Bitdefender free edition

Bitdefender Antivirus Free

Take Bitdefender’s award-winning antivirus protection with you!
Bitdefender’s Antivirus Free is a powerful and fast solution that uses in-the-cloud scanning technology to arm your Android device with the very latest industry leading virus detection. Without slowing down your Android or draining your battery. Simply install on your Android and it’s ready to go—nothing to configure.
And it’s totally free!
Unparalleled Detection
Autopilot automatically scans any new apps that are downloaded to your Android device for viruses. Antivirus Free uses the same scanning engines as Bitdefender Mobile Security-our flagship mobile security app that has been independently certified to catch more than 99% of all viruses targeted at Android devices. This powerful scanner keeps you protected 24/7 against malicious activities.
Feather-Light Performance
Instead of downloading and storing virus signatures directly to Android devices, Antivirus Free uses in-the-cloud services to check online for the latest safeguards to outbreaks. This not only results in super-fast scans, but in close to zero impact on battery life and device performance.
Hassle-Free Operation
Don’t worry. Ever. You can sleep but Autopilot, a smart on-install scanner that checks all apps for suspicious activity, won’t. Threats and viruses are blocked before any damage is done.
Zero Configuration
Bitdefender Antivirus Free offers you essential antivirus protection against all Android threats. It is ready to go right after installation, acting as an effective guardian against mobile malware. Moreover, the Autopilot automatically scans any new apps you install.
Upgrade to Total Security for Android Devices
Upgrade to Bitdefender Mobile Security, and you’ll not only continue to enjoy the same features as above, but also gain an array of additional cutting-edge capabilities. They include the real-time scanning of pages you’re viewing online, as well as the ability to lock, locate, and wipe your Android device in case it become lost or stolen.
Download the 14-day Trial Version now –

BitDefender Antivirus

BitDefender Antivirus is a computer security program built to protect your PC thanks to its silent technology. Avoid all types of online threats from social networks or instant messaging services, and even protect your financial transactions online.

First choice of AV-Test in 2011 and 2012!

The program uses a direct virtualized detection method based on abnormal behavior to detect danger, as well as other cloud-based services. This technology, known as Active Virus Control is responsible for running analysis processes for suspicious activity.


  • New Bitdefender Safepay, a method that guarantees our transactions offering a safe and isolated browser.
  • Bitdefender Antiphishing: avoid getting caught up in scams.
  • Watch your software, its status and licenses with MyBitdefender.
  • Includes a security widget for on-demand file analysis and keeps track of tasks.
  • Immunizes USB storage drives.
  • «Rescue» mode: restart the PC in this mode if you have not been able to eliminate a security threat and perform a thorough clean and system restore.
  • Forget Autopilot Bitdefender configurations, a standalone mode.
  • Protect yourself against threats that are distributed over social networks.
  • Detects potentially dangerous links.
  • Performs scheduled scans when the computer is idle.

A versatile antivirus

There are as many BitDefender Antivirus protection options as there are channels through which our computer can be attacked. Email, web pages, links, messaging clients, social networks, shopping… Our privacy could be compromised leading to confidential data theft via methods such as phishing.

The variety of modules and specialized functions that BitDefender Antivirus includes are aimed at covering all the dangers we may be exposed to. If we add the reputation of this company in the field of computer security, you have a versatile product capable of dealing with a large number of situations.

Download BitDefender Antivirus and use your PC with maximum safety guarantees.

Sicurezza essenziale per il tuo Mac!
Bitdefender Virus Scanner rileva con facilità i malware per Mac oltre ai virus per Windows.
Virus Scanner rileverà ogni file infetto che hai scaricato o che hai ricevuto nella tua casella di posta, così da proteggere sempre il tuo Mac ed evitare di inviare eventuali file infetti ai computer dei tuoi amici.
Consenti a Bitdefender Virus Scanner di accedere alle posizioni sul tuo computer che vuoi esaminare alla ricerca di eventuali malware.
Scegli «Scansione approfondita di sistema» o «Scansioni posizioni critiche» per eseguire la scansione.
I motori pluripremiati di Bitdefender troveranno quel malware. Gratuitamente!
Assicurati che il tuo Mac non abbia file infetti.
Non mettere in pericolo i tuoi amici e familiari passandogli inconsciamente i tuoi malware.
– Rileva sia i malware per OS X che i virus Windows;
– Prima di una scansione, si aggiorna per rilevare i malware più recenti;
– Cerca eventuali malware anche negli archivi e in diversi tipi di altri file, come pdf, pkg, zip, rar, ecc.;
– Scansione delle zone critiche. Controlla rapidamente le zone del sistema più sensibili a eventuali infezioni.
– I pluripremiati motori antivirus di Bitdefender;
– Mette in quarantena i file pericolosi;
– Esegue una scansione approfondita di tutte le posizioni a cui gli viene consentito di accedere da parte dell’utente;
– Scansione «trascina e rilascia» di file o cartelle;
– Opzione per escludere file e cartelle dalla scansione (ad esempio, backup di Time Machine, ecc.)
– Interfaccia intuitiva.
– A causa del sandboxing nell’App Store, la app ha accesso solo alle posizioni a cui l’utente gli ha garantito l’accesso.
Garantisci l’accesso all’intero disco per una protezione maggiore:
– La disinfezione è limitata dai privilegi dell’utente che esegue la app;
– Non esamina i programmi archiviati nella memoria.

With next to nothing to adjust, Bitdefender’s Antivirus Free Edition focuses entirely on protecting computers against the latest malware threats and leaves out the extras. It does without common extra features, or even the ability to schedule scans, but Bitdefender Free protects better than most antivirus products, free or paid.

If you want a more complete security suite for nothing, Avast Free Antivirus includes accessories such as a password manager, hardened browser and a gaming mode, but its malware protection falls behind Bitdefender’s. Kaspersky Free Antivirus offers similarly good protection and system performance, but for a pure set-it-and-forget-it free antivirus solution, Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition can’t be beat among the best free antivirus programs.

Costs and What’s Covered

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition works with Windows 7 (with Service Pack 1) through Windows 10. Detecting and preventing malware infection is all it does; there are no extra features.

Fortunately, Bitdefender happens to make some of the best Mac antivirus software, best Android antivirus apps and best antivirus software overall.

To get more, you’ll have to step up to Bitdefender Antivirus Plus (starting at $40 per year for a single PC), which adds a spam filter, a secure banking browser and a password manager among other features. It also protects against ransomware attack and gives you 200MB of free VPN data per day.

Bitdefender Internet Security (starting at $80 per year) adds a firewall, parental controls and a webcam monitor. The top-flight Bitdefender Total Security (starting at $90 per year for five devices) adds file encryption and a performance optimizer and bundles in licenses for Bitdefender’s paid Mac and Android antivirus software.

MORE: Antivirus Software – Reviews of Free and Paid Versions

All paid versions include 24/7 online support. Unfortunately for older PCs, Bitdefender has discontinued Bitdefender Internet Security for XP and Vista.

Antivirus Protection

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition compares files against known malware signatures and watches software behavior for indications of infection. If it finds a new threat, Bitdefender uploads the file in question to cloud servers for analysis.

By default, Bitdefender collects information about your computer’s operations, which it uses to fine-tune its products, but you can opt out. Malware-signature updates are sent several times a day to the company’s 500 million users.

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition’s Protection Shield continually scans for infections in real time. It doesn’t block spam email messages, but it does scan email attachments for known bad actors and watches out for phishing emails.

You can check files for malware by starting a Full System Scan from the main screen; by dragging and dropping a file or folder into the Bitdefender’s scan box; or by right-clicking a file in Windows Explorer and selecting the scan option from the pop-up menu.

There’s no quick-scan option, but the full-system scan should be fast enough.

On the downside, there’s no a quick-scan option, scan scheduling or automatic scanning of USB drives.

Antivirus Performance

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition protects better than most, if not all, paid security products. In our own tests, performed from February through June 2018, Bitdefender Antivirus Plus, which uses the same scanning technology as Antivirus Free Edition, stopped 99 percent of malware, beating out all other makers of free antivirus software.

In German lab AV-Test’s March-April 2018 survey of antivirus software running on Windows 10, Bitdefender Internet Security scored a perfect 100 percent in both months against newly discovered zero-day malware and widespread, prevalent malware. But Bitdefender’s detection was a bit trigger-happy, with two false positives – harmless software flagged as malicious – in March and six in April.

Bitdefender’s scores in the subsequent Windows 10 tests, conducted in May and June 2018, were similar: 100 percent of zero-day and widespread malware was blocked, but three false positives were registered in May.

In our own tests, Bitdefender stopped 99 percent of malware.

In January and February 2018 in AV-Test’s Windows 7 rounds, Bitdefender Internet Security mirrored these results, acing the zero-day and widespread malware tests across the board, but with a total of eight false positives over both months. Among antivirus companies with free programs, only Kaspersky Lab came close.

Six months of tests in early 2018 by Austrian lab AV-Comparatives reinforced this assessment, with Bitdefender averaging an impressive 99.8 percent score; only Kaspersky and Avira came close. It had six false positives over all six months.
MORE: Avast! Free Antivirus Review: Fast, Free and Fun

But SE Labs, based near London, ranked Bitdefender Internet Security seventh out of 13 products tested, just behind Windows Defender. Bitdefender was dinged for spotting, but not stopping, four out of 25 highly targeted attacks of the sort you’d see in espionage campaigns, and for merely neutralizing rather than completely eliminating several pieces of malware.

SELabs gave Bitdefender Internet Security an overall score of 96 percent, less than comparable products from ESET, Kaspersky, McAfee, Norton and Trend Micro. Of those, only Kaspersky makes a free antivirus product.

Security and Privacy Features

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is basic, uncomplicated and straightforward. However, there are several Bitdefender free tools, which you can download and install separately, to pick up some of the slack.

Traffic Light browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox and Safari analyze URLs and warn of known malicious sites that have a history of offering malware. Home Scanner looks for vulnerable devices and weak passwords on your network. Bitdefender’s Anti-Ransomware Tool decrypts files locked up by certain strains of ransomware, although it doesn’t offer the file protections of Bitdefender’s paid antivirus products.

Should your computer become unresponsive, you can download and use Bitdefender Rescue CD software to get it back. After putting the software on a CD or USB flash drive, you boot the system into a clean Linux environment to perform a scan.

Performance and System Impact

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition doesn’t use an inordinate amount of system resources. To check the program’s impact, we ran our custom OpenOffice benchmark test, which measures how long an OpenOffice spreadsheet takes to match 20,000 names to 20,000 addresses.

Our testbed was an Asus X555LA notebook with a 2GHz Core i3 processor, 6GB of RAM and 117GB of files on a 500GB hard drive, running fully updated Windows 10.

Before any third-party antivirus software was loaded, the OpenOffice test took 6:58 to complete, which we used as the baseline. The spreadsheet task time lengthened to 7:19 with Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition installed, but not scanning. This amounted to a 5 percent passive slowdown, which few users would notice.

It took 8:05 to complete our OpenOffice benchmark while Bitdefender was performing a full-system scan, indicating a 16 percent slowdown from the baseline, and a 10 percent one from the background load after the installation. Those are pretty good scores; the active-versus-passive difference is actually less than Windows Defender’s.

Bitdefender Antivirus Free’s initial system scan, which you’ll have to suffer through only once, took 2 hours and 15 minutes, long enough for several cups of coffee, a newspaper read and a good walk. The initial scan looked at 431,908 files.

Later system scans, which didn’t examine files Bitdefender learned to ignore, settled down to an average of 6 minutes and 23 seconds, which is very speedy. There’s no quick-scan option, but the full-system scan should be fast enough.


Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition’s dark interface takes up about one-quarter of the system’s desktop. A green check mark next to «Your Device Is Protected» shows that all is safe and secure. If you’re in danger or need to do anything, the message changes to «Your Device Is at Risk» and the check mark becomes a red X.

There’s a System Scan button to examine the entire computer, but Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition won’t let you schedule scans; they’ll just happen automatically during quiet periods. Bitdefender displays the name of each item being scanned next to the scan’s progress.

The Quarantine section lists potentially dangerous items, while Exclusions lets you whitelist items you know are safe. You can turn the behavior-based Protection Shield on and off.

Account Info takes you to your Bitdefender Central online account and lets you opt out of Bitdefender data collection and end pop-up offers. Help and Support links to the support personnel.

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition lacks customization potential. You can’t exclude specific file types, adjust scanning criteria or individually turn protection features on or off.

Installation and Support

You’ll get started with Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition by downloading a 9.5MB beachhead installer, which, in turn, downloads a 350MB file. You must choose whether to opt out of Bitdefender’s data-collection program, and then the software scans your system for malware and installs itself.

Finally, you’ll need to create a Bitdefender Central account. This provides access to limited support and lets you manage other devices with Bitdefender software installed. It took us a little over 9 minutes to install Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition.

Bitdefender provides lots of online tech support, but not phone support, for the free product. You can work through the website’s FAQs and forum or email the technicians a question, but your email will be answered on a lower priority than those of paying customers.

Bottom Line

Simple and straightforward, Bitdefender’s Antivirus Free Edition may be minimalist but it provides better protection than many paid security programs. Its only real competition is Kaspersky Free Antivirus, which has a quick scan and scan scheduling, but a heavier performance impact during scans.. As good as its defenses are, Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition won’t bog down your system.

On the other hand, Bitdefender has a slow initial scan, and everything takes place below the surface, with no customization options. You can’t even schedule nightly scans.

If you like your antivirus protection uncomplicated and simple, or you’re installing it for someone who will never interact with the software, Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is an ideal choice. But if you crave extra features, such as a password manager, scan scheduling or a gaming mode, Avast Free Antivirus might do the trick if you’re willing to settle for lesser malware protection.

Credit: Tom’s Guide

Microsoft includes free antivirus protection with recent versions of Windows, and it works pretty well, especially in Windows 10. However, you can get even better protection against malware with a third-party antivirus, and you don’t necessarily have to pay for it. Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition includes the core malware-fighting components of Bitdefender’s commercial edition, but without the vast collection of additional security features, and without some advanced layers of malware protection.

Installing Bitdefender Free is quick and easy. During the process, it downloads the latest version and scans for active malware. You need to sign up for a Bitdefender account to activate it (or sign in if you already have one). The premium edition’s main window isn’t especially busy, but the free edition is simplicity itself. There’s a button to run the full system scan, a drag/drop spot to scan specific files or folders, and a timeline of recent activity. That’s it.

When you launch a scan, the scan’s progress appears in the events timeline, unless you click it to see the full scan window. A full scan took an hour and a half, a bit over the current average of an hour and a quarter. However, that scan clearly performed some optimization, as a repeat scan finished in not quite 13 minutes. As always, you should run a full scan right after installation, to root out any nasties that invaded the system before you installed antivirus.

Excellent Lab Results

While Bitdefender Free doesn’t include every feature of the commercial edition, its core antivirus engine is the same as what the independent labs test. However, the independent labs test the commercial product, not the free one. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus(25.99 1 device / 1 year – 35% off at Bitdefender) did slightly better in my hands on tests, so chances are good the free antivirus wouldn’t reach the same level in lab tests. Results discussed below are for the commercial edition.

Three of the four labs that I follow include Bitdefender in their testing. In the three-part test regularly reported by AV-Test Institute, Bitdefender earned 6 of 6 possible points in all three categories, for a perfect 18 points. F-Secure, Kaspersky, McAfee, and Norton also earned the maximum points.

Lab Test Results Chart

The researchers at AV-Comparatives perform a wide variety of tests; I follow four of them. Products that pass a test earn Standard certification, while those that do significantly better receive Advanced or even Advanced+ certification. Bitdefender took Advanced+ in all four tests. Kaspersky did nearly as well, with three Advanced+ and one Advanced.

The tests performed by MRG-Effitas are a bit different from the rest. To pass this lab’s banking Trojans test, a product needs a perfect score; anything less is failure. Another test using a wide variety of malware offers two passing levels. If a product absolutely blocks every installation attempt, it passes at Level 1. If some malware gets through, but is eliminated within 24 hours, that earns Level 2. Anything else is a fail. Bitdefender passed the banking test, along with Avira, ESET, and Kaspersky. It also received Level 1 certification in the broad-spectrum test, along with Kasperky, Microsoft Windows Defender Security Center, and seven others.

SE Labs attempts to simulate the real world of malware as closely as possible for testing purposes, using a capture/replay system to present each product with a real-world Web-based attack. Certification from this lab comes at five levels, AAA, AA, A, B, and C. Alas, Bitdefender doesn’t appear in the latest report from SE Labs. When last tested, it took AA certification.

I have contrived an algorithm that maps all the test results onto a 10-point scale and returns an aggregate lab score, as long as the product has results from at least two labs. Avast, Avira, and Kaspersky Free are among the products that appear in reports from all four labs. In terms of aggregate score, Kaspersky rules that group, with 9.9 of 10 possible points. Bitdefender, tested by three labs, holds the top score overall, a perfect 10. Once again, these results reflect the commercial Bitdefender antivirus; the free edition may not have fared as well in testing.

Good Malware Protection

I always run my own hands-on testing, just to get a feel for the way a product handles malware. If I don’t get enough data from the labs, my hands-on malware protection test is the only way I can rate antivirus accuracy. In this case, the labs have already made it very clear that Bitdefender is a winner.

When I opened my folder of samples, Bitdefender started picking off those it recognized. It took a few minutes to get through them all, but in the end the results were almost identical to those of the commercial Bitdefender. In two instances, the free antivirus left samples present but blocked all access, where the commercial edition removed them. The effect is the same.

Other differences cropped up when I launched the surviving samples. The additional protection layers of the commercial edition caught a few nasties that the free edition missed. In the end, the free edition scored 7.7 points to the paid edition’s 8.0 points. Neither of these scores is very good, but I give more weight to Bitdefender’s amazing lab scores.

For comparison, Webroot detected 100 percent of this same sample set and scored 9.7 of 10 possible points. Avast, McAfee, and Ashampoo all scored above 9.0. And Symantec Norton AntiVirus Plus matched Webroot’s score when tested with my previous collection of samples. Again, when my results don’t jibe with the findings of the labs, I yield to the labs.

Malware Protection Results Chart

My malicious URL blocking test takes an hour or more to run. In this test, I challenge the antivirus’s Web-based protection to keep the browser safe from 100 very fresh malware-hosting URLs. I also give credit if the real-time antivirus eliminates the malicious payload during the download process.

The free Bitdefender blocks access to nasty URLs below the browser level, so it doesn’t have to install a browser extension. It blocked 76 percent of the malware-hosting URLs, and the on-access scan wiped out another 8 percent, for a total of 84 percent. That’s pretty good, but its commercial cousin managed 92 percent. At the top of the heap, Trend Micro blocked 99 percent of the malware downloads, while McAfee and Sophos Home Free blocked 97 percent.

Good at Phishing Detection

The most accurate malware-detection system in the world can’t help you if you fall for a scam and give away your precious passwords. Phishing websites masquerade as banks, online merchants, and even gaming websites, and they do their best to steal your login credentials. They get caught and blacklisted quickly enough, but the fraudsters just grab their winnings and move on.

To test a product’s ability to keep users safe from this kind of fraud, I scrape phishing URLs from a variety of reporting sites. I try to get URLs so new that they haven’t been analyzed and verified. I run the test simultaneously on the product under testing and on instances of Chrome, Edge, and Firefox, relying on the phishing protection built into the three browsers.

Phishing Protection Results Chart

For each suspected fraud, I launch the URL in all four browsers and record the results. If any of the four can’t load the URL, I discard it. If the page doesn’t actively attempt to capture login credentials, I discard it. When I have 100 or so data points, I run the numbers.

Bitdefender detected 91 percent of the verified frauds, which is pretty good. However, 10 recent products have scored even better, with 100 percent scorers Kaspersky and McAfee AntiVirus Plus($19.99 at McAfee) at the top. The commercial Bitdefender is right up there too, with 99 percent.

See How We Test Security Software

What’s Not Here

At this point, I’ve described the entirety of what Bitdefender Free does. The feature list of the full, premium Bitdefender Antivirus goes way, way beyond this. Please read my review (linked above) for full details on what you get by paying for the full edition. I’ll list the bonus features here.

The Bitdefender Wallet component is a complete, if basic, password manager. It captures and replays passwords, imports passwords from your browsers, generates strong passwords, and fills Web forms. It doesn’t try for advanced features like two-factor authentication or automatic password update.

Bitdefender SafePay is a hardened separate desktop designed to keep your sensitive online transactions safe. Processes running under SafePay are isolated from processes on the regular desktop. The Wi-Fi Advisor both checks your home network’s security and warns when you connect to an insecure network. If the antivirus can’t eliminate a particularly nasty malware specimen, you can reboot in Rescue Mode to handle the threat outside of Windows.

Using the File Shredder you can delete sensitive files permanently, beyond the possibility of forensic recovery. A Search Advisor add-in marks up dangerous websites in search results. And the Vulnerability Scan checks for missing security updates and for weak Windows passwords. A new ransomware protection layer aims to protect your important files. And none of these bonus features are present in the free edition.

The Anti-tracker browser extension is new for the 2020 product line. It aims to keep advertisers, analytics, and all other trackers from snooping on your browsing activity. When you visit a page, its toolbar icon displays the number of trackers blocked. You can click for details, including an estimate of how much blocking the trackers sped up page load time. This, too, isn’t in the free edition.

Basic Protection

As you can see, Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition doesn’t have the wealth of features that makes its for-pay sibling such a powerhouse. It does contain the same basic protection against malware, malicious websites, and fraudulent sites, though it lacks some of the premium edition’s additional protective layers. If you want every drop the famed Bitdefender malware protection, and you can spare the cash, it’s worth paying for Bitdefender Antivirus Plus. But if the budget won’t budge, the free edition is still very good.

Avast Free Antivirus offers password management, vulnerability scanning, system cleanup, and an unusual scan for network and router vulnerabilities. Kaspersky Free gets excellent scores from the independent labs and comes with a free, feature-limited VPN. Admittedly Kaspersky Free lacks one malware detection component found in its premium cousin, but my tests showed no difference. These two are our Editors’ Choice free antivirus utilities. Of course, since they’re all free, you can give each of them (and Bitdefender, too) a try before settling on your favorite free protection.

Where to Buy


Our Best Antivirus Picks

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Further Reading

  • Avast Defends Data Harvesting, Plans to Get Users to Agree to It
  • Windows 7 Is Dead: Long Live Your Antivirus!
  • The Cost of Avast’s Free Antivirus: Companies Can Spy on Your Clicks
  • Readers’ Choice Awards 2020: Antivirus & Security Suite Software
  • Business Choice Awards 2020: Security Software

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

Parental controls

Bitdefender’s Parental Controls feature has a reasonable set of features for monitoring and controlling your child’s digital activities. You’re able to block websites by content, restrict application use, block device usage for specified periods (like bedtime) or set a daily limit of screen time which includes both mobile and desktop devices. Android apps enable monitoring who your child contacts by calls and messages, and you can optionally block calls without caller ID.

We don’t often pay a lot of attention to app review scores from users, but being rated at 2.1 out of 5 on the Play store, Bitdefender Parental Control’s Android offering seems like it might have some problems. We haven’t carried out a definitive review and so can’t tell you whether the score is fair, or not, but if you’re interested in the app, we’d recommend you test it carefully first.

If the baseline app works for you, upgrading to Bitdefender Parental Control Premium gets you several more powerful features, including the intelligent detection of cyber-bullying, aggressiveness and grooming, as well as requests for addresses, phone numbers and other information.

You can upgrade to Parental Control Premium from within Internet Security and Total Security 2020 for $49.99. Alternatively, buy both at the same time and you’ll save $5.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

Webcam and microphone protection

A Webcam Protection module gives you control over which applications can access your webcam. This has more options than usual, with settings to block access to all but your chosen applications, block browsers only, or disable the webcam for everything. We tested this with our custom command line capture tool, and Internet Security correctly notified us that it was trying to access the webcam, and blocked it when requested.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

The new Microphone Monitor takes a more basic approach, raising alerts for apps which access the microphone, but not allowing you to block them, or set up rules to block all future microphone access.

This clearly isn’t as useful as it could be, but it’s vastly better than most competitors, who typically have no microphone-related features at all. We’re happy to see it added to the package, and hopefully it’ll gain features in upcoming releases.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

Bitdefender Total Security 2020

The top-of-the-range Bitdefender Total Security 2020 introduces a familiar set of PC maintenance tools, including modules to highlight large files, remove disk-hogging junk and optimize the boot process.

Total Security’s clean-up options are basic, with CCleaner finding 50% more junk files on our test PC. It’s a similar story with the Startup Optimizer, where Bitdefender gives you options to enable, disable or delay when individual apps boot, but CCleaner also offers expert-level control over services, scheduled tasks and more.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

The real benefit of upgrading to Bitdefender Total Security 2020 is you get apps for Android, Mac and iOS devices, as well as PCs. And although the new apps can’t match the power of the Windows edition, they’re are well worth having.

The Mac app looks out for malware and adware and includes Time Machine protection to keep your backups safe from ransomware. Top quality anti-phishing blocks access to malicious links, and the 200MB a day version of Bitdefender VPN is thrown in.

Bitdefender Mobile Security for iOS is mostly about detecting malicious websites, but it does this well, and that alone could save you from real problems. As a bonus, an account privacy tool raises an alert if your web accounts are involved in a privacy breach.

Bitdefender Mobile Security for Android includes everything you get in the Mac and iOS builds, and adds on-installation scanning for dangerous apps, an app locker to prevent others accessing your personal data, and anti-theft to remotely locate, lock or wipe a missing device.

You can get a lot of this functionality elsewhere for free – there’s no shortage of app locker or anti-theft apps, for instance – but as we discussed earlier, Bitdefender’s malicious URL blocking easily outperforms most of the competition. That feature alone might justify the install.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

If you’re still in doubt, check the prices. A baseline Bitdefender Internet Security 2020 license protects up to three PCs for $40 in year one, $80 on renewal. Upgrading to Bitdefender Total Security 2020 protects up to five devices, which could be any mix of Windows, Mac, Android or iOS, but only costs from $45 in year one, $90 on renewal.

Covering up to 10 devices still only costs $50 in year one, $100 on renewal, and you can save more money by adding years to the license.

  • Get Bitdefender Total Security 2020 for 60% off by clicking here if you live in the US or UK or alternatively !

There may be better deals around, depending on the features you need. Avira Prime is priced similarly to Bitdefender Total Security, for instance, and although it doesn’t have as many security tools, you do get unlimited access to Avira’s Phantom VPN, a very valuable extra.

If you’re looking purely at antivirus and security, though, Bitdefender Total Security 2020 is an impressive package which is crammed with valuable features and functionality. If you’re looking for a new all-platform antivirus, it’s a must-see.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Bitdefender’s security range is fairly priced, and relatively cheap if you’re covering a lot of devices, but if you still can’t afford it, no problem: there’s always Bitdefender Free.

While free, it’s a very basic product (unsurprisingly). The most significant issue is you don’t get the multiple layers of anti-ransomware protection (although the core engine will still detect and block most threats), but it’s also missing most of the extras you get in Bitdefender Antivirus Plus. There’s no password manager, no Safepay secure browser, no VPN, no Safe Files system to prevent unauthorized file changes, no vulnerability scanner, no secure file deletion, no Wi-Fi security advisor, no anti-tracker browsing protection, not even any support.

Bitdefender Free does include the core essentials, though – the main antivirus engine, and URL filtering to block malicious websites – and these aren’t crippled in any major way (meaning there are no catches like the app doesn’t scan downloads) to try and persuade you to upgrade. This isn’t some limited demo package; it’s a real antivirus which you can practically use in the long-term.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)

Getting started

Installing Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is quick and easy. There are barely any prompts or questions, and after we had handed over our email address to create a Bitdefender account, the setup process was finished, and we were ready to go.

Bitdefender Free’s interface is just about as simple as an antivirus can possibly be. There’s a System Scan button to check your entire PC, a box where you’re able to drag and drop any files or folders for a quick security scan, and a Settings button with various protection-related options and tweaks.

It’s a pity that there’s no Quick Scan option, which checks the most likely infection points in a minute or two, as seen with Bitdefender’s other apps. System Scan takes an age, by comparison, although it does get faster after you’ve run the first full scan.

On-demand scans aren’t particularly important, though, as Bitdefender should pick up malware as soon as it arrives on your PC. Bitdefender Free is undoubtedly easy to use, and for the most part you can just leave it to run in the background, watching over your PC, and raising alerts if anything dubious happens.

(Image credit: Bitdefender)


Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition may be short on features, but it gives you the same core antivirus engine as the commercial packages, and we found it was just as effective at detecting and blocking malware and dangerous URLs.

The one exception was its performance with our own custom ransomware. Bitdefender Antivirus Plus detected and blocked this from its behavior alone; Bitdefender Antivirus Free wasn’t smart enough to do that, and our ransomware simulator was able to encrypt thousands of files. This suggests that although the free edition will block known ransomware, it might not be as effective in protecting you from brand new threats.

Although that’s not ideal, independent testing from AV-Comparatives, AV-Test and others consistently places Bitdefender at or near the top of their respective protection ratings, meaning it is one of the most accurate engines around.

What’s more, Bitdefender is significantly better at blocking malicious URLs than most of the competition, which may help you avoid infection from the latest ransomware (and other threats) in the first place.

Put it all together and Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is a capable antivirus offering which is good enough to outperform some of the commercial competition. But it doesn’t quite match the protection of the paid versions, and we would recommend upgrading to one of those, if you can.

  • Want to compare Bitdefender to its rivals? Check out our best antivirus guide

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is blazing fast, free to use, and loaded only with the bare-bones protection features that every computer needs.

Lightning-fast free antivirus

  • Installs in seconds, runs at max speed without slowing down your PC
  • Good for gaming, image and video editing, and resource-intensive applications
  • Powerful protection packed into a light solution

A strong, silent guardian for your PC

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is an antivirus to rely on. It uses a minimalistic approach to make sure of the one thing that matters: whether you’re a rookie or a techie, your PC will be defended against intruders.

  • On-demand & on-access scanning that runs in the background
  • Essential protection without the extra stuff
  • No time-consuming scans, no sudden lag, no ads out of the blue


How can you keep your passwords safe and still browse freely? It’s easy: Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition sniffs and blocks by default phishing websites that pretend to be trustworthy in order to steal your data.


If you ever land on scam websites, our advanced filtering system detects suspicious web page behavior and prevents your sensitive financial data from falling into the wrong hands.

Real-time Threat Detection

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition uses behavioral detection to closely monitor your active apps. When it detects anything suspicious, it takes instant action.

Virus Scanning and Malware Removal

Powerful scan engines ensure detection and removal of all malware, from viruses, worms and Trojans, to ransomware, zero-day exploits, rootkits and spyware.

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Feather-light and free antivirus solution from renowned developer that keeps the PC protected at all times from malware without requiring user configuration

Bitdefender is already a household name among the user community when it comes to effective antivirus solutions that deliver the highest ranked performance results. Although the developer prides itself with a lineup of three professional av solutions – Antivirus Plus, Internet Security and Total Security, it puts up for grabs a simpler version designed to fend off malware attacks while remaining resource-friendly.

Effective and non-intrusive av solution

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition sits quietly in the system tray area while remaining alert at all times and notifies users only when detecting suspicious activity on the PC. It is ideal for those who prefer an av tool that deals with any problems on its own without requiring configuration.

The setup procedure is a fast and easy task that does not need special input. Bitdefender offers to run an initial scan on the computer at startup, in order to assess the current situation on malware.

The program does not only perform on-demand scans but prevents viruses and other e-threats from infiltrating into the machine using a real-time safeguard with optimized settings.

User-friendly interface and one-click control

The interface consists of a small frame that pops up from the notifications area when called. It shows the current protection status and allows users to deactivate the virus shield and auto scan modules with one click.

Any identified threats are automatically sent to the quarantine, where users may examine full paths and open file locations in Windows Explorer, as well as decide whether to delete or keep the items.

Performance and conclusion

The application is quite effective at detecting and quarantining files. It does not interfere with the user’s normal activity on the PC, runs on a light amount of CPU and RAM, finishes scan jobs rapidly and delivers very good results concerning malware detection ratio.

To sum it up, Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition offers simple and effective methods to keep the PC protected from malware at all time, considering that it is a free tool. Those looking for additional features may upgrade to the other versions.

Filed under

Virus removal Virus scanner Virus detector Antivirus Malware Trojan Remover

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Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is part of these download collections: Scan For Viruses, Free Antivirus

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition was reviewed by Elena Opris 4.0/5

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is an unusually straightforward malware hunter which keeps all complexities to the absolute minimum.

The program doesn’t require any configuration, for instance. There’s no desktop gadget to manage, and you won’t be hassled with security alerts. Instead, the program simply checks files as you access them, runs occasional system scans when your PC is idle, and cleans up any infections all on its own. You can also scan files and folders on demand by right-clicking them and choosing «Scan with Bitdefender», but that’s about it.

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition does have a basic interface available, if you need it – but we do mean «basic». Click its system tray icon and you’ll find you can turn the real-time protection or automatic scanning system off, while other buttons display system logs or help you access your «My Bitdefender» account (if you have one). But, again, there’s nothing complicated or difficult, and perhaps 30 seconds of browsing will show you everything there is to see.

We have one or two small concerns about the program. It protested about being installed alongside an «incompatible» product (Norton Internet Security), for example. Everything still seemed to work just fine, but we’d expect Bitdefender Antivirus Free to be installed as a second line of defence, not a primary antivirus tool, so it really needs to run happily alongside just about everything else around.

And, for some reason, we found the program’s status was displayed as «Updating…» almost all the time. Maybe it was just taking its time, being careful to use minimal bandwidth, but this still became a little worrying after a while.

At its core, though, Bitdefender Antivirus Free looks very promising: the program provides a good basic level of protection, yet remains exceptionally easy to use.


Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition delivers a good level of basic malware protection via an extremely simple, «install and forget it»-type interface

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