it covers up to 25 devices across all operating systems (the mobile apps also come with really good anti-theft protection and a network scanner).

Bottom Line:

Avira has a lightweight cloud-based antivirus engine with perfect detection rates and excellent web protection. I’m particularly impressed with Avira’s Safe Shopping browser extension which prevents phishing attacks, blocks browser tracking and ads, and finds the best shopping deals. However, it doesn’t have a firewall (which is an essential security feature), and it also lacks parental controls. There’s a 60-day money-back guarantee on all Avira purchases.

Read the full Avira review here >

8. Kaspersky Premium — Best for Online Shoppers

Malware detection rate
100%
Key Features
Great parental controls
Number of devices
Up to 20
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
kaspersky.com

There is no evidence to suggest that using Kaspersky products will in any way threaten your privacy or security or that the company engages in any illicit or otherwise unethical behavior. You can find out more about why we continue to recommend Kaspersky here.

Kaspersky Premium has a good antivirus scanner and lots of extra internet security features. These include a VPN, parental controls, a password manager, webcam protections, a secure browser for online financial management, and a rescue disk feature similar to Panda’s Rescue Kit.

The Safe Money feature is particularly good. During my tests, it detected when I was making purchases, and it automatically opened a new browser that analyzed sites for security risks, blocked pop-ups and trackers, and gave me an onscreen keyboard to deter keylogging hackers.

8. Kaspersky Premium — Best for Online Shoppers

I also like Kaspersky’s Safe Kids parental controls. They allow you to set up safe searches on YouTube, manage your child’s screen time on Android (this feature didn’t work on iOS during testing), monitor their activity on VK, and block adult content. They even have a handy function in the location tracker that’ll warn you if the battery on your child’s device is low, so you can ensure that your kids are never out of contact due to a dead device.

Kaspersky’s password manager and VPN are also really good. The VPN offers unlimited data, decent speeds, and excellent streaming support. The password manager is fairly basic, but it offers unlimited password storage, flawless auto-save and auto-fill, and a good password generator. However, unlike Norton’s password manager, it lacks two-factor authentication options.

At $34.99 / year, Kaspersky’s Premium plan includes protection for up to 20 devices, which is pretty affordable for a full-featured internet security suite.

Bottom Line:

Kaspersky Premium has excellent malware detection and some pretty cool features for securing online finances. It also has comprehensive parental controls, a good password manager, and a solid VPN. All Kaspersky purchases come with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Kaspersky review here >

9. Intego Mac Premium Bundle X9 — Best Internet Security Software for Mac

Malware detection rate
100%
Key Features
Mac system cleaner
Number of devices
Up to 5
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
intego.com

Intego’s Premium Bundle X9 is the best Mac internet security suite out there. Most of the products on this list are primarily intended for Windows (although they all work well on Mac), so I decided to include one that focuses on protecting Macs.

Intego’s excellent real-time malware protection helped to make it our #1 antivirus for Mac in 2024. In my tests, it blocked all of the Mac-specific malware samples I threw at it — including newer spyware samples that macOS antiviruses from competitors like Panda missed.

Intego’s other features include:

  • Firewall.
  • Device optimization tool.
  • Parental controls.
  • File backup (local backup only).

I was very impressed by Intego’s NetBarrier firewall, which automatically adjusts settings based on network traffic. You can also choose to manually adjust your settings to allow or block incoming or outgoing internet and LAN connections. It’s highly customizable, easy to use, and overall it offers a great improvement on Apple’s built-in firewall.

9. Intego Mac Premium Bundle X9 — Best Internet Security Software for MacI also really like Intego’s parental controls. Besides the standard features you’d expect like content filters and the ability to set a screen time limit, Intego’s parental controls also allow you to monitor your child’s chats and emails to guard them against online predators and prevent them from communicating with others inappropriately — using malicious words and sharing personal or sensitive information, for example.

However, Intego is missing anti-phishing protection, which is a critical internet security feature. Its “anti-phishing protection” is just a feature that checks whether the built-in protections on Chrome, Firefox, and Safari are active — In other words, Intego doesn’t offer any additional protection of its own.

Intego’s Premium Bundle X9 ($34.99 / year) comes with all Intego’s features for up to 5 devices. But if you’re only looking for basic protection for your Mac device, then you can also take a look at Intego Mac Internet Security X9, which includes malware protection and a firewall for just $19.99 / year.

Bottom Line:

Intego Mac Premium Bundle X9 improves macOS’s internet security tools in every way — it has excellent malware scanning and a really good smart firewall. I also really like the parental controls and file backup, which both offer a ton of customization options that macOS doesn’t include. All of Intego’s plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Intego review here >

10. MacKeeper — Intuitive Internet Security for macOS Users

Malware detection rate
99%
Key Features
ID theft protection
Number of devices
Up to 3
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
mackeeper.com

MacKeeper is another good internet security plan for macOS, with near-perfect malware detection rates and a wide range of cybersecurity tools. Its malware scanner detected more than 99% of my malware samples, which is similar to Intego, and its additional features improve upon macOS’s built-in protections.

I especially like MacKeeper’s system cleanup and optimization tools, and I think its VPN is pretty good, too. The system cleanup and optimization tools removed almost 7 GB of junk files from my MacBook, and the VPN allowed me to stream content on Netflix without any slowdown.

MacKeeper is also very easy to use, so you won’t have to worry about setting it up or finding and using its features, even if you have little or no experience with internet security packages.

10. MacKeeper — Intuitive Internet Security for macOS Users

What’s more, MacKeeper has a live chat integrated into the dashboard, so you can contact customer support at any time. I chatted with MacKeeper’s live chat reps several times, and they were always friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable.

MacKeeper’s biggest downside is that it lacks anti-phishing protection. This is an essential internet security feature in 2024, and all of the other brands on this list have it (except for Intego). In addition, MacKeeper also lacks a firewall and parental controls (Intego has both of these features).

All of MacKeeper’s plans include the same features, and the only difference between them is the subscription duration and the number of devices covered (1-3). Plans start at $10.95 / month.

Bottom Line:

MacKeeper is a decent macOS internet security package with an excellent malware scanner and a good range of additional features. Its cleanup and optimization features can help clean your Mac of junk and duplicate files, and its VPN is one of the better antivirus-bundled VPNs. However, MacKeeper is missing essential features like anti-phishing protection and a firewall. There are several plans to choose from, and they all have a 14-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full MacKeeper review here >

Quick Comparison Table

Antivirus Starting Price Firewall Device optimization
VPN Password Manager
Parental Controls
Free Version Money-Back Guarantee
1.🥇Norton 360 Deluxe $49.99 / year* Unlimited data 60 days
2.🥈Bitdefender Premium Security $79.99 / year Unlimited data 30 days
3.🥉TotalAV Total Security $49.00 / year Unlimited data 30 days
4. McAfee Total Protection $39.99 / year Unlimited data (with automatic subscription renewals) 30 days
5. Panda Dome Complete $42.99 / year Unlimited data
(with Panda Dome Premium)
30 days
6. Malwarebytes Premium $59.99 / year Unlimited data (with Malwarebytes Plus) 60 days
7. Avira Prime $49.00 / year Unlimited data 60 days
8. Kaspersky Premium $67.49 / year Unlimited data 30 days
9. Intego Mac Bundle Premium X9 $34.99 / year 30 days
10. MacKeeper $10.95 / month Unlimited data 14 days

Testing Methodology: Comparison & Ranking Criteria

To find the best internet security suites, I relied on our testing methodology, which examines a variety of factors to produce a balanced score for each antivirus tested. These are some of the tests I performed:

  • I ensured the software included anti-phishing capabilities. In addition to scanning for and removing malware, good internet security software should have the ability to help detect and prevent you from accessing websites that try to obtain personal or sensitive information. Norton and Bitdefender in particular offer excellent web protection.Testing Methodology: Comparison & Ranking Criteria
  • I made sure each program I recommend is easy to use. The best internet security suites are easy to download, install, and navigate. It should also be simple to troubleshoot and customize each feature. In my tests, I gave bonus points to brands with helpful in-app instructions and exceptional customer support.
  • I looked for packages with a VPN (virtual private network). Almost all of the internet security suites on this list come with VPNs to protect your online privacy and personal information. Norton, Bitdefender, and TotalAV’s VPNs in particular performed as well as some standalone VPNs in particular performed as well as some standalone VPNs in terms of speed, security, access to streaming services, and inclusion of extra features like streaming and P2P support.
  • I looked for packages that offer password managers. Good internet security suites will include a password manager, which makes it easy for you to create and maintain a list of diverse and strong passwords. Norton and Avira’s password managers are among my favorites.
  • I made sure to include suites with parental controls. Many of the brands I recommend on this list come with really good parental controls that can help you keep your children safe both online and offline. Norton is my #1 pick for the best antivirus with parental controls in 2024.
  • I calculated the overall value. When choosing an internet security suite, you should look at how much the plans cost, how many devices they cover, and whether they offer free trials or a money-back guarantee. In my tests, I also took into account how many extra features were on offer and how much the standalone products included in a package cost.Testing Methodology: Comparison & Ranking Criteria

Basic Antivirus vs. Advanced Internet Security Suite

A basic antivirus primarily offers malware protection, functioning as an on-demand shield against viruses, worms, and other malicious software. It doesn’t often include real-time protection, so it’s only a good choice if you perform minimal online activities. If you’re on a budget and don’t mind missing out on some security features, a basic antivirus could be a suitable choice for you.

Advanced internet security suites, on the other hand, provide a multi-layered defense that can also protect against more sophisticated attacks like ransomware and phishing. These suites are equipped with a variety of tools, such as VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) to enhance online privacy, firewalls to monitor and control incoming and outgoing network traffic, and password managers to help generate and store complex passwords.

The added features in advanced security suites address a wider range of issues. For instance, they can protect against ransomware which encrypts files, and phishing schemes that trick users into divulging personal information. These advanced threats require more than just basic antivirus protection — they need a comprehensive antivirus to remove them.

Most antivirus products offer both basic antivirus plans and more advanced plans. The choice between the two depends on your individual needs. For example, if you engage in a lot of online activities that involve sensitive data like online shopping or banking, a full-featured security suite is a smarter move. Meanwhile, if you don’t use your computer often, you’ll probably only need a basic antivirus plan.

Basic Antivirus Advanced Internet Security Suite
Provides basic protection against viruses, worms, and trojans Provides advanced protection against a broad range of malware
Usually only includes a malware scanner Usually includes additional tools (VPN, password manager, firewall, parental controls)
More affordable More cost-effective
Suitable for basic users Suitable for users who engage in a lot of online activities

What Security Threats Can an Internet Security Suite Protect You Against?

An internet security suite is designed to protect against a wide range of cyber threats. In addition to viruses, trojans, and other common malware, it will protect you against:

  • Ransomware. Malicious software that encrypts your files and demands payment for their release. Internet security suites often include behavior-based detection systems to prevent ransomware attacks.
  • Phishing attacks. Fraudulent attempts to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.
  • Spyware. Software that secretly gathers your information through your internet connection without your knowledge — often for advertising purposes.
  • Rootkits. Malware that’s designed to gain unauthorized access to a computer. It’s normally able to hide the existence of certain processes or programs from normal methods of detection.
  • Adware. Unwanted software designed to issue advertisements on your screen, often in a web browser, and sometimes based on your browsing habits.
  • Zero-day attacks. Attacks that exploit previously unknown vulnerabilities in software or hardware, making them particularly difficult to guard against without regularly updated security software.
  • Botnets. Networks of private computers infected with malicious software and controlled as a group without the owners’ knowledge, e.g., to send spam messages or launch denial-of-service attacks.
  • DDoS attacks. Distributed Denial of Service attacks involve overwhelming a website or online service with traffic from multiple sources, making it unavailable to legitimate users.
  • Wi-Fi eavesdropping. Attackers intercept unsecured Wi-Fi communications to access personal information or inject malware onto a network.
  • Keyloggers. Spyware that records the keys struck on a keyboard, typically concealed so that the person using the keyboard is unaware that what they’re typing (including sensitive info like their passwords and credit card numbers) is being monitored.
  • Man-in-the-middle attacks. This occurs when an attacker secretly relays and possibly alters the communication between two parties who believe they are directly communicating with each other.

An internet security suite addresses these threats with a blend of technologies, which can include a virus scanner, firewall, intrusion detection systems, and more.

Is Kaspersky Safe to Use?

The recent war in Ukraine has brought Kaspersky under scrutiny due to its Russian origins. The German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) has advised German citizens against using Kaspersky antivirus. The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has also added Kaspersky to a list of companies deemed to pose a risk to national security — a move that reinforces the long-standing policy of US governmental agencies forbidding the usage of Kaspersky products.

There is no solid evidence indicating any weaknesses or misconduct on the part of Kaspersky. The firm has vehemently denied claims that its products could be exploited for cyberespionage or cyberattacks by the Russian government. It contends that these accusations were driven by politics and rooted in baseless apprehension.

With over 25 years in the industry, Kaspersky has a reputable global presence with operations in 200+ countries. Its security suites consistently perform well in technical evaluations, and Kaspersky has played a part in countering major cyber threats, including some potentially tied to the Russian government. This history underlines Kaspersky’s significance in the cybersecurity realm.

Considering all this, we don’t think Kaspersky’s antivirus will harm your online safety. But, if you’re still worried, there are lots of other antivirus choices, like Norton and Bitdefender.

Top Brands That Didn’t Make the Cut

  • Comodo. Comodo offers a variety of advanced settings for experienced users. But during my tests, Comodo missed some malware files that the brands on this list all detected. Plus, Comodo significantly slowed my computer down.
  • ESET. ESET is a lightweight internet security suite with pretty good malware protection. However, ESET is not as good at detecting internet-based malware like ransomware as the other programs on this list. It’s also pretty expensive, especially if you own multiple devices.
  • Sophos. Sophos is a good cybersecurity suite that includes protection for up to 10 Macs or PCs and unlimited mobile devices. However, it’s missing many of the additional features that make the antiviruses on this list so useful, plus its desktop app is disappointingly basic.
  • G Data. G Data offers a strong set of features like anti-ransomware and behavior monitoring. However, it falls short in a few key areas. During my tests, G Data had noticeably longer scan times compared to top-tier competitors. Additionally, its user interface isn’t as intuitive as those of the top-ranked competitors, resulting in a less user-friendly experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is internet security important?

Internet security is important because of the huge amount of valuable data most of us keep online and the increasing number of hackers targeting unprotected online accounts. Hackers are using increasingly sophisticated malware and social engineering tactics to get access to financial information, online logins, and browsing data.

Without proper internet security protection, you could fall victim to one of these hacks. Your financial details could be leaked, your social media accounts could be compromised, and ultimately you could become a victim of identity theft and fraud.

What’s the difference between “antivirus” and “internet security”?

Antivirus software protects against computer-based malware like viruses and trojans, while internet security software protects against network-based malware like spyware and ransomware. That said, today, many internet security suites (like all on this list) offer both an antivirus engine and internet security protection in the same product.

Many antivirus/internet security packages have:

  • Phishing, spyware, and ransomware protection.
  • Secure browser extension.
  • Identity theft insurance.
  • VPN.
  • Firewall.
  • Dark web monitoring.
  • Password manager.
  • Encrypted cloud storage.
  • And a lot more…

My favorite internet security suite of 2024 is Norton 360 Deluxe. It’s got 100% malware protection, a fast VPN, 50 GB of cloud storage, a highly secure firewall, and excellent parental controls.

Are there any free internet security programs?

Free internet security software usually has severely limited functionality, major product flaws, or notifications that prevent you from using your device normally. Alternatively, it might have a secret agenda, like stealing your data. That said, not all free security software is bad. In fact, I think there are some good free antiviruses out there — but none are as good as the brands on this list.

It’s always better to spend a couple of bucks a month on a premium internet security suite like Norton 360 than it is to deal with the hassles and limitations of a free antivirus.

Are Google Chrome’s internet security protections any good?

Chrome doesn’t have a lot of online protections. It’s missing a VPN, identity theft protection, and advanced phishing detection.

Internet security protections from Google (and Apple and Microsoft) have come a long way. However, none of them are even close to those offered by major cybersecurity brands like Norton. Most antivirus software in 2024 offers far better protection than anything found in Google Chrome.

What’s the best antivirus with internet security?

My favorite antivirus with internet security is Norton 360 Deluxe. It has perfect malware detection rates, plus a ton of great internet security features including a firewall, a VPN with unlimited data, a password manager, parental controls, dark web monitoring, cloud backup (Windows only), and more.

Is Windows Defender good enough?

Windows Defender offers a decent level of protection, but it’s no match for a comprehensive internet security suite. Although it provides basic antivirus and anti-malware functionality, it lacks several crucial features that suites offer, like VPNs, advanced firewalls, anti-phishing tools, and parental controls.

Overall, opting for a full-featured security suite like Norton 360 Deluxe will get you better protection against a wider range of threats.

Will an internet security suite slow down my PC?

No, it shouldn’t if it’s designed well. Modern security software is built to be efficient and lightweight, causing minimal impact on system performance. However, you may notice slight slowdowns during intensive tasks like full system scans.

If your PC is older or has limited resources, you might experience some performance decrease. To mitigate this, you can always consider scheduling scans for times when you’re not actively using your PC. Products like Norton make scan scheduling super easy.

What should I look for in an internet security suite?

You should look for an internet security suite that offers comprehensive protection and a range of tools that will be useful for you. The software should defend against a range of threats like viruses, malware, ransomware, phishing, and spyware, and the interface should be user-friendly and easy to navigate, even for beginners.

Reliable customer support is another consideration, ideally through multiple channels such as email, phone, or live chat. Finally, ensure the suite offers good value for money, delivering excellent protection at a reasonable cost. Top brands like Norton and Bitdefender offer all this and more.

Do I need both antivirus and internet security?

Antivirus and internet security software protect you against different things, so you need both to ensure complete protection. Antiviruses find and remove malware on your device and stop malware from being installed on your device in the first place. Internet security software protects you from online threats by identifying phishing sites (which try to steal your personal information), encrypting your data (with a VPN), stopping cyber attacks, and more.

Because they complement each other so well, many internet security suites include both. All of the recommendations on this list come with both an antivirus and internet security.

The best internet security suite in 2024 is Norton 360 Deluxe. It has 100% malware-detection rates and offers comprehensive protection from cyber threats with features like a firewall, a VPN, a password manager, dark web monitoring, cloud backup, and more.

Do I need tune-up tools?

Yes. If you want an automated method to maintain and potentially improve your system’s performance, tune-up tools are an easy way to declutter your system, optimize your registry, and manage startup programs without diving into complex settings. These tools can streamline routine maintenance and even extend the life of older hardware to some extent. That said, if you’re comfortable with manually managing your system you might find these tools unnecessary — but they certainly make the process easier.

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About the Author
Katarina Glamoslija
Katarina Glamoslija
Lead Cybersecurity Editor
Updated on: May 26, 2024

About the Author

Katarina Glamoslija is Lead Cybersecurity Editor at SafetyDetectives. She has more than a decade of experience researching, testing, and reviewing cybersecurity products and investigating best practices for online safety and data protection. Before joining SafetyDetectives, she led several tech websites, including one about antiviruses and another about VPNs. She also worked as a freelance writer and editor for tech, medical, and business publications. When she’s not a “Safety Detective”, she can be found traveling (and writing about it on her small travel blog), playing with her cats, and binge-watching crime dramas.