PROS / This software can protect you against all kinds of malware, not just spyware.
CONS / You have to pay extra if you want to create a rescue disc in case your computer becomes seriously infected with spyware.
VERDICT / Its flaws are small and its benefits huge. It stands head and shoulders above most of the spyware removal programs we reviewed.
Editor’s Note: Top Ten Reviews uses test results from the independent laboratory AV-Test as part of our review process for the best antispyware 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 antispyware software.
Over the years, Kaspersky Anti-Virus has consistently ranked in the top tier of our review of the best antispyware software. It does so thanks to its excellent scores in protection, performance and usability from AV-Test. It also has a wide array of detection and removal tools that help protect your computer from becoming infected in the first place and cure your machine if it's already infected. It omits some minor features we look for in this category, such as a virtual browser and weekend support. You also have to pay extra to create a rescue CD. But it still provides enough protection, tools and support to earn it the Top Ten Reviews Bronze Award.
Every few months, AV-Test puts every program on our lineup through a battery of tests to measure their protection, performance and usability. Kaspersky scored well on all these tests. It scored 100 percent in the protection and usability tests, which means it stops all known spyware from getting onto your computer and removes those that are already there. It also means that it doesn't flag safe programs or files as threats. You can just set this program and forget about it until there's a potential treat trying to get into your system.
The performance test measured how well Kaspersky Anti-Virus manages computer resources. It scored 92 percent in this test, which is about 10 percent above the average for the spyware removal programs on our lineup. This means that you shouldn't experience very much lag while Kaspersky runs a scan. Lesser programs hog your processing power and slow down things like downloads, uploads and streaming content. If you ever do experience lag, it will only be brief and hardly noticeable.
Detection & Removal
One of the best things about Kaspersky Anti-Virus is that it allows you to install it on up to three computers. This is great because there are millions of people who own and use multiple computers, and buying antispyware software for all of them can get expensive. Kaspersky allows you to protect the machines you own without busting your budget.
Kaspersky Anti-Virus is more than just spyware removal software. It's a full-bodied anti-malware program that can protect you from common viruses, worms, keyloggers, Trojan Horses and more. One of the most dangerous threats this software can protect you from is ransomware, which allows hackers to take control of your system and only release it after you've paid them money. This can be a terrifying experience, and you can have some peace of mind knowing that Kaspersky protects you from this as well as all the other threats.
Not only does this software allow you to perform and schedule scans of your computer; it also stands guard against everything coming onto your system. For example, every USB connected device, like a flash or hard drive, is scanned the moment it’s connected to your computer. This ensures that an infected device cannot harm your computer. It also scans your email and downloads before they’re allowed on your machine. Since bogus emails are the source a lot of spyware, this is a very important feature.
This software also features a gamer mode, which allows you to put Kaspersky in the background while you play games or watch full-screen videos. This ensures that you aren't interrupted by pop-ups or alerts while you're engaged in a game or movie, so you can play and be protected at the same time.
There are a couple of omissions in this software that keep it out of the number one slot in our side-by-side comparison chart. For example, it has no virtual browser, which would allow you to surf the web with extra protection for your sensitive information like bank account, credit card and Social Security numbers. The other award winners in our lineup have this feature. It does allow you to create a rescue CD that can revive your computer in the case of a catastrophic infection or hack attack – but you have to pay extra for it. Every other product that has this ability comes standard with it.
Help & Support
Kaspersky offers a good amount of customer or technical support options. If you have a problem with your software or need to talk to a customer service representative, you can reach the company by phone 24 hours on the weekdays. There is no weekend phone support, but you can log in to the website and access a private live chat with someone from the company to resolve this issue.
Kaspersky is one of the best spyware removers you can buy. It puts up nearly perfect scores with AV-Test and allows you to protect up to three computers. It protects you from more than just spyware, covering all types of malware – including ransomware. It doesn't provide a virtual browser and charges extra to create a rescue disc, but outside of that, there's nothing to complain about with this software.