Avast has been in operation for 30 years and claims to safeguard 435 million devices around the world with its award-winning security software for cyberspace. While the company’s free programs have limited capabilities but its premium offerings, including Avast Ultimate, are quite extensive. The suite includes antivirus software, VPN services, password managers and Cleanup utilities to assist users in managing their passwords, remain anonymous online, and optimize their devices.
Avast Ultimate is easy to use, and has a simple layout that clearly demarcates the different tools it offers. Its malware engine has performed well in independent lab testing it was able to identify many threats that are often not detected by other protections. Its web protection is effective, catching a lot of websites that are phishing and wikipedia reference slip through Chrome and Firefox’s default protections.
Other tools include an app lock, RAM boost, and an online scanner that scans for weaknesses. Its ransomware protection prevents third-party software from altering the way you store, delete, or lock your data until you pay. The program is available as mobile applications for Android as well as iOS. Apple’s restrictions have led to the Android version more feature-rich, however both versions feature essential security features such as malware scanning and web coverage.
Avast’s only major downside is that it collects and sends your personal data to its analytics firm, Jumpshot. This was exposed in an PCMag and Motherboard investigation in 2020. This feature is able to be disabled through the settings menu. If you are still concerned, Avast lets you set an account password that you have to enter to block the software from sharing your IP address or other information with third-party organizations.