PROS / This anti-malware program scored highly on all of AV-Test.org's evaluations.
CONS / You're not protected from ransomware – a particularly nasty threat that can be devastating.
VERDICT / BullGuard performs well and has many of the tools we look for in this category, but it's missing just enough to keep it in the bottom tier of our side-by-side comparison chart.
Editor’s Note: Top Ten Reviews uses test results from the independent laboratory AV-Test as part of our review process for the best anti-malware software. AV-Test looks specifically at protection, performance and usability on multiple versions of Windows operating systems, and it performs these evaluations several times throughout the year. We use the most current AV-Test scores available at the time of our review. It is possible that new AV-Test scores will be released after our review goes live on the site. We will consider these scores during our next review of the best anti-malware software.
BullGuard is an anti-malware solution that provides adequate protection against computer viruses, spyware, keyloggers and more. You can install it on up to three computers and use it to automatically scan emails and USB devices for potential threats. But it's missing several critical tools we look for in this category, such as a gamer mode, vulnerability scans and protection from ransomware.
Along with all the other programs on our side-by-side comparison chart, AV-Test tests BullGuard several times a year. It measures each malware remover's protection, performance and usability. These tests measure how well the programs protect against malware threats, utilize system resources and recognize legitimate programs. BullGuard scored 92 percent in all these tests, showing it's an effective tool against malware – just not the best.
You can only protect one computer with this anti-malware software. The best programs reviewed allow you to install the software on up to three machines.
This software has several of the core tools we look for, such as automatic scans of your email and USB drives for malware. But it's missing several critical ones, keeping it in the bottom tier of our comparison matrix. For example, the program doesn't have a gamer mode, which would put malware protection in the background while you're in full-screen mode to avoid disrupting your games and videos. It also lacks the ability to run a vulnerability scan on your computer or create a rescue CD in case of a catastrophic malware infection.
Perhaps the most glaring omission in this malware remover is its inability to protect your computer from ransomware. This is when hackers seize control of your computer and hold it hostage until you pay them to release it. This can be a terrifying experience, and one that exposes you to many additional threats like identity theft and data destruction – even if you pay the ransom. We'd like to see BullGuard add ransomware protection in future versions of the software.
Despite what it lacks, BullGuard earned a spot in our review of the best malware removal software. It provides adequate protection from common malware threats and uses your computer resources effectively. But it's missing some of the most important features we look for in this category – including ransomware protection.