To pay or not to pay? That is the question with Antivirus programs. In our case; Bitdefender! If we need to pay, then which product/version should we choose and why? Well, let's find out with a short Bitdefender product comparison!
Bitdefender Product Comparison
I can almost hear you asking "How is that supposed to help me out?". Well, let me explain how this works.
On the above comparison table, you can see the different versions of Bitdefender and the most critical features (In my opinion) that they do; or don't offer!
The further that you move to the right of the table, the more that you'll have to pay and the more features that you'll be getting.
As a side note, there is also the "Family Pack" product which the same as "Total Security". The only difference that they have is that Family Pack allows you to install it on an unlimited number of devices.
No doubt, more features are better, but there are some features that you might not necessarily need. So, the trick is to stop at the point where you no longer need extra features.
Now, not knowing what these features do, can be an issue. So, let me explain.
All in all, these are the features that most essential features that Bitdefender offers:
Features Summary - Index
Without any further ado, let's take a look at what they do. Click on a feature to quickly jump to that section.
Advanced Threat Defense
Usually, Antivirus programs rely on signatures to detect threats. Means that for a virus to be identified as a virus, the antivirus must discover, report, and add to the database of the Antivirus program. Which, in some cases, takes a considerable amount of time.
Advanced threat defense, on the other hand, works automatically without human interaction. It's a behavioral analysis system. It looks for suspicious behavior in your system and blocks anything that might look dangerous.
There are numerous harmful websites online. Safe browsing is a feature which tries to detect if you're browsing such a site and gives you a warning.
A malicious website could be anything from a site which hosts malware to a phishing website or anything like that.
Multi-Layer Ransomware Protection
Ransomware is a kind of malware which encrypts all of your files and asks for a ransom. If you don't pay the ransom, you don't get your files back. Multi-layer Ransomware protection was created to protect you against that.
24/7 Online Support
Technical support is helpful in case that something doesn't work as it should with the product or if you need to remove malware manually. Other than that, the online support should be open to any product related queries that you might have.
This feature ensures that you will be able to use your online banking account and shop online safely without having to worry about prying eyes who might steal your banking information.
A password manager stores your passwords and encrypts them. That enables you to get easy access to them without having to worry about someone stealing them from you.
People can easily spy on you through your webcam with the use of Spyware. Webcam protection restricts the programs which can use your webcam so that you'll be safe.
A firewall filters your network traffic and only allows specific programs to interact with the Internet. In that way, you won't have to worry about malware getting installed out of nowhere.
The parental advisor is a sort of parental control program. You can use it to prevent your child from accessing certain websites, applications, or contacting certain people!
This feature prevents other people from opening your files outside of your computer. Means that even if someone manages to steal your data in some way, then he won't be able to get access to them and see their contents.
The name is pretty much self-explanatory. Anti-Theft uses various tracking methods (mostly the Internet) to locate and lock your device in case that it's lost!
The optimizer will free up your disk space by deleting residual files from programs that you've removed. It also cleans up your registry and makes sure that there's nothing that may be a threat to your privacy.
Mac and Smartphone Protection
The Total Security version of Bitdefender offers security programs not only for Windows but also for Android, iOS, and Mac.
Free or Paid?
We all love free products, and Bitdefender offers a free version. Can we rely on it? The answer is a bit more complicated than you might think.
The simple answer is that the paid version is much more effective than the free counterpart. It offers extra features, it's extra effective, and that's why you should get it. As for the long answer:
Security programs are at best a second layer of protection. The first one is always you. Meaning that it's entirely possible to get infected with a full security configuration or never get an infection with a free option.
Other than that, it's true that paid offers more than free, but that doesn't mean that you need it, especially, if you're an advanced user. Although, I imagine that an advanced user wouldn't bother reading this. No offense.
In overall, most people will go for the premium choices.
Which Product Should I Choose?
You're the only one who can answer that. Each one of us needs different features and is willing to pay a different price.
First, look at how much you're willing to spend. Then, start from the top of the Bitdefender product comparison table, move towards the bottom, and stop when you think that you don't need any extra features.
Now move to the right of Bitdefender product comparison table and see which Bitdefender product is the one that offers all the features that you need. Simple as that.
For example, let's suppose that I need everything up to Banking Protection. When I stop there, I notice that the free version doesn't support that feature.
Moving to the right, I can see that the cheapest product which has Banking Protection is Antivirus Plus, which means that it should be ideal for me.
Repeat the same process and go with whatever suits you best!