Kaspersky Antivirus Premium 2024: Review Summary
Kaspersky is ranked #9 of 28 antivirus brands.
Kaspersky Antivirus Premium is Kaspersky’s most advanced antivirus. It has perfect anti-malware protection, no impact on the speed of your PC, all the security features you need, and an excellent price.
Buy it if you want complete protection. You will get anti-malware, anti-phishing, a firewall, a password manager, a VPN, and priority support.
Alternatively, you could consider Norton 360 Deluxe. It offers the same excellent anti-malware protection and security features, but has a deeper discount in the first year.
- Malware protection: 100%. Kaspersky detected and removed each of the 1,200 malware samples in our test.
- Speed impact: 100%. Kaspersky’s anti-malware engine is lightweight and did not slow down our test PC.
- Features: 100%. Kaspersky Antivirus Premium includes anti-malware, anti-phishing, firewall, VPN, password manager, and more.
- Price: 80%. Kaspersky Antivirus Premium has an excellent price, but Norton offers a bigger first-year discount.
Thanks to the 30-day return policy, you can try it risk-free.
|Ranking||#9 of 28|
|Operating systems||Windows, macOS, iOS, Android|
|🔥 Discount||Save 20% on Kaspersky 🔥|
Kaspersky Antivirus Premium 2024: Full Review
Kaspersky is ranked #9 of the 28 best antivirus of 2024.
In our testing, we found Kaspersky to be a robust antivirus solution with a strong scanner and valuable extras. It excels in anti-phishing, making sure you steer clear of malicious websites. The Safe Browsing feature integrates well with popular browsers, adding another layer of safety.
We especially appreciated the VPN, which offered speedy performance and torrenting support. However, we did encounter some issues with Netflix access and found it lacks split-tunneling options.
The software’s interface is user-friendly. Even if you’re not tech-savvy, you’ll find it easy to navigate, thanks to helpful tutorials and responsive support. Installation was a breeze for us; we were up and running in just 5 minutes.
Kaspersky offers three tiers: Standard, Plus, and Premium, covering up to 20 devices depending on your region. While they do have a free version, it’s not a part of their main offerings. All paid plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, giving you ample time to test its capabilities.
In our tests, Kaspersky’s malware scanner stood out with a 100% detection rate, putting it on par with giants like Norton and Bitdefender. It utilizes a virus database and cloud-based machine learning, so when it finds a suspicious file, it’s sent for further analysis to Kaspersky’s cloud.
Kaspersky offers six types of scans, but for this review, we’ll focus on the Quick Scan and Full Scan. The Quick Scan took just 3 minutes and caught about 70% of our test malware, prompting us to run a Full Scan. The Full Scan, lasting 53 minutes, identified every malware sample we had, without affecting system performance.
What we also liked was the real-time protection, which blocked all malware attempts in real-time. However, the Application Vulnerability Scan was less impressive, taking over 1 hour and not finding any issues despite known outdated software on our test system. On the plus side, Kaspersky’s built-in updater fixed these outdated applications in under 5 minutes.
So, in a nutshell, Kaspersky offers robust scanning options with excellent real-time protection, without slowing down your system. The vulnerability scan could use some improvement, but the overall performance is top-notch.
Our experience with Kaspersky’s anti-phishing capabilities was mostly positive. The multi-layered approach, which includes a Safe Browsing mode compatible with leading browsers, effectively blocked the majority of malicious sites we visited. However, Norton and Bitdefender had a slight edge in blocking all our test links.
One feature we found handy was Kaspersky’s URL Advisor, which marks safe websites with a green symbol in search results. It’s worth noting that this worked only on Firefox for us, not Chrome.
The Private Browsing feature is a plus, though we were disappointed that by default, Kaspersky and its partners can collect data. You can opt out, but we’d prefer if Kaspersky asked for user consent upon installation.
The on-screen keyboard is a standout feature, offering added protection against keyloggers. This works well in conjunction with Safe Money, Kaspersky’s secure browser designed for financial transactions. Safe Money effectively recognized banking and shopping sites in our tests, although it was slower to load compared to Bitdefender’s Safepay.
To sum it up, Kaspersky offers strong web protection with useful features like anti-tracking and an on-screen keyboard. While there are some areas for improvement, such as loading speed for Safe Money and user consent for data collection, the overall package remains compelling.
In our evaluation, Kaspersky’s firewall performed effectively, successfully blocking most exploit attacks, even those that got past Windows Defender’s default firewall. We were particularly impressed with the detailed information provided for each application connected to the internet, making it easier to trust or block them.
Advanced users will appreciate the additional features like port access detection and the ability to adjust individual packet rules. The network monitor is also a useful inclusion, especially the option to block all network activity with a single click.
That said, we found the interface somewhat confusing. While some features are accessible from the firewall menu, others are tucked away in different sections, unlike Norton, which keeps all settings in one place. Also, Mac users may be disappointed, as the Mac version only includes a network attack blocker, whereas alternatives like Intego offer a more feature-rich firewall for Mac.
In summary, Kaspersky’s firewall offers solid protection for Windows users, with advanced features for those who need them. While the interface could be more user-friendly, and the Mac version could be improved, it’s effective in blocking network intrusions right out of the box.
We tested Kaspersky’s password manager and found it to be a straightforward, secure option, especially for those just starting with password management. It uses robust 256-bit AES encryption and follows a zero-knowledge policy, ensuring only you can access your data.
The premium version offers unlimited storage, while the free version is limited to 15 passwords. Compared to Norton’s unlimited free option, Kaspersky’s free limit feels restrictive. Setup is a breeze; just remember that if you lose your master password, Kaspersky can’t help you recover it, unlike services like Dashlane or LastPass that offer recovery options.
The auto-fill and auto-save features worked seamlessly in our tests. However, it’s worth noting that auto-fill for bank cards and addresses is not available on mobile devices. Navigation is simple with everything clearly labeled, and you can organize your data into custom folders.
We liked its password generator, but missed the options for generating ‘easy to read’ or ‘easy to say’ passwords, features found in LastPass. Moreover, the password manager lacks advanced features like two-factor authentication (2FA) and encrypted cloud storage, although it does support Windows Hello for an extra layer of security.
In summary, while Kaspersky’s password manager won’t replace dedicated services like 1Password in terms of features, it’s a secure and user-friendly option for basic password management needs.
We put Kaspersky’s VPN through its paces and found it to be a solid choice, especially if you opt for Kaspersky’s Plus or Premium plans. This VPN offers a comprehensive feature set: unlimited data, a kill switch, leak protection, and smart protection that auto-engages on public networks. Plus, it supports servers in over 70 countries and offers split-tunneling to manage which apps use the VPN.
Speed tests showed a minor uptick in ping and a slight dip in upload speed, but download speed remained consistent. In practical terms, this meant we could browse as usual with the VPN active.
Another perk is its compatibility with streaming services like Netflix. If you’re a US Netflix user abroad, you can still access the US library. We found this to be an advantage over competitors like Avira’s VPN, which struggled with Netflix.
In short, Kaspersky’s VPN offers robust features and decent speed, making it a strong choice among antivirus-bundled VPNs.
Other security features
We evaluated Kaspersky’s additional features and found a mixed bag. Starting with Parental Controls, or Safe Kids, we were impressed by its broad range of capabilities, from content filtering to geofencing. The software even helps parents talk to their kids about internet safety. However, its iOS limitations and lack of comprehensive social media tracking keep it from being a one-stop solution. For Android users, it’s a powerful tool, but iPhone families might find more value in Qustodio.
Data leak checker
The Data Leak Checker is another highlight, offering dark web scanning for email leaks. While it’s a good starting point, we found it less thorough than other options, like Have I Been Pwned. It does the basics but lacks in-depth reporting, only categorizing leaks broadly as personal, banking, or activity data. Compared to Norton’s dark web monitor, which details specific compromised information, Kaspersky falls a bit short.
System cleanup tools
We took Kaspersky’s system cleanup tools for a spin and found a mix of useful features and some that need improvement. The PC Speed-Up and Hard Drive Health Monitor caught our eye for their efficiency. These tools quickly analyzed our systems and flagged issues, although they don’t guide you through fixing those issues.
However, we found gaps in other areas. The Quick Startup tool was unresponsive, and the Unused Apps feature failed to identify software we hadn’t used in months. The Weak Settings Scanner also didn’t impress us as it couldn’t identify any security vulnerabilities, contradicting Windows’ built-in tool. On the positive side, Kaspersky’s Windows Troubleshooting tool outperformed the default Windows option, identifying problems that Windows missed.
Smart home monitor
We also checked out Kaspersky’s Smart Home Monitor. It’s a basic tool that shows you which devices are connected to your network. However, it falls short of competitors like ESET, which offers vulnerability scans for connected devices. Kaspersky’s tool mainly identifies devices and their IP addresses, offering limited control beyond that.
We explored the range of Kaspersky’s additional features, and there’s a lot on offer. From webcam and microphone protection to intrusion prevention, the suite offers a fair bit of utility.
We particularly liked the intrusion prevention tool, which allows you to customize process permissions and offers insights based on its popularity among Kaspersky users. We also appreciated the stalkerware detection, alerting us to apps attempting to access sensitive data. On the privacy front, Kaspersky did well in blocking tracking elements across websites.
However, some features left us wanting. For instance, the ad blocker wasn’t as effective as we’d hoped, still letting through numerous ads during our tests. We found the Backup and Restore option to be limited in storage options, especially compared to competitors like Norton.
The Rescue Disk is a solid inclusion, helping to clean malware-infected computers at startup. The gaming mode is functional but doesn’t stand out, especially compared to Norton’s performance-boosting gaming mode.
Overall, Kaspersky offers a well-rounded suite of additional features. Although it lacks some advanced options like identity theft protection, which competitors offer, it still manages to deliver useful tools for enhancing security and privacy.
We tested Kaspersky’s mobile app on both Android and iOS, and here’s the scoop: The Android app is feature-rich, offering antivirus scanning, call blocking, real-time protection, and anti-theft features, among others. The antivirus scanner is effective, identifying and quarantining malware within minutes. The real-time protection also does its job, blocking harmful apps right from the Google Play Store.
However, when it comes to advising on apps before downloading them, competitors like Norton and Bitdefender have a slight edge. The anti-theft tools are robust, allowing you to lock, locate, and even wipe your device data. A neat addition is the capability to capture an image of whoever is using your stolen or lost device.
iOS users get fewer features—mainly basic security, parental controls, and a VPN. The VPN performance was decent; although the free version had some speed limitations, upgrading to premium removed these bottlenecks.
While the app is fairly comprehensive, it doesn’t match the depth of features offered by competitors like Avira, particularly in performance optimization and network scanning.
As for customer support, Kaspersky offers email, live chat, and phone options along with a knowledge base. We found navigating to the support features a bit cumbersome. The live chat and phone support were responsive but getting to them required filling out multiple forms. The email support was functional but less personal compared to other brands.
Plans and pricing
In the table below are the core products with their features and prices.
The prices shown are from the USA. However, most brands have different prices (and currencies) in other regions. So visit the brand’s website to see the price in our country.
Note: Kaspersky has rebranded its products. Kaspersky Anti-Virus, Kaspersky Internet Security, and Kaspersky Total Security are now Standard, Plus, and Premium. The Kaspersky Security Cloud is also no longer available.
We took a close look at Kaspersky’s pricing and plans, and here’s our take:
- Malware scanner
- Data leak checker (1 email)
- System clean-up tools
Verdict: If you need basic security for multiple devices, this plan is a good starting point. But, if you’re looking to protect just one device, competitors like Norton offer similar features at a lower price.
- All Standard features
- Password manager
- Unlimited VPN
- File shredder
- Data leak checker (up to 50 emails)
Verdict: This is the plan we recommend for most users. The inclusion of an unlimited VPN is a standout feature, rarely seen at this price point in rival products like Bitdefender.
- All Plus features
- Identity protection wallet
- Remote access detection
- Parental controls (1-year only)
- Premium support
Verdict: If you have kids, the one-year-free parental controls make this plan worth considering. However, the ‘Premium Support’ might not be a compelling addition given that Kaspersky already has decent 24/7 support options.
All plans offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can try risk-free. Kaspersky also provides a free basic antivirus option, albeit with limited features. Overall, the plans offer good value, particularly the Plus package, which strikes a balance between cost and features.
Test score comparison
Next to our own anti-malware tests, we analyze those by AV-Test. We’ve compared the results of the 10 most recent tests for Windows 10. The tests were performed by AV-Test, the German anti-malware test lab. They use three factors:
- Protection (1-6): Antivirus protection against malware attacks.
- Performance (1-6): System slowdown caused by the antivirus.
- Usability (1-6): Frequency of false alarms and disruptions.
We used their results, and this formula, to calculate the final score:
Final Score = 60% Protection + 20% Performance + 20% Usability.
Brands not listed in the table haven’t participated in the analysis by AV-Test. This is usually not a good sign. Because most reputable brands, except Panda, ESET, and Sophos, partake in the test.
We’ve compared the prices of the top antivirus products for Windows. To make it a fair comparison, we looked at what it would cost us, to protect a single Windows PC with the most essential features:
- Anti-phishing (web protection)
- Password manager
- Unlimited VPN (no data limit)
A few notes:
- Some brands are missing features, lowering their value for money.
- Prices are second-year prices in the USA, without first-year discounts.
- Prices are rounded up for readability (e.g., $99.99 becomes $100).
Brands have different prices outside the USA. See those on their website.
We’ve compared the user reviews of all antivirus brands. We’ve used the scores and review count of TrustPilot, a leading user review platform. However, take these results with a grain of salt, as some brands actively attempt to increase their ratings.
Personally, we are wary of exceptionally high scores. Especially those by brands such as TotalAV, known for aggressive marketing and sales tactics.
We consider scores between 4.0 and 4.5 good and realistic. Higher scores are dubious, and lower scores indicate that the brand might have a poor product or customer service. McAfee’s scores, for instance, are worrying.
Kaspersky is a leading cybersecurity firm, privately held with its holding company based in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1997, the company has amassed over 25 years of experience in the industry, and it protects more than 400 million individuals and 240,000 corporations across 200 countries and territories.
The company prides itself on its commitment to quality, regularly participating in independent tests to evaluate the effectiveness of its technologies against evolving threats. This has earned Kaspersky a strong presence in public TOP3 metrics and numerous awards.
At the core of Kaspersky’s operations is a team of 4,000 highly qualified specialists. They focus on developing innovative and user-friendly solutions that allow people to use technology without worrying about cybersecurity risks. The company’s portfolio is diverse, offering various security solutions that cater to a wide range of customer needs.
In terms of corporate values, Kaspersky prioritizes transparency, innovation, simplicity, and a human-centric approach. The company aims to build a safer world by adopting a “Cyber Immune” security model, which focuses on creating systems that are inherently secure. This approach is guided by the philosophy that the cost of launching a successful cyberattack should exceed its potential benefits. Eugene Kaspersky, the CEO, is a key proponent of this forward-thinking strategy.
By consistently delivering high-quality, effective solutions and maintaining a strong set of values, Kaspersky has established itself as a market leader in cybersecurity.
How we test antivirus software
Below we describe how we run our tests. For even more details, visit our blog posts on how we test antivirus software.
Anti-malware protection test
We analyze antivirus software’s capability to detect and eliminate known and unknown malware, using heuristic analysis for behavior monitoring.
We conduct in-house tests and analyze those from labs like AV-Test, SE Labs, and AV-Comparatives to determine the best malware protection.
Malware includes adware, keyloggers, ransomware, rootkits, spyware, trojans, viruses, worms, and more. Other cyber threats, usually not classified as malware, are (zero-day) exploits, hacks, identity theft, phishing attacks, scams, and social engineering.
False positives test
False positives occur when antivirus software misidentifies legitimate software, files, or websites as malicious. We rely on AV-Test’s large-scale analysis of false positives in its usability test to guide our evaluations.
System performance test
We measure the CPU load during antivirus software system scans and consider AV-Test’s performance results on the slowdown caused by antivirus software when opening websites and handling software.
We evaluate two-way firewalls that filter incoming and outgoing data and allow users to set rules to regulate data streams. We use the ShieldsUP! test to determine if the antivirus software blocks all ports.
Password manager test
We assess password managers’ ability to create, store, and autofill secure passwords, as well as additional features like two-factor authentication and biometric login.
Virtual Private Network (VPN) test
We evaluate built-in VPNs on their security, privacy, speed, compatibility with streaming services, unlimited data access, and support for peer-to-peer networks and torrent clients.
Parental control test
We examine parental control features, such as screen time rules, website/app blocking, and real-world location tracking. We test these features on a device and attempt to circumvent them, checking if the activity is accurately reported in the parental control admin.
Anti-phishing protection test
We evaluate antivirus browser extensions that block phishing sites by installing them and attempting to visit dangerous URLs.
Ransomware protection test
We assess security suites’ ability to prevent data encryption through exploit prevention and behavioral detection during ransomware attacks.
Bonus features test
We test any additional cybersecurity tools such as:
- Ad Blocker
- Dark web monitoring (identity protection)
- Email protection
- File encryption
- File shredder
- Gaming mode
- Microphone protection
- PC maintenance features
- Secure browser (hardened browser to protect your online banking)
- Secure cloud storage (cloud backup)
- Spam filter
- Startup optimizer
- Tune up tools
- Virtual keyboard
- Webcam protection
Ownership and reputation test
We analyze the trustworthiness of antivirus companies, especially concerning customer data. We read press releases, news articles, and privacy policies to determine their reputation.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are the most frequently asked questions.
Is Kaspersky a good antivirus program?
How do we test antivirus software?
We analyze the protection from malware, the performance impact on a PC, and the number of false positives. On top of that, we test various security features such as the firewall, password manager, VPN, and more.
Author: Tibor Moes
Founder & Chief Editor at SoftwareLab