Antivirus Software Comparison: Bullguard, AVG and McAfee

ByTop10.com StaffNov.08, 2018

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Bullguard vs. AVG vs. McAfee
Bullguard, AVG, and McAfee are industry leaders when it comes to antivirus software. But which is best for your personal needs? We breakdown what each software offers by performance, ease of use, features, value for money and customer support—so you can find exactly what you’re looking for.

Here’s how they rank:

1. Performance

How strong an antivirus software performs on your computer is a crucial factor to consider when shopping around. AVG, which has been providing security and antivirus services for more than 20 years, boasts higher-than-average removal and detection rates.

It runs beautifully behind the scenes, but it has been known to miss phishing scams periodically. 

BullGuard, which was founded in 2001, has an impressive list of accreditations, giving it credibility off the bat. However, it has been known to generate false positives, and scored poorly on anti-phishing and spam protection.

McAfee also showed above-average performance levels, running imperceptibly (stops scanning while another program is running), stopping every virus tested (including over 100 zero-day viruses types), and flawlessly preventing thousands of known malware attacks. McAfee flags safe files and false positives but incorporates signature files as additional malware protection. 

In terms of performance, McAfee is the winner, as it detects phishing scams and rarely generates false positives.

Winner: McAfee

2. Ease of Use

All 3 products are pretty easy to install, run, adjust, and change settings. However with that said, McAfee is simpler to install than BullGuard, and with AVG you are required to use 2 separate installers.

BullGuard’s entire design is built on simplicity and minimalism, but, ironically, some people find this more complicated than useful. McAfee is generally considered the simplest antivirus software on the market and representatives are always available to help you with 24/7 customer support.

While AVG is not as userfriendly as the others, it has a scale-tipping edge when it comes to computers and devices that have already been corrupted. While they all do well on a clean slate, AVG takes the lead by being able to operate and scan more efficiently even on infected devices. Plus, AVG is simple to download and offers multiple types of protection, including email, firewall and identity protection.

Winner: AVG

3. Features

Each of these antivirus software services provide the basics that you would expect for any computer protection, including firewall, system monitoring, and auto updates.

What really sets these apart from the rest are the variety of useful features. AVG’s community protection network keeps zero-day viruses at bay and their social media and gamer mode ensures your safety while playing and socializing online. BullGuard excels at early detection that erases and prevents threats before they become an issue based on suspicious network events, file processes and registry. Safe browsing is an added layer of internet protection that is also quite useful.

McAfee conveniently stops scans and updates while specified programs are running to avoid lag. Its digital file shredder erases all traces of a file from your system. The win-all 2016 feature is the one-license blanket install for Macs, Windows and Androids.

We can’t really call a winner in the features category, as all 3 products offer robust options and features.

4. Value for Money

McAfee costs $24.99-$49.99, AVG costs $55.99 and BullGuard costs $23.96-$39.98, if you're looking to save a buck then BullGuard is your top choice. On the other hand, if you’re looking for value, then you’ll actually get more for your money with McAfee. While you may pay slightly more, you’ll end up with unique McAfee-only features like permanently deleting sensitive digital files, WiFi protection for Androids, anti-theft, data backup, and parental controls.

BullGuard does not provide any of these features, but does include a 30-day money-back guarantee for new customers; AVG will give you some, but not everything that is offered by McAfee. If you want to get the most bang for your buck, stick with McAfee.

Winner: McAfee

5. Support

BullGuard guarantees email response within an hour, and you can also open a live chat and have answers in minutes. There is also an extensive knowledge base available, as well as a frequently asked questions page. AVG does not offer phone support, but has excellent service in other areas of support, including email and live chat. You can read our in-depth review for AVG if you want to learn more about its top-notch customer support.  

McAfee has an outstanding customer support service. Aside from the community forum, live chat and FAQ section, McAfee offers a Virtual Technician that automatically troubleshoots many issues before you can even worry about them. Services such as virus removal are available for free 24/7. Again, McAfee has to take this section for its extensive knowledge-base and support section.

Winner: McAfee

Now You Decide

It’s tough to pick an overall winner when comparing such top rated services, and as you can see each service has unique features and advantages. But since we have to choose, we must go with McAfee. Its combination of top-notch performance, support center, and value for money, make it a solid choice for anyone looking for the complete package.

Overall Winner: McAfee