Avast antivirus provides a full set of features packed into a compact package. In my tests its malware engine, it earned an outstanding score. Its web protection was also effective in identifying phishing sites that got past the default detection capabilities of both Firefox and Chrome systems. The performance scanner also did a good job of keeping its impact on system performance to an absolute minimum. In fact Avast’s performance scanner proved more efficient in reducing CPU usage than any other program I tested.

Avast also provides a range of other tools. This includes a password manager and a VPN (exclusive to Avast One), a photo vault as well as a breach monitoring feature. The security toolkit also comes with the sandbox to run applications and an internet scanner to look for weaknesses.

If you ever have trouble, Avast’s support website includes a vast knowledge base. The search function makes finding answers to frequently asked questions a breeze. If you’re unable to find the answer, Avast’s forums is a great source for assistance from other users.

While Avast says it no more sells user data however, the fact that it has done this is still fresh in the minds of a lot of consumers. In January of 2020, PCMag and Motherboard revealed that Avast sold the location and other personal data of its users to third party companies via its Jumpshot subsidiary. Avast has since stopped this practice and is now asking users to sign up for the service when they install new installations of its desktop AV software. Its privacy policy states that data from consumers is “stripped and removed from the database” before being shared with third-party.