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The Best Antivirus with VPN of 2022

By Tibor Moes / December 2021

The Best Antivirus with a VPN of 2022

Our test process

When we test and review the best antivirus with a VPN, we test both the antivirus software and the VPN software in-depth. Our process is the following:

The antivirus software test:

  • We install the software on Windows 10 and 11, macOS, Android, and iOS.
  • We analyze the anti-malware protection by averaging all AV-Test scores since October 2016.
  • We test the firewalls by running the ShieldsUP! test of the Gibson Research Corporation.
  • We test the password managers by creating, storing, and auto-filling passwords for several websites.
  • We test the parental controls by setting content filters and screentime rules, and attempt to circumvent them.
  • We test secondary features like anti-phishing, anti-theft, dark web monitoring, secure browser, and more.

The VPN software test:

  • We install the software on Windows 10 and 11, macOS, Android, and iOS.
  • We test the download speed, when connected to a local European server and a trans-Atlantic American server.
  • We test the security by running IP, DNS, and WebRTC data leak experiments.
  • We analyze the security by checking the VPN protocol, encryption standard, and security features.
  • We analyze the privacy by reading the privacy policy and checking for automatic data collection opt-in tricks.
  • We analyze the functionality by attempting to play Netflix and download torrents while the VPN is active.
  • We analyze the censorship avoidance capabilities by reading real users reviews around the web.

Below are the brands we consider the best antivirus software with a VPN. We hope you will find our work helpful.

About the author

This article was written by Tibor Moes, founder and CEO of SoftwareLab.

Tibor is an engineer from the Netherlands that started reviewing security software in 2014. Since then, he has tested most leading antivirus software, VPN, password managers, and hosting services.

Currently, he uses Norton to protect his devices, CyberGhost for his privacy, and Dashlane for his passwords. This website, SoftwareLab.org, is hosted on a Digital Ocean server via Cloudways and built with DIVI on WordPress.

Norton Antivirus Review

Norton 360

Recommended on all OS

  • Device Security 100% 100%
  • Online Privacy 100% 100%
Advanced antivirus with an unlimited VPN.

Norton 360 offers advanced protection for your devices, privacy, and identity. It is the best full-featured antivirus on all operating software.

Norton’s VPN is built in-house. It’s fast, secure, private, works with Netflix and torrents, and is included for free with all Norton 360 products. In addition, the VPN has no data limit.

BitDefender Antivirus Review

Bitdefender

Recommend on Windows

  • Device Security 100% 100%
  • Online Privacy 96% 96%

Affordable antivirus with a limited VPN.

Bitdefender Internet Security offers affordable “set it and forget” protection. It is the best low-cost antivirus for Windows PCs.

Bitdefender’s VPN is built on Aura’s VPN tech. It’s fast, secure, private, and works with Netflix and torrents. The VPN has a 200 MB/day data limit. The unlimited VPN costs extra.

Reviews of the Best Antivirus with VPN of 2020

You want the best antivirus with VPN of 2022. We are here to help.

Since 2014, we have tested, reviewed, and compared antivirus software and Virtual Private Networks (VPN). Above, you can see the two providers that we recommend the most. Below, you can find in-depth reviews of the best antivirus with VPN of 2022.

Click on the links to be taken to your review of choice.

Or simply scroll down.

Prices vary per country. Click the buttons below to see it in yours:

Norton Antivirus Review

Norton Antivirus

Windows, macOS, Android & iOS

  • Device Security 100% 100%
  • Online Privacy 100% 100%

Norton’s Antivirus with VPN – Review Summary

Norton 360 is the best antivirus with a VPN included. Its antivirus protection is outstanding on all operating systems, and it includes a VPN with unlimited data for free. On top of that, it’s reasonably priced.

In contrast to many other antivirus software, Norton’s entire feature range is excellent. The web protection, firewall, password manager, parental controls, webcam protection, and dark web monitoring, simply all work excellently.

Where Kaspersky and Bitdefender license VPN tech from Aura, Norton has built its own VPN in-house. This gives Norton a significant price advantage because it doesn’t have to pay license fees to a third party. Therefore, its price is lower in an absolute sense and on a per-device basis.

Product Price Per Device
Norton 360 Deluxe (includes a VPN) € 95 € 19
Kaspersky Total Security + VPN € 125 € 25
Bitdefender Total Security + VPN € 130 € 26

Norton’s Secure VPN is excellent. It’s fast, secure (OpenVPN), private (no logs), works with torrents and Netflix, and has servers in 31 countries. And on Windows, it features a kill switch, ad tracker blocking, auto-connect, and split tunnel.

It’s not perfect, however. For example, Kaspersky’s and Bitdefender’s VPN have a kill switch on each operating software, not just Windows. And both of these VPN have servers in more countries. Furthermore, you won’t find ultra-advanced tech like RAM servers at Norton, as you would at NordVPN.

However, if you want a superb VPN that comes for free with your antivirus software, there is no better option than Norton 360. Bitdefender and Kaspersky also include an excellent VPN, but these cost extra. And in the end, it’s tough to beat a great product that comes for free.

Norton Antivirus Review

Part 1: Norton Antivirus – Full Review

Norton sells two product ranges:

  • Its basic device security products, like Antivirus Plus, that don’t include a VPN for free.
  • Its comprehensive security products, called the Norton 360 range, that include an unlimited VPN for free with each antivirus package.

As you are interested in the best antivirus with a VPN, this review focuses on Norton 360. In this first part, we’ll explore the antivirus protection. And in the second part, the VPN service, called Norton Secure VPN.

Norton 360 antivirus for Windows

Norton’s anti-malware protection is exceptional. We averaged all test results by AV-Test, an IT security test lab, since October 2016. We found that Norton was the only brand to score 100%. It was followed closely by Bitdefender and Kaspersky, which both scored 99%. All other brands trailed further behind.

Of course, modern-day antivirus programs do far more than malware protection. And Norton’s feature list is a testament to this. On Windows, Norton 360 offers the following “core” features:

  • Anti-malware: Run a quick, complete, or custom scan.
  • Web protection: Block malicious websites via the Safe Web extension.
  • Cloud backup: Back up your most important files in secure cloud storage.
  • Firewall: Monitor data flow and block unauthorized activity
  • Password manager: Create, store, and auto-fill unique passwords.
  • Parental controls: Monitor and protect your kids online.
  • Unlimited VPN: Become anonymous online.
  • Privacy monitor: Scan data brokers for your personal information.
  • Webcam protection: Prevent unauthorized access to your webcam.
  • Dark web monitor: Scan the dark web for your personal information.
  • LifeLock identity theft protection: Discover and restore identity theft.

And once you dive into the settings, you can find additional “bonus” security features, like the power eraser, diagnostic reports, safe search, start-up manager, disk optimizer to free up system resources, and online banking protection via the secure browser.

It’s important to know that Norton 360 is a very complete antivirus suite, and that all its features are of very high quality too. This might seem obvious, but should not be taken for granted. Examples of the opposite are plentiful:

  • Bitdefender’s password manager is a Windows-only product and does not support other operating software, making it useless.
  • Kaspersky’s and Bitdefender’s VPN cost extra, even if you buy their high-end Total Security packages.
  • Panda doesn’t include its full parental controls for free, even in their most high-end product, Panda Dome Premium.
  • McAfee includes its VPN in its Total Protection and LiveSafe products, but it has a deplorable privacy policy, and doesn’t work on macOS.

At Norton, by contrast, all security features are included for free. And more importantly, each works very well too. Of course, one would expect that a superior product also costs more. And in principle, this is true. Norton 360 Deluxe is more expensive than, for instance, Bitdefender Total Security.

However, remember that Norton 360 includes a VPN with unlimited data, which Bitdefender doesn’t. So, if you combine the cost of Bitdefender Total Security and Bitdefender Premium VPN, its VPN without a data limit, the price advantage shifts to Norton:

Product Price Per Device
Norton 360 Deluxe (includes a VPN) € 95 € 19
Kaspersky Total Security + VPN € 125 € 25
Bitdefender Total Security + VPN € 130 € 26

We therefore believe that, due its superior features and lower price, Norton is the best full-featured antivirus for Windows PCs.

Norton 360 antivirus for Mac

Although most antivirus programs on macOS are feature-limited compared to their versions on Windows, that is not the case with Norton. Only the cloud backup, parental controls, and webcam protection didn’t make their way to Mac. Most importantly, the unlimited VPN did.

On macOS, Norton offers:

  • Anti-malware: Run a quick, complete, or custom scan.
  • Web protection: Block dangerous websites via the Safe Web extension.
  • Firewall: Monitor data flow and block unauthorized activity.
  • Password manager: Create, store, and auto-fill unique passwords.
  • Unlimited VPN: Become anonymous online.
  • Privacy monitor: Scan data brokers for your personal information.
  • Dark web monitor: Scan the dark web for your personal information.
  • LifeLock identity theft protection: Discover and restore identity theft.

To grasp how complete this feature set is, consider that no competitor we have tested, except for Intego, includes a full firewall on macOS. Let alone an unlimited VPN or password manager. This makes Norton’s offering for Mac considerably more comprehensive than that of Bitdefender and Kaspersky.

That does mean, however, that Norton charges a higher price for its protection on Mac. However, it also includes an unlimited VPN at that price, which the others don’t. So if you compare apples to apples, and include the cost of the unlimited VPN, Norton is competitively priced, even though its protection is more complete:

Product Price
Norton 360 Standard (includes a VPN) € 75
Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac + VPN € 75
Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac + VPN € 90

Therefore, we believe that Norton 360 is, with some distance, the best antivirus software for Mac.

Norton 360 antivirus for Android

Norton mobile security for Android is a complete security suite and, once again, includes a VPN for free. Kaspersky is the only antivirus program we tested that comes close to offering such a full product on Android. However, Kaspersky does not include an unlimited VPN for free.

On Android, Norton offers:

  • App security: Scan your apps for malicious ones.
  • Internet security: Scan websites for phishing and malware.
  • Wi-Fi security: Scan your Wi-Fi network for security flaws.
  • Device security: Scan your device for vulnerabilities.
  • SMS security: Scan text messages for phishing links.
  • Unlimited VPN: Become anonymous online.
  • Ad tracker blocking: Stop ads from following you around the web.
  • Password manager: Create, store, and auto-fill unique passwords.
  • Dark web monitor: Scan the dark web for your personal information

A minor downside is that the features are split across several apps, as with most antivirus providers. For example, in Norton’s case, the password manager and dark web monitor are separate apps from the main app.

As Norton includes a password manager and unlimited VPN, it is more expensive than Bitdefender and Kaspersky. But once you include the cost unlimited VPN, which is a separate purchase at Bitdefender and Kaspersky, that is no longer the case:

Product Price
Norton Mobile Security (includes a VPN) € 35
Kaspersky Internet Security for Android + VPN € 40
Bitdefender Mobile Security + VPN € 60

We believe that Norton is the best antivirus software for Android, but Kaspersky comes in at a very close second.

Norton 360 antivirus for iOS

Anti-malware, the core of antivirus technology, doesn’t exist on iOS. On Apple’s mobile operating system, all apps live in a sandbox. That means they can’t infect or scan the entire device, eliminating the threat of malware and the need for anti-malware.

So, instead, great mobile security apps, like Norton 360, focus on online privacy and identity theft protection on iOS. For example, Norton offers:

  • Wi-Fi security: Scan your Wi-Fi network for security flaws.
  • Device security: Check whether there are updates for iOS.
  • Web protection: Scan websites for malware and phishing attacks.
  • Dark web monitoring: Scan the dark web for your personal information.
  • SMS security: Scan text messages for phishing links.
  • Unlimited VPN: Become anonymous online.
  • Password manager: Create, store, and auto-fill unique passwords.

But keep in mind that as on Android, the dark web monitoring and password manager are separate apps, which is a minor annoyance.

Cynics might say that Norton 360 on iOS is a VPN with bonus features. And they would be right. But to be fair, considering the competition, that still makes it the best antivirus software for iOS.

For even more details, read our in-depth review of Norton 360 Deluxe 2022.

Norton VPN Review

Part 2: Norton VPN – Full Review

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) hides your real IP address and encrypts your internet connection. This has the benefits of making you anonymous online, increasing your safety on public Wi-Fi networks, allowing you to avoid censorship, and enabling you to stream foreign Netflix movies.

Let’s explore whether Norton can compete with the best VPN services.

Speed

We tested Norton Secure VPN on a 300 Mbps internet connection in Europe. We connected to a local VPN server, tested the download speed three times, and averaged the results. We did the same while connected to a US-based VPN server to test the trans-Atlantic download speed. These are the results:

  • Local download speed: 264.0 Mbps (12.2% slowdown)
  • US download speed: 274.3 Mbps (8.8% slowdown)

Fast VPN tend to slow your internet connection down by about 5% to 15%, and Norton sits precisely in that range. So no problems here.

Security

Norton uses the most secure 256 encryption standard, the open-source and highly secure OpenVPN protocol on Windows, Mac, and Android, and the less secure IPsec on iOS.

Although Norton doesn’t include the most advanced security features, like Double VPN, Onion over VPN, or the use of RAM servers, it certainly has a few.

On Windows, Norton’s VPN includes the following:

  • Auto-connect: Automatically connect the VPN when the computer starts up or wakes from sleep mode.
  • Auto VPN: The VPN will automatically activate on insecure or compromised Wi-Fi networks and turn off on secure networks.
  • Kill switch: Automatically block the internet connection if the VPN unexpectedly disconnects.
  • Ad tracker blocking: Stop advertisers from tracking you online.
  • Split tunnel: Determine which apps to exclude from the VPN connection.

Sadly, the kill switch and split tunnel haven’t made their way to other operating systems yet. Instead, on Android and iOS, there is auto VPN and ad tracker blocking. And on macOS, there is only ad tracker blocking.

Data Leaks

During the IP, WebRTC, and DNS leak protection tests, our data remained hidden. So we couldn’t uncover any leaks at Norton.

Privacy

Norton’s privacy policy is not 100% no-logs, although it is close. Its website states that it may collect your IP address, device name and type, OS version, and aggregate bandwidth usage. This is certainly more than we would like, but not uncommon for a VPN provider to collect to improve its service.

What matters more is that Norton does not collect what you do online. In their own words: “Norton Secure VPN does not log information about where you go on the internet.”

So in short: Norton does not track you online.

Servers

Norton has servers in 31 countries, which isn’t a significant number. For instance, Bitdefender has servers in 48 countries, Kaspersky in 54, Surfshark in 62, and CyberGhost in 92. But Norton includes the essentials:

  • Africa: South Africa.
  • Americas: Brazil, Canada, Mexico, United States.
  • Asia: Hong Kong, India, Israel, Japan, Singapore.
  • Europe: Many
  • Oceania: Australia, New Zealand.

Although this is not a substantial amount, its server network still covers the globe. However, what would be helpful is to add a few city locations in big countries like the USA. For example, if one distinguishes between servers in Germany and France, it makes sense to do the same between servers in Los Angeles and New York, which are much further apart.

Netflix and torrents

In our tests, Netflix streamed perfectly on Norton’s European and US servers. And although in the past Norton did not allow you to download torrents, it does now on servers in certain regions. So when Norton detects that you download torrents, it will prompt you to change servers to a region that allows it.

China and censorship

Although we have been unable to test it ourselves, it is often claimed that Norton is not a reliable VPN service in China due to its lack of obfuscation settings. For the same reason, it might be wise to use a different VPN in other highly censored countries too, like Russia and Turkey.

For even more details, read our in-depth review of Norton Secure VPN.

BitDefender Antivirus Review

Bitdefender Antivirus

Windows, macOS, Android & iOS

  • Device Security 100% 100%
  • Online Privacy 96% 96%

Bitdefender’s Antivirus with VPN – Review Summary

Bitdefender offers excellent protection at a low price. Its security features are both extensive and capable. Its anti-malware, anti-ransomware, firewall, vulnerability scan, anti-tracker, and secure browser, are all outstanding. However, its password manager and parental controls can’t match Norton.

Bitdefender includes a free VPN, limited to 200 MB/day, with all its antivirus packages. That is enough to play 5 minutes of YouTube videos at 720p or open 100 web pages. So you won’t be able to leave the VPN on all day, but it will allow for a fair amount of secure browsing.

Bitdefender’s unlimited VPN, called Premium VPN, is excellent. Of all the VPN offered by antivirus brands, it is our favorite. Although you won’t find ultra-advanced tech like RAM Servers or Onion over VPN, Bitdefender isn’t just a basic on and off button either.

It is fast, secure (kill switch on every device), private (no logs), has servers in 48 countries, and works with torrents and Netflix. And in contrast to many VPN included with antivirus software, it has a range of advanced features like split tunneling, auto-connect, and auto-start.

The only downside to Bitdefender’s unlimited VPN is the price. Where it costs € 50 per year, Norton’s VPN is free. So once you combine the cost of the antivirus software and the VPN, Bitdefender becomes more expensive than Norton, even though Norton is a superior security suite, in our opinion.

Product Price Per Device
Norton 360 Deluxe (includes a VPN) € 95 € 19
Kaspersky Total Security + VPN € 125 € 25
Bitdefender Total Security + VPN € 130 € 26

So if you are looking for a full-featured security suite, with an unlimited VPN, we recommend Norton 360. But if you are looking for an affordable antivirus solution with a VPN limited to 200 MB/day, then Bitdefender is the best option for you.

Bitdefender Antivirus Review

Part 1: Bitdefender Antivirus – Full Review

With the VPN in mind, one can divide Bitdefender’s antivirus software into two groups:

  • The core product range includes a free VPN limited to 200 MB/day. These are Bitdefender Antivirus Plus, Internet Security, and Total Security.
  • The premium product range includes the paid VPN with unlimited bandwidth. Currently, this only comprises Bitdefender Premium Security.

As we believe Bitdefender Premium Security is too expensive, and Bitdefender Antivirus Plus too basic, this review will focus on Bitdefender Internet Security and Total Security.

This first part of the review will dissect the antivirus programs, whereas the second part will focus entirely on its VPN. As the free version of the VPN is too limited, we’ll analyze the paid version, which costs € 50 or $ 50 per year.

Bitdefender antivirus for Windows

We like Bitdefender’s antivirus programs on Windows. The user interface is excellent, and the protection is complete. For example, if you chose Bitdefender Internet Security or Total Security, the feature set would include:

  • Antivirus: Scan for viruses, trojans, keyloggers, and other malware.
  • Advanced threat detection: Behavioral analysis for zero-day attacks.
  • Online threat prevention: Prevent phishing and fraud by websites.
  • Vulnerability scan: Scan the operating system, apps, and network.
  • Firewall: Monitor and customize connections that your apps make.
  • Ransomware remediation: Restore files encrypted by ransomware.
  • Anti-spam: Customize anti-spam for Outlook and Thunderbird.
  • Safepay: Open a secure browser for extra online banking protection.
  • VPN: Become anonymous online. The free version has a 200 MB/day limit.
  • Password manager: Create, store, and auto-fill highly secure passwords.
  • Video and audio protection: Manage audio and webcam connections.
  • Anti-tracker: Remove tracking cookies via this browser extension.
  • Parental advisor: Monitor the digital activities of your kids.
  • Anti-theft: Locate and wipe your devices remotely.
  • One-click optimizer: Clean up your hard drive and browsers.
  • Data protection/file shredder: Permanently remove files.

It’s an impressive set of security features. Especially the ransomware protection is something few other antivirus providers offer. On top of that, Bitdefender offers exceptional anti-malware protection.

In the anti-malware trials by AV-Test, an IT security test lab, Bitdefender’s average score of all tests since October 2016 was 99%, tied with Kaspersky, only 1% behind Norton, and well ahead of Avast, Avira, AVG, and McAfee.

Of course, you have to remember that Bitdefender’s free VPN is limited to 200 MB/day. 200 MB gets you about 5 minutes on YouTube at 720p or allows you to open 100 web pages. So enough for some surfing, but not streaming.

If you are looking for affordable “set it and forget it” antivirus software for Windows, and a VPN with a 200 MB/day data limit will suffice, we believe Bitdefender Internet Security is your best option.

If you want to protect other operating software too, Bitdefender Total Security will be required, as it allows you to install the software on Android, iOS, and Mac too.

However, if you are looking for a full-featured security suite for all operating systems, with an unlimited VPN, we believe that Norton 360 Deluxe is the best option for two reasons:

Price: Bitdefender’s unlimited VPN costs € 50,00 per year. Norton’s is free. So, if you include the unlimited VPN, Bitdefender’s total price becomes too high compared to Norton.

Product Price Per Device
Norton 360 Deluxe (includes a VPN) € 95 € 19
Kaspersky Total Security + VPN € 125 € 25
Bitdefender Total Security + VPN € 130 € 26

Features: Bitdefender’s password manager is Windows-only. In a day and age where everyone has a smartphone, passwords need to be effortlessly accessible on Android, iOS, and macOS too. By contrast, Norton’s password manager is for all OS. On top of that, Bitdefender’s parental controls aren’t great, and Norton’s are superior.

That said, there are plenty of users who don’t use a password manager or parental controls. If that includes you, and if a 200 MB/day data limit will be enough, Bitdefender Internet Security is an excellent choice for Windows, and Bitdefender Total Security for multiple operating software.

Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac

Bitdefender’s antivirus for Mac is better than most antivirus for macOS but remains a modest solution compared to its offering on Windows. It includes:

  • Anti-malware: Run a quick, complete, or custom scan.
  • Quarantine: See the files that have been flagged as malicious software.
  • TrafficLight: Add anti-phishing protection with the browser extension.
  • Safe files: Add ransomware protection to your most sensitive files.
  • Time machine protection: Protect backups from unauthorized changes.
  • VPN: Become anonymous online. The free version has a 200 MB/day limit.
  • Anti-tracker: Remove tracking cookies via this browser extension.

What’s excellent about Bitdefender’s antivirus for Mac, is its attractive price. It’s cheaper than both the offerings at Kaspersky and Norton. But to be fair, of the three, it also offers the least complete protection.

That said, once you include the price of Bitdefender’s unlimited VPN, that price advantage shifts to Norton. On top of that, Norton offers a firewall and password manager on macOS, which Bitdefender doesn’t.

Product Price
Norton 360 Standard (includes a VPN) € 75
Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac + VPN € 75
Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac + VPN € 90

As on Windows, we would argue that Bitdefender antivirus for Mac is a great affordable solution with a VPN limited to 200 MB/day. But if you want a full-featured antivirus suite with an unlimited VPN, we recommend Norton.

Bitdefender antivirus for Android

We aren’t huge fans of Bitdefender’s design on Android. Its user interface on Windows and Mac is far sleeker. Nonetheless, it is a complete security app:

  • Malware scanner: Scan your apps for malicious software.
  • Web protection: Scan your internet traffic for malicious intent.
  • Scam alert: Monitor text messages for infected links and phishing.
  • VPN: Become anonymous online. The free version has a 200 MB/day limit.
  • Anti-theft: Remotely locate, lock, and wipe the hard drive of your phone.
  • Account privacy: Check whether your data was compromised in a hack.
  • App lock: Lock apps with an extra pin code or biometrics scan.

Bitdefender Mobile Security for Android does not include a password manager and unlimited VPN as Norton does. However, its price is a big advantage. At € 10, it’s a bit cheaper than Kaspersky at € 15, and significantly more affordable than Norton at € 35.

However, Norton includes an unlimited VPN. So once you factor in the cost of the unlimited VPN at Bitdefender and Kaspersky, the story changes:

Product Price
Norton Mobile Security (includes a VPN) € 35
Kaspersky Internet Security for Android + VPN € 40
Bitdefender Mobile Security + VPN € 60

So it’s up to you: If you need a VPN infrequently, and 200 MB/day will suffice, then Bitdefender Mobile Security for Android is a great, affordable option.

But if you spend a lot of time on public Wi-Fi networks or want to have a VPN on all the time, 200 MB/day will not cut it. In that case, you can either buy the full VPN at Bitdefender separately, which is expensive. Or you can buy Norton mobile security for Android, which includes an unlimited VPN.

Bitdefender antivirus for iOS

iOS is an incredibly safe operating system and doesn’t require anti-malware. So Bitdefender’s feature set is on the minimal side for Apple’s mobile OS:

  • Web protection: Scan your internet traffic for malicious intent.
  • VPN: Become anonymous online. The free version has a 200 MB/day limit.
  • Account privacy: Check whether your data was compromised.

Although that covers the basics, we wouldn’t recommend using Bitdefender Mobile Security for iOS, as the web protection feature and the VPN can’t be active simultaneously. As a reason, Bitdefender states that both parts rely on VPN tech.

However, from a user perspective, it’s confusing when a security app has three features and two can’t be active simultaneously. It makes you choose between safe browsing (web protection) and anonymous browsing (VPN), which is an awkward decision to make.

So for iOS, we don’t recommend Bitdefender. Norton is much better.

For even more, read our in-depth review of Bitdefender Total Security 2022.

Bitdefender Total Security - VPN

Part 2: Bitdefender VPN – Full Review

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) masks your IP address and encrypts your internet connection. In doing so, it grants you anonymity online, increases your security on unsafe Wi-Fi networks, enables you to avoid online censorship, and allows you to watch Netflix movies that are unavailable in your country.

As you search for the best antivirus with VPN protection, you are probably already aware of this. So let’s explore how good Bitdefender’s Premium VPN is. To be clear: We tested Bitdefender’s paid VPN with unlimited bandwidth, not the free VPN with a data limit of 200 MB/day.

Speed

We tested Bitdefender’s VPN on a 300 Mbps internet connection in Europe. We tested the download speed three times on a local European server and three times while connected to a US-based server. These were the results:

  • Local download speed: 270.6 Mbps (8.6% slowdown)
  • US download speed: 253.8 Mbps (14.2% slowdown)

As a rule of thumb, a fast VPN service slows your download speed by about 5% to 15%. So Bitdefender’s VPN sits precisely in that range and can be considered a high-speed VPN.

Security

Like Kaspersky and Panda, Bitdefender licenses its VPN technology from Aura, which owns multiple VPN, including Hotspot Shield, Betternet, and UltraVPN. Therefore, Bitdefender uses the Hydra VPN protocol with AES-256 encryption, which is Aura’s proprietary technology.

It’s considered a safe and ultra-fast protocol but isn’t open-source like OpenVPN. Therefore, it isn’t easy to know how secure it is. However, there are no known security flaws in the protocol at the time of writing.

Bitdefender’s VPN does not apply the most advanced security features like Double VPN, Onion over VPN, or RAM servers. But in truth, even most standalone VPN providers don’t.

Compared to other VPN services sold by antivirus brands, Bitdefender is undoubtedly the most advanced. It even has a kill switch on Mac, which its technology partner Hotspot Shield doesn’t.

Bitdefender’s VPN includes the following security features:

  • Kill switch: It will block your internet connection if the VPN should fail. It is available on each operating system. By comparison, Norton’s VPN only has a kill switch on Windows. And Panda’s VPN doesn’t have one at all. Only Kaspersky also offers a kill switch on each OS.
  • Split tunneling: It allows specific websites to bypass the secure VPN tunnel. The feature is available on Windows, Android, and iOS, not Mac. And on Android, you can also select apps to bypass the VPN tunnel.
  • Start-Up: You can set the VPN to connect automatically when you start your computer. It is available on Windows and Mac, not the mobile OS.
  • Auto-Connect: With this feature, you can trigger the VPN to automatically connect when a particular event happens.
    • On all operating software, you can set the VPN to automatically connect when you use public Wi-Fi networks.
    • On Windows and Mac, you can also set the VPN to auto-connect when using a P2P network to download torrents.
    • Only on Windows can you select apps, websites, and website categories (like dating, file sharing, payments, and more) to automatically start the VPN connection.

Although some standalone VPN, like NordVPN, are still more advanced, Bitdefender’s VPN isn’t a basic on and off button anymore either. By offering a kill switch on each operating software, it protects your privacy better than many standalone VPN services.

Data Leaks

Bitdefender did not leak any data during our IP, WebRTC, and DNS leak protection tests.

Privacy

Bitdefender has a direct link to its privacy policy from within the VPN app, which inspires confidence. Chapter 7.3, which is about the VPN, states the following:

“(…) we collect for this service only randomly generated or hashed user and device IDs, IP addresses (…) we use Aura as data processor (…). We do not store any details regarding your location or online activity nor do we share them with other entities.

So Bitdefender does not track what you do online.

But what about Aura? As it uses Aura as its data processor, we need to check its privacy policy too:

Aura does not record your VPN browsing activities in any way that can be associated back to you. When you use a VPN connection, we do not store any information that identifies what you browse, view, or do online via that VPN connection.

All in all, no need to worry. You’ll be anonymous when using Bitdefender’s VPN service.

Servers

Bitdefender has VPN servers in 48 countries, more than Norton’s 31 and slightly less than Kaspersky’s 54. Bitdefender’s regions include:

  • Africa: Egypt, South Africa.
  • Americas: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, the USA.
  • Asia: Many
  • Europe: Many
  • Oceania: Australia, New Zealand.

Sadly, there is no option to select servers on a city-level in big countries, like the USA.

Netflix and torrents

In our tests, Bitdefender streamed Netflix perfectly and allowed us to download torrents.

China and censorship

Hotspot Shield, Bitdefender’s VPN technology provider, is not known to work flawlessly in China. So although we have not been able to test it ourselves, we wouldn’t recommend relying on Bitdefender’s VPN there.

For more information, please read our review on Bitdefender Premium VPN.

Kaspersky Antivirus Review

Kaspersky Antivirus

Windows, macOS, Android & iOS

  • Device Security 100% 100%
  • Online Privacy 90% 90%

Kaspersky’s Antivirus with VPN – Review Summary

Kaspersky builds exceptional security software. From its anti-malware to its firewall, browser extensions, and webcam protection, it all works very well. Kaspersky is more expensive than Bitdefender. But some features, like the password manager and parental controls, are also better.

Kaspersky’s free VPN has a data limit of 300 MB/day, which is more generous than Bitdefender’s 200 MB/day. To put that into perspective, 300 MB will enable you to watch 7,5 minutes on YouTube at 720p, or open 150 web pages, before the data limit is reached.

Kaspersky’s unlimited VPN costs extra. Although at € 25 per year, it is cheaper than Bitdefender’s unlimited VPN at € 50 per year. However, when you add up the price of the antivirus software and VPN service, neither brand can compete with Norton.

Product Price Per Device
Norton 360 Deluxe (includes a VPN) € 95 € 19
Kaspersky Total Security + VPN € 125 € 25
Bitdefender Total Security + VPN € 130 € 26

We found Kaspersky’s VPN to be beautifully designed and effective. Don’t expect ultra-advanced tech like RAM servers or Onion over VPN, like at NordVPN. But Kaspersky’s VPN isn’t just an on and off button either.

It’s fast, has servers in 54 countries, and works with torrents and Netflix. On top of that, it has a range of advanced protection features, like a kill switch on each operating software (Norton only has one on Windows) and several auto-connect and smart protection features.

It’s too bad that Kaspersky’s VPN privacy policy is missing and that you are automatically opted-in for its marketing data collection. Although you can opt out, we were disappointed to find out that the setting was on by default. After all, a VPN is often used to avoid marketing firms.

That’s why, in this list, Kaspersky ends in place three.

Kaspersky Antivirus Review

Part 1: Kaspersky Antivirus – Full Review

Kaspersky’s core product range consists of Kaspersky Anti-Virus, Internet Security, and Total Security. These products include a free version of the VPN, with a 300 MB/day data limit. However, the unlimited VPN requires a separate subscription costing € 25 or $ 30 per year.

This first part of the review will focus on Kaspersky Internet Security and Total Security, as we consider Kaspersky Anti-Virus too basic.

The second part of the review will focus on Kaspersky Secure VPN, the paid version of the VPN.

Kaspersky antivirus for Windows

We’re big fans of both Kaspersky Internet Security and Total Security. The software are well designed, and the feature set is extensive:

  • Internal scan: Scan for worms, spyware, rootkits, and other malware.
  • External scan: Scan external drives, like a hard disk or USB drive.
  • Vulnerability scan: Scan your device for security risks.
  • Firewall: Customize the data flow between your device and a network.
  • Kaspersky protection: A browser extension to secure banking and privacy.
  • Password manager: Create, store, and auto-fill secure passwords.
  • Parental controls: Monitor and protect your children online.
  • VPN: Become anonymous online. The free version has a 300 MB/day limit.
  • Webcam protection: Block programs from accessing your webcam.
  • Private browsing: Block and remove tracking cookies in your browser.
  • Backup: Backup files to a cloud storage provider like Dropbox.
  • File encryption: Lock sensitive files in a secure vault.
  • File shredder: Permanently delete files via advanced protocols.

It’s a complete set of protection features. Kaspersky Internet Security includes all except the file encryption, password manager, and GPS locator. For those, you will have to upgrade to Total Security. However, we believe the slight premium is worth it to access the outstanding password manager.

Kasperksy’s anti-malware is excellent. When we averaged all malware protection test scores since October 2016 by AV-Test, an IT security test lab, Kaspersky scored 99%. This puts it on par with Bitdefender, and only 1% behind Norton, the only brand with a perfect 100% score. All other brands, like Avast, Avira, AVG, and McAfee, trailed with 98% or lower.

Remember that the free VPN has a data limit of 300 MB/day, which is more generous than Bitdefender’s 200 MB/day. To put that in perspective, 300 MB will enable you to watch 7,5 minutes on YouTube at 702p, or open 150 web pages, before the data limit is reached. So it is enough to surf the web but not to stream movies or provide all-day protection.

We believe this makes Kaspersky Internet Security and Total Security great options for those who want excellent antivirus protection and only need to use the VPN sporadically. For instance, only on public Wi-Fi. However, although we like Kaspersky’s products, we prefer Bitdefender and Norton for their value for money:

  • If the free VPN with its data limit is enough for you, we believe Bitdefender Internet Security is your best bet. It is cheaper than Kaspersky’s Internet Security while offering similarly excellent protection.
  • If you want an unlimited VPN, we think Norton 360 Deluxe is the best full-featured antivirus suite. It costs the same as Kaspersky Total Security but includes an unlimited VPN.

If you combine the cost of Kaspersky Total Security and its VPN, it becomes expensive, which is true for Bitdefender too. Compared to both, Norton 360 Deluxe looks affordable.

Product Price Per Device
Norton 360 Deluxe (includes a VPN) € 95 € 19
Kaspersky Total Security + VPN € 125 € 25
Bitdefender Total Security + VPN € 130 € 26

That said, Kaspersky’s antivirus software and VPN are well-designed and engineered products. So if you trust the brand, and aren’t put off by the comparatively higher price, then Kaspersky is a great choice.

Kaspersky antivirus for Mac

Kaspersky’s security software for Mac is called Internet Security, not antivirus like at Bitdefender. This choice is fitting as Kaspersky’s protection for macOS offers more online features:

  • Anti-malware scan: Run a quick, complete, or custom malware scan.
  • Block webcam: Block all access to the webcam.
  • VPN: Become anonymous online. The free version has a 200 MB/day limit.
  • Safe Kids: Monitor and protect your children online.
  • Network attack blocker: Scan and block inbound data flow.
  • Kaspersky security browser: An incredibly advanced browser extension.
    • Web anti-virus: Scan incoming data and notify online threats.
    • Website tracking: Block tracking cookies.
    • Safe money: Check the authenticity of banking websites.
    • URL advisor: Check links for safety before you click on them.
    • Onscreen keyboard: Avoid keyloggers with a digital keyboard.

We’re huge fans of the browser extension that allows you to separately (de-)activate all five security settings. It’s excellent.

Compared to Norton, however, Kaspersky misses a few features on Mac. For example, it includes no password manager, and the network attack blocker is not a full-featured firewall, both of which Norton offers.

From a price point, Kaspersky falls between Norton and Bitdefender, which is fair considering its feature set. But once you add the price of the unlimited VPN, that price advantage shifts to Norton:

Product Price
Norton 360 Standard (includes a VPN) € 75
Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac + VPN € 75
Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac + VPN € 90

So on Mac, both Bitdefender and Kaspersky offer excellent protection at their relative price points. And both include a free VPN with a data limit. If that is enough for you, either option will serve you well.

However, if you want a full-featured security suite for your Macbook with an unlimited VPN, Norton 360 is the way to go. It’s more complete, due to its password manager and firewall, and its price is lower when you count the VPN cost at Kaspersky and Bitdefender.

Kaspersky antivirus for Android

For Android, Kaspersky produces an exceptional antivirus app. In fact, if it would include an unlimited VPN as Norton does, it would probably be our favorite. Mainly because Kaspersky still has anti-theft tools, which Norton doesn’t. On Android, Kasperksy’s complete feature set includes:

  • Scan: Run a quick, complete, or custom scan.
  • Call filter: Block phone calls from specific numbers.
  • Anti-theft: Lock, locate, and wipe your phone remotely.
  • App lock: Set a four-digit code on sensitive apps.
  • Safe messaging: Check links in text messages for phishing links.
  • Internet protection: Block dangerous websites known for fraud.
  • Data leak checker: Monitor the dark web for your personal data.
  • Weak settings scan: Check your device for vulnerable security settings.
  • My apps: Check the permission settings of your apps.

Separately, you can download Kaspersky’s free VPN app, with a data limit of 200 MB/day. Note that this is lower than the 300 MB/day limit if you buy Kaspersky Anti-Virus, Internet Security, or Total Security.

Considering its price, at € 15, Kaspersky Internet Security for Android offers a lot of value for money. Bitdefender Mobile Security for Android is slightly cheaper, at € 10, but also somewhat less complete. Nevertheless, both are considerably cheaper than Norton at € 35.

However, if you want an unlimited VPN, you’ll have to buy that separately at Bitdefender and Kaspersky, which changes the price story:

Product Price
Norton Mobile Security (includes a VPN) € 35
Kaspersky Internet Security for Android + VPN € 40
Bitdefender Mobile Security + VPN € 60

So if a VPN with a limit of 200 MB/day is enough for you, Kasperksy Internet Security for Android is a great option. If, however, you want an unlimited VPN, then Norton mobile security offers more value for money.

Kaspersky antivirus for iOS

Kaspersky does not have a dedicated security app for iOS. Instead, you can buy the parental controls, password manager, and VPN app for it. You would also have access to those if you purchased Kaspersky Total Security. Although even then, the VPN would remain limited to 300 MB/day.

The unlimited VPN would remain a paid extra even if you bought Kaspersky’s most expensive security suite; Total Security.

For more details, please read our full review on Kaspersky Internet Security.

Kaspersky VPN Review

Part 2: Kaspersky VPN – Full Review

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) hides your IP address and encrypts your internet connection. This provides you with anonymity online, security on public Wi-Fi networks, the freedom to circumvent online censorship, and the ability to unblock geo-restricted content like streaming services.

But as you search for the best antivirus program with a VPN package, we guess this is old news to you. So let’s explore Kaspersky Secure VPN, the paid and unlimited version of the VPN, to find out how good it is.

Speed

We tested Kaspersky Secure VPN on a 300 Mbps connection in Europe. We tested the download speed three times while connected to a local European VPN server and three times while connected to a VPN server in the US. This is what we found:

  • Local download speed: 298.0 Mbps (2.0% slowdown)
  • US download speed: 296.7 Mbps (2.4% slowdown)

In general, high-speed VPN have a negative speed impact of about 5% to 15%. Kaspersky’s mere 2% impact is therefore exceptional. This is thanks to its Hydra protocol, which it licenses from Aura.

Curiously, Bitdefender uses the same protocol but didn’t reach the same speeds in our test. But that can depend on a range of factors. For instance, the number of users connected to the server or our local connection. So don’t read too much into it. All VPN in this test are lightning-fast.

Security

Kaspersky uses the Hydra VPN protocol with 256-AES encryption standard. It licenses this technology from Aura, a company that owns multiple VPN, such as Hotspot Shield and Betternet.

Because the Hydra protocol is a proprietary technology of Aura and not an open-source technology like the OpenVPN protocol, it’s tough to know what goes on under the hood. But at the time of writing, there are no know security vulnerabilities.

Kaspersky’s VPN does not use the most advanced VPN tech like RAM servers, Double VPN, or Onion over VPN, but enough to keep most users happy:

  • Auto-Start and Auto-Connect: You can have the VPN start automatically and connect when you turn on your Windows PC.
  • Kill Switch: A kill switch feature will block your internet connection if the VPN should fail. It is available on each operating system. By comparison, Norton’s VPN only has a kill switch on Windows. And Panda’s VPN doesn’t have one at all. Only Bitdefender also offers a kill switch on each OS.
  • Smart Protection: You can let the VPN connect automatically (or request to connect) when you sign in to a public Wi-Fi network.
  • Website Protection: You can specify websites or website categories that automatically start the VPN. On Android, you can also select apps that automatically create a VPN connection.

Kaspersky’s VPN isn’t a basic on and off button anymore. Instead, by offering a kill switch on each operating software, it protects your privacy better than many standalone VPN services. For instance, on Mac, Hotspot Shield doesn’t offer a kill switch.

Data Leaks

Kaspersky did not leak any data during our IP, WebRTC, and DNS leak protection tests.

Privacy

As Aura is Kaspersky’s data processor, we investigated both Kaspersky’s and Aura’s privacy policy. Aura’s privacy policy stated the following:

Aura does not record your VPN browsing activities in any way that can be associated back to you. When you use a VPN connection, we do not store any information that identifies what you browse, view, or do online via that VPN connection.

Excellent. Aura will not track what you do online.

We found Kaspersky to be less transparent. For example, its privacy policy mentions the VPN only once, so there isn’t much to learn. However, by default, you have opted into Kaspersky’s Security Network and Marketing declarations.

These are, in essence, data collection statements that you can find under settings in the app. And although you can opt-out for both, you are opted in by default, which we don’t like.

The declarations state that Kaspersky collects and processes:

  • Your Kaspersky Account ID
  • Your device type, model, and unique ID
  • Your operating software, version, and ID
  • Your geolocation
  • Your VPN session duration
  • Your choice of VPN server
  • Your Wi-Fi network, including name, IP, and DNS settings.

The declarations also state the purpose of the data collection:

  • To improve product quality
  • To offer you security solutions
  • To provide you with relevant content and ads
  • To create user groups for marketing offers and promo materials

It’s largely in line with the data that Norton collects. And neither company track what you do online. So it isn’t terrible.

However, where Norton’s clear privacy policy states that it collects that data to provide and improve its service to you, Kaspersky does so to “create user groups and marketing offers” too. That’s a big difference.

A VPN is a privacy product. It should not be used to collect user information for marketing purposes. It’s that simple. Kaspersky’s privacy policy is less terrible than that of McAfee, but its automatic opt-in policy is worse than the policies by Norton and Bitdefender.

Servers

Kaspersky has servers in 54 countries, which is more than Norton’s 31 and Bitdefender’s 48. These include:

  • Africa: Egypt, South Africa.
  • Americas: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Mexico, United States.
  • Asia: Many
  • Europe: Many
  • Oceania: Australia, New Zealand.

At the time of writing, we could select servers on a city level in Canada, the UK, and the USA. But only on macOS and Android. Unfortunately, this feature was not yet available on Windows and iOS. But we suspect it will be in the future.

Netflix and torrents

Both Netflix and the downloading via torrents (P2P) worked perfectly while we were connected to Kaspersky’s VPN servers.

China and censorship

Hotspot Shield, Kaspersky’s VPN technology provider, is not known to work perfectly in China. So although we have not been able to test it ourselves, we wouldn’t rely on Kaspersky’s VPN to function there.

Noteworthy Mentions

Due to the size of an article like this, we can’t write reviews on all the products we test. Other antivirus companies that offer VPN services are Avast, AVG, Avira, BullGuard, Intego, McAfee, Panda, and TotalAV. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are frequently asked questions from across the web.

Which antivirus is best with VPN in 2022?

Norton 360 Deluxe is the best antivirus with a VPN included.

Its anti-malware, web protection, firewall, password manager, parental controls, webcam protection, and dark web monitoring are excellent.

And its VPN is fast, secure (OpenVPN), private (no logs), and works with Netflix and torrents. On top of that, it has no data limit and is included for free with the antivirus software.

Read more about it, or see some alternatives, here at SoftwareLab.org.

Do you need an antivirus with a VPN?

You certainly need antivirus software. Not having one, is like leaving your door unlocked while you go out. The best antivirus programs will keep your devices secure, your online privacy protected, and your identity safe from theft.

A VPN restores your anonymity online and keeps you safe from hackers on public Wi-Fi networks. On top of that, it allows you to avoid online censorship and watch foreign streaming services. We believe it is a vital part of your cyber safety toolkit, and personally have a VPN on 24/7.

Read about the best antivirus with VPN at SoftwareLab.org.

Sources

Below are several sourced used to analyze the software.