BullGuard Review - Anti Virus Software

Our #1 pick for top anti virus software in 2018.

BullGuards wide range of security features, comprehensive system coverage, and low pricing make BullGuard our top pick for 2018. If you're looking for top notch protection for your computer, laptop, or cell phone, BullGuard is the best choice.

  • Most Comprehensive Scan
  • Up-To-Date Virus Definitions
  • Malware, Phishing, Virus, and Adware Protection
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Frequent Updates

Our Score9.3

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Overview

BullGuard Antivirus is a simple and straightforward software package that includes virus protection and a customizable spam filter. BullGuard, based in London, gives users fundamental security protection at a reasonable price. But how does it stack up compared to similar software on the market?

Here's what you should know before you decide to download BullGuard.

Security

BullGuard likes to keep things simple: and that's reflected in the relatively tiny size of the application. The install program is under 350KB - and the entire software package is a little bigger than 21MB. In our test, we went from downloading to scanning in a matter of a few minutes.

But how thorough is the antivirus scan? A performance test in March of 2018 showed that Bullguard blocked 97.7% of malicious software. That's pretty good, but it's still not as comprehensive as bigger names like Semantic (99.5%) and McAfee (99.1%).

However, BullGuard also comes packed with an advanced security feature: behavioral detection. Normally, antivirus software is only able to detect a virus if it's listed in its virus library. However, BullGuard behavioral detection can sense when a program is behaving like malicious software. If it sense abnormal registry, networks events, or file processes, it will flag the suspicious software. That means it's capable of detecting viruses no one has discovered yet. But be warned: this feature is only available for the Windows version of BullGuard.

Features

BullGuard Antivirus comes with an antivirus protector and a spam filter. But when you examine the dashboard, you'll see upgrade buttons for features that aren't included: Firewall, Backup, Vulnerabilities, PC Tune-up, and Parental Control. This would be understandable if BullGuard was freemium software. But since it's a full featured software package, it's a bit annoying to see ads for upgrades everytime you want to run a scan.

Fortunately, however, included features are simple to use. You can start a quick scan with just a single quick. This scans your most critical files in under two minutes in our test. That's one of the fastest "quick scans" that you can find anywhere. A more comprehensive custom scan or full scan can be accessed from a menu. BullGuard includes an On Access module that continuously monitors your system. If it ever detects a virus, you'll see a pop up informing you of the threat and how it was handled.

If you like to double check your work, BullGuard has a simple-to-understand reporting system. The reports allow you to scroll through previous scans, check what threats were detected and eliminated, and even see details about the settings of each scan. This can be handy if, for instance, you notice that the same virus repeatedly infects your system and you want to see how many times you had to eliminate it in the past.

BullGuard Antivirus has a comprehensive database of malicious and phishing URLs that it blocks. This feature works on the network level, so there's no need to install yet another browser extension. Whether you use IE, Edge, Chrome, Firefox, or Safari, BullGuard will redirect you to a warning page if it believes your browser is about to visit a malicious website.

While some antivirus packages include a weak spam filter as an extra, the Bullguard spam filter is surprisingly robust. It automatically integrates with Outlook, Thunderbird, Windows Mail and Windows Live Mail. It successfully cut down on unwanted spam emails with few false positives. Fine tuning features help you further improve accuracy if you want to.

Worried about how BullGuard might slow down your system while running demanding applications? BullGuard has your back with a "Game Mode." Before you load up that game or stream video, you switch on gamer mode to suspend virus scans and pop up notifications. BullGuard even includes pre-set profiles for the 20 most popular games.

Want to upgrade to the additional features? The vulnerability scanner can enhance your security by looking for weak spots in your system. This can reduce the risk of being infected by malware in the first place. The vulnerability scanner checks for unprotected passwords, software that requires an update, and even programs that are no longer used. After the scan, it provides suggestions on how to correct these vulnerabilities.

The backup feature stores your most important files to the cloud. Like the other features, it's refreshingly simple. You simple choose what you want to backup, and let it upload those files. If they're every lost, you can just click on "restore" to get them back quickly.

Another neat optional feature is network protection. If you're fan of smart home devices, this can help guard against common threats. It scams almost every device that connects to your internet for common threats. This provides you additional protection for your NEST thermostat, smart appliances, baby monitors, and devices such as Google Home.

Parental Controls, which come included as part of the BullGuard Internet Security Suite, give parents the ability to spy on and monitor what their kids are doing online. It's convenient if you want to block your kids from seeing inappropriate content, set limits on how much time they spend online, and prevent them from giving out personal details. To make things easier, the parental controls allow you to choose one of three age group profiles (3-7, 8-12 and 13-17).

Customer Support

BullGuard provides 15-day free trial period, so you can try before you buy. If you do purchase the package, it comes with a 30 day money back guarantee.

If you like to help yourself, BullGuard's website has step-by-step instructions on every single feature. If you want to get help from a real person, BullGuard provides 24/7 support via emails and livechat for users who speak English, Spanish, or Chinese. Speakers of French, German, Danish, Dutch, and Swedish have to limit their queries to 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Greenwich Mean Time. They promise to get back to you within 24 hours, but they typically require less time than that. If you want to get support over the phone, though, you're out of luck: BullGuard doesn't give you the option of calling a representative.

Pricing

$23.96