AVG’s malware scanner uses machine learning, heuristics and an online malware database in order to detect new threats. It scored high in our tests, with outstanding intelligent scanning and deep scanning performance. It is however lagging behind competitors in its ability to identify new and untested „zero-day“ malware.
After a quick install it launches its „Smart Scan“ which is a general scan of your system to look for threats and malware. It takes about 35 minutes to check 430,167 files on our test system. This is less than some competitors‘ tools, but still a fair amount of files.
The program’s clean and modern interface makes starting scans or exploring its other key features simple. It is recognizable with thumbnails and headings, as well as other elements that make it easy to understand what each feature does. The settings menu provides several options for customization. For example you can adjust the level of sensitivity for a deep scan or configure a data-shredder to add an option to Windows right-click menu.
Premium subscribers can dig this avail some additional features that aren’t included in the free version. These include „Webcam Protection“, a feature that blocks access to your camera and makes video calls more secure, as well as „Sensitive Data Shield“ that encrypts your personal files. Fancy extras like a password manager or a performance tuning aren’t available, however it’s because AVG has other paid programs in its portfolio with these capabilities.
The mobile app from AVG offers a variety of options, including the capability to remotely lock an Android device or wipe it (Android only) and an image vault that allows you to securely share files. Its most useful mobile feature however, is the anti-theft component, which helps you track a missing phone or tablet, and even sound an alarm to scare it away.