Viruses, malware and spyware can wreak havoc on individual computers and entire networks. From small inconveniences to privacy breaches and even complete data loss, fixing infected systems can be very costly for small businesses. The solution is to use antivirus software. Antivirus software ensures that systems stay protected before any disasters occur. Two of the most popular and affordable antivirus software solutions are avast! 2014 and AVG. Here's how the two stack up against each other.
avast! Antivirus 2014
Avast offers three types of antivirus protection: avast! Free Antivirus; avast! Internet Security; and avast! Premiere. A business version, SOHO Business, is also available.
avast! Free Antivirus
Known as the Essential version, Avast! Free Antivirus includes basic antivirus, anti-malware, anti-spyware and anti-rootkit protection. Note that this free version is permitted for single-computer home use only. A paid version is required in order to run the software on multiple computers. [Best Antivirus Software for Small Businesses]
avast! Internet Security
The all-inclusive version of the software — avast! Internet Security — has all the features of the free version, along with SafeZone for secure payments and banking; Silent Firewall to block hacker attacks, privacy breaches and other cybersecurity risks; and anti-spam to fight phishing attempts and other email scams. It also includes a Sandbox feature, which lets users safely run infected, potentially harmful or otherwise suspicious files in a virtual environment to prevent any viruses from spreading. avast! Internet Security starts at $39.99 a year for up to three years.
For full protection, the top-notch version — avast! Premiere — is considered the most powerful antivirus software Avast has to offer. It features extra capabilities, such as Automatic Software Updater, to automatically patch security holes in outdated software; AccessAnywhere for remote PC access; and Data Shredder, to permanently erase data using military-grade technology. avast! Premiere starts at $49.99 a year for up to three years.
Avast also offers antivirus plans specifically for small businesses. The SOHO Business plan protects up to 10 computers and includes all of the aforementioned features, plus website isolation, security outside of the home network, centralized administration console and remote management. SOHO Business costs $39.99 a year for advanced protection and $49.99 a year for maximum protection.
AVG is a popular antivirus and anti-malware software for PC, Mac, Android, iOS and Windows Phone devices. AVG offers two antivirus options for single computers. AVG AntiVirus Free 2014 features antivirus (viruses, spyware and malware), link protection that scans for malicious content in links and File Shredder to securely delete private files. A paid version, AVG Internet Security 2014 ($54.99 a year for one computer), includes advanced features, such as Online Shield to protect users from harmful downloads, Data Safe for file encryption and password-protection, and Anti-Spam and Firewall to combat hackers.
Like Avast, AVG also offers other antivirus software built especially for small businesses: AVG Antivirus Business Edition and AVG Internet Security Business Edition. Remote virus removal is also available.
[For a side-by-side comparison of the best antivirus software visit our sister site Business.com.]
AVG Antivirus Business Edition
AVG Antivirus Business Edition is a comprehensive antivirus software that protects PCs, laptops and servers. To protect PCs and laptops, this version uses Endpoint and Firewall Security to both fight viruses and block hacker access. It also uses File Server Security to go beyond computers and protect servers from attacks. Additionally, it offers Remote Endpoint Management, which allows users to administer the software within the network from a single location, as opposed to having to manage every single computer. AVG Antivirus Business Edition starts at $89.99 for two computers for up to two years.
AVG Internet Security Business Edition
AVG Internet Security Business Edition is just like the Antivirus Business Edition, but also includes Email Server Security. This keeps emails secure by protecting servers and inboxes from viruses and malicious attacks. This version is currently available for $94.49.
Remote Virus Removal
If you already have a virus, but don't have the time to fix it yourself, AVG offers a virus removal service that allows the company to access and clean up your system using a remote connection. AVG will also install AVG Internet Security for continuous protection. Remote virus removal costs $129.99 and comes with a money-back guarantee.
No technology is perfect. As a small business, you need an antivirus vendor that will be there for you when something goes wrong and you need support.
Avast antivirus offers free 24/7 toll-free phone and email support. Users can also request support by submitting a ticket or by asking questions in the Avast forum. A FAQ section is also available.
AVG, on the other hand, offers free business support by phone, chat and email. Users can also find support in the FAQ section or by accessing the AVG community forums.