Bitdefender and Malwarebytes are two very different antivirus options. Bitdefender is a full-featured internet security suite with perfect malware detection rates, while Malwarebytes is a simplistic, minimalistic antivirus that is best suited to beginners and non-techy users.
Bitdefender vs. Malwarebytes: Final Verdict:
Bitdefender vs. Malwarebytes: Malware Protection
Bitdefender’s cloud-based anti-malware engine is one of the best on the market. It uses a combination of machine learning and a huge malware directory to detect all kinds of malware. And because most scanning happens in the cloud, it’s very lightweight, meaning there’s no impact on your device’s performance during the scans.
I downloaded hundreds of malware samples onto my computer in order to test Bitdefender, including viruses, trojans, ransomware, and cryptojackers. The full disk scan only took 1 hour, and it caught every single piece of malware.
Bitdefender’s real-time protection is also excellent. It caught 100% of the malware in my tests, blocking every dangerous file before it had the chance to download. Bitdefender also allows for a lot of customization with its real-time protection, which will be appreciated by advanced users.
Malwarebytes has a good anti-malware engine that is able to detect and block the vast majority of malware on both Windows and Mac devices. It uses a malware database combined with heuristic analysis to detect threats, and it offers a range of scan options as well as real-time protection.
During my tests, Malwarebytes’s scanner found 95% of the malware samples I hid on my device, and its real-time protection blocked 98% of the malware files I tried to download. This isn’t as good as top competitors like Norton and Bitdefender, but it’s a good industry average.
Malwarebytes’s scanner did take over 3 hours to scan my entire disk though, which is longer than many other antiviruses. And it doesn’t have a default full disk scan option, so you have to choose this manually in a custom scan.
Bitdefender vs. Malwarebytes: Web Security
Bitdefender provides exceptional protection against phishing scams and a wide range of other web-based threats. It cross-checks every website you visit against a huge database of known dangerous sites and automatically blocks access to any matches — and in my tests, it successfully blocked 100% of the dangerous sites I tried to access.
It also provides a handy pop-up when a site is blocked, listing the site and the reason, and allows you to easily whitelist a site if you’re 100% sure of a false positive.
Malwarebytes offers good web protection via its browser extension, Browser Guard. The extension works with Chrome, Edge, and Firefox, and it protects against phishing, trackers, pop-up ads, and PUPs (potentially unwanted programs). This extension is also available completely free.
In my tests, it successfully blocked 90% of the known phishing sites I tried to access, which is pretty good. However, the ad blocker wasn’t as effective, only blocking around 35% of ads on the various sites I visited.
Bitdefender vs. Malwarebytes: Features
Bitdefender’s various plans cover between 1 and 10 devices and include the following features:
- Advanced malware detection and real-time protection.
- Web protection.
- Secure browser.
- VPN (limited to 200 MB/day/device on most plans).
- Parental controls.
- Wi-Fi network protection.
- System optimization tools.
- File shredder.
- Password manager.
- 30-day money-back guarantee.
- And much more…
Bitdefender has an excellent variety of additional tools and features, which all work very well. The parental controls are some of the best around, with a wide range of useful features — most of which are highly customizable. The file shredder and secure browser are also really nice additions.
Bitdefender’s VPN is on a par with many standalone VPNs, and on the top-tier Premium Security plan, it comes with unlimited data, making that plan an extremely good-value option for anyone looking for both a quality antivirus and a VPN.
The password manager is okay but a little too basic in my opinion, especially as it’s only included free on the top-tier plan.
Malwarebytes covers up to 5 devices across Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, and it includes:
- Malware scanning.
- Real-time protection.
- Web and anti-phishing protection.
- VPN (premium plan only).
- 60-day money-back guarantee.
Malwarebytes’s features are all pretty good, and the malware scanner and web protections are both available on its free plan. However, it has far fewer features than most top competitors — missing things such as a firewall, dark web monitoring, parental controls, and system optimization tools — and the real-time protection is good but not perfect. So its paid plans aren’t as good a value as many other antiviruses.
Malwarebytes’s VPN has good privacy protections and decent speeds, but it’s not able to access streaming sites or support torrenting, and it doesn’t have a kill switch, so it’s not really worth the extra cost.
Bitdefender vs. Malwarebytes: Ease of Use
Bitdefender is well designed, easy to use, and intuitive. All features are easy to find and access on its desktop app, with large buttons and a simple and intuitive categorization. There are also a lot of customization options for the various features, as well as the dashboard itself, and everything is easy to find and use.
The mobile apps are also good. The Android app in particular is really feature-rich and has an attractive and intuitive interface. The iOS app is surprisingly limited though, with just 3 features: web protection, breach monitoring, and a VPN.
Malwarebytes is a really intuitive and easy-to-use antivirus. It’s clean, simple, uncluttered, and very easy to navigate. As there are so few features, it takes no time at all to set up. You simply download the software and you’re away.
Malwarebytes’s mobile apps are also pretty good, although as is often the case, the Android app has a lot more functionality than the iOS app. However, they both have clean, easy-to-use interfaces and are decent options for beginners or less tech-savvy users in particular.
Bitdefender vs. Malwarebytes: Customer Support
Bitdefender’s customer support is very good. It offers email support, live chat, phone support, a detailed knowledge database, and community support.
The live chat and phone support are both excellent. They’re available 24/7 in English, and during local working hours in a wide variety of other languages. There are also a large number of local phone numbers available, as well as more general “worldwide” and “European” phonelines.
My experience with Bitdefender’s support was always very good. I was connected quickly and received friendly and helpful responses every time. The community forum isn’t very active, but given how good the other support options all are, this doesn’t really matter.
Malwarebytes has okay customer support. It offers a good knowledge base, a chat bot, and email support. However, there is no live chat available with a real person, and there’s also no phone support.
The chat bot essentially works as a search function for the knowledge base, providing you with links to relevant articles. These articles are very informative and cover a wide range of issues in detail. However, if you need more help, email is your only option — and when I tested the email support, it usually took around 24 hours to receive a reply. This is a shame given there are no other more-instant support options available.