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ANTIVIRUS for Windows 11

BEST ANTIVIRUS for Windows 11 in 2023

I think we all know that using Windows Defender is a no-go. I mean, I've tested countless best antivirus for Windows 11 options, some more notable than others and these five did something special, whether it was affordable pricing, useful functions, or other unique features.

So I'd like to share those recommendations with you, including all of their pros and cons that you should know about.

all of these providers could be considered the best antivirus for Windows 10 in 2023 since they work fine on both Windows versions. But, if I had to pick one all-around option that's close to being the best of the best, well, that would be TotalAV for Windows 11.


It's the antivirus that quickly became my personal fave with excellent malware detection and feature-heavy plans. the main reason this is the best antivirus for Windows 10 or Windows 11 for that matter is that it has complete protection against a whole host of dangerous threats.

You get all the necessary things that a good antivirus has, real-time protection, ransomware detection, cloud scanning, anti-phishing protection, and a data breach scanner. It also has tons of tools to optimize your PC. So if you're like me and you have files all over the place, a duplicate file finder will be your savior for cleaning up.

One small problem here is that the basic plan for the antivirus lacks most of the features that I just mentioned. you're gonna have to go for a higher-priced plan to get the best version of TotalAV. For a cheaper, more inclusive package Bitdefender or Surfshark antivirus might be better.

and that's another thing that's missing a good cloud backup system. Not everyone needs one, but if you do, you might wanna keep that in mind.

we do a lot of our own independent testing, and this usually just involves downloading and infecting our test PC with 10 nasty malware files while testing out all the scanning options from each provider. When it comes to the results, finding at least seven out of 10 malicious files, well, we'd consider that a worth your money antivirus and Windows Defender's results. Zero malicious files. the default Windows antivirus is definitely not the way to go.

But looking at this TotalAV review for protection, it blows everyone out of the water and manages to easily find all 10 files with its system scan. the quick scan, as with all providers, doesn't find any malware because it's mostly used for more well-known, easily recognized threats.

TotalAV has been independently lab tested as well. AV-TEST awarded the service with a maximum of six points in performance and usability. It also showed that TotalAV successfully blocked 97% of zero-day malware attacks in 2022.

TotalAV does have a free version, and to be honest, this free plan is really good for basic Windows security. It comes with a malware scanner and anti-phishing protection but it does have a single-device limit. Of course, for better and more covered protection, you gotta go with the premium plans.

The Total Security plan will be the best bang for your buck since it includes a VPN, password manager, and ad blocker. But it was a bit more expensive. If you only need an antivirus, TotalAV plans become very affordable.


if you want something more flexible and affordable, Bitdefender for Windows might just be the right provider for you since it's not just an antivirus. Bitdefender packs in a password manager, a VPN, and a PC optimizer just to name a few of their features.

But one small really useful feature profile because these allow you to create different settings and switch them on the fly. So for example, I can set up my work profile to minimize all the scans and impact of Bitdefender on my PC while I'm working.

like with every provider on this list, quick scans are more suited for well-known malware and will only scan your device's main directories. So it didn't find any of the 10 malicious files. However, with the system scan, it found nine out of 10 threats, which is an amazing result. Every Bitdefender review from independent sources says the same thing. It's great.

It even won the AV-Comparatives Product of the Year award four times in total. That's more than any other antivirus program. Bitdefender also blocked 100% of threats when testing in April 2022. This includes all types of new and old threats, like zero-day or even four-week-old viruses.

while Bitdefender has a variety of tools and features, like most top antivirus providers, the VPN it offers is a little lackluster. The data limit on the basic plan is way too restrictive so it's really no good for daily use. And Bitdefender offers only one tunneling protocol, Catapult Hydra, which is not the most modern or versatile option out there.

So to make this VPN usable at all, you're gonna have to upgrade to premium security or the premium VPN plans. Just like TotalAV, Bitdefender does come with a free version. And while it might be a little bit better than TotalAV, I mean it is a more comprehensive package, including a virus scan, and real-time protection features while safeguarding from phishing and ransomware attacks. So it might just be the best free antivirus for Windows 11.

But what I like about Bitdefender's plans is that they're not limited to select devices. With each plan, you can choose just how many devices you need to be covered. This makes the pricing a lot more flexible, and you can get a year of Antivirus Plus at an affordable price. So if you're looking for the most affordable antivirus for Windows 11, then Bitdefender is one of the better choices.

Norton Antivirus

for a more premium, all-inclusive cybersecurity suite, let's take a look at Norton Antivirus. Not the cheapest provider on this list but it is one with very solid features. Norton for Windows 11 has all three elements of good internet protection: a VPN, password manager, and antivirus. But one gripe I have with Norton is the constant opening of new tabs or apps.

I mean, it gets to a point of being annoyingly comical. Say you want a certain tool on the desktop app, and you get a new tab. Want to get a specific feature on the mobile app? New app. How about installing a new app? Well, there's an app for that. So yeah for a suite that's so inclusive, it's weirdly built.

for our own test, we've placed those 10 malicious files on our test PC and ran a few different scans. The full system scan shows why Norton is an awesome premium antivirus finding all 10 out of 10 malware files, and only takes 11 minutes to finish. And we aren't the only ones that praise Norton's protection.

It has a long history of perfect or near-perfect virus detection results. And even during the most recent independent AV-TEST testing period, Norton's Security Suite caught 100% of zero-day malware and detected no false positives.

But one small downside of Norton is the pricing. It's the most extensive antivirus software on this list. So if your decision comes down to the price, well, I'm gonna recommend going with Bitdefender. I think that we can all appreciate that Norton gives you a 30-day trial to test things out but the lack of a truly free version is a bit of a letdown.

For just standard protection, you can get Norton Antivirus for less than $20 a year, but for the full package, it's gonna require a bit more. Look, it gives you all the security you need, as well as cloud storage. And if you don't mind spending a bit more, I'd highly recommend the Deluxe 360 plan. It has a massive 50 gigabytes of cloud storage, a great VPN, dark web monitoring, and parental control. So it's great when you want to protect all of your family's devices.


Surfshark is mostly known for its VPN but now it also contains quite a powerful antivirus with its new Surfshark One plan, and one extra feature from it that I didn't think I would use that often was Surfshark Search. It allows me to search the web without ads and more importantly, lets me keep my searching private.

Well, with Surfshark, there are no results based on your profiles, previous searches, or any other nonsense like that. It's just a simple tool that I kind of love to use all the time now.

it is worth mentioning that this antivirus doesn't have an integrated firewall that would prevent malware from sneaking into your device in the first place. Meaning it's a great protection tool but not so much a prevention tool. No vulnerability scanner could help prevent potential threats. And since it's kind of a new provider on the market, there aren't many independent tests that have been done on it yet.

So in that case, onto our own tests, Surfshark managed to find nine out of 10 malicious files. And while it's not a perfect score, it's still an amazing result from a company that's better known for its VPN. Surfshark Antivirus is a bit different from other providers on this list, at least pricing-wise. The reason for that is that it only comes with one plan, Surfshark One, and that's it. But this does include both the popular Surfshark VPN and its antivirus version.

So you're looking at under $5 a month if you go with a longer billing option. And the only way to get things any cheaper is with a longer billing period since you can't remove any features that you don't need. So if you don't have a VPN and an antivirus combo already, then Surfshark One might be the best option for you.

NordVPN Antivirus

NordVPN Antivirus helps you avoid threats in a few different ways. First, it prevents you from visiting malicious sites with a warning message. It also scans your downloaded files for any infections. Then it blocks invasive trackers, which helps prevent targeted ads. And lastly, it protects your eyes from all those intrusive ads while surfing. So as I said, it's not a full-fledged suite but it's a great combo of antivirus features and an awesome VPN.

so moving on to my test here, we have a bit of a different approach. While threat protection can be seen as any regular antivirus, it also works a little bit differently. As I mentioned before, it's more of a real-time threat prevention system than just a standard antivirus. What it lacks the most is a full scan feature.

I tested it by trying to visit some shady websites and download some nasty malicious files. And to NordVPN's credit, it did manage to detect eight out of 10 malware pieces on my PC. While NordVPN with threat protection seems similar to Surfshark, it's a bit different price-wise. Instead of having one plan that stuffs every feature into it, NordVPN has three plans.

However, in our case, VPN and threat protection are included with every single plan here. And if you can comfortably afford it, the more expensive plans come with a whopping one terabyte of encrypted cloud storage. If you don't need that, well, you can use a cheaper plan and save quite a bit more over the years. And the cheapest NordVPN plan does go for somewhere around $3 a month with the two-year billing option.


TotalAV antivirus is the best Windows 11 antivirus overall. If you just want to pick one provider and don't wanna overthink it, go with TotalAV.

Bitdefender has all the essentials for Windows 11 and runs super smoothly. It's a lean, mean malware-fighting machine.

Norton Antivirus is a super solid all-around Windows 11 antivirus. It's a little bit more expensive than the other options but it does offer more useful features.

Surfshark Antivirus is one of the best antiviruses for PC if you also need to cover your online safety. It has useful features and is easy to use, even for beginners.

NordVPN Total Protection is a great option if you want to have a VPN with an antivirus solution, the best choice for having all of your internet data protected.