Skip to main content
Loading...

Bitdefender Total Security 2019 Review

A full-featured product with heavyweight protection with a slashed price tag make 2019's offering a must.

PRICE WHEN REVIEWED
  • $44.99 (1 year)
Bitdefender's Total Security offering was already an extensive product, and 2019's offering adds more to an already full basket. Here, we bring your our full review of one of the best antivirus packages for your PC.


Included in the reduced price tag for 5 devices (at time of writing it was £34.99/US$44.99 reduced from £69.99/US$89.99, but at time of publication it was even lower), you get all the usual protections, plus a password manager, a parental advisor, and a 200MB per day per device VPN, but this is just the start.

To help flatten out the learning curve of such a big product, there's the familiar “Auto Pilot” switch on the main interface. When on, which it is by default, Bitdefender uses sensible settings for all modules. The main interface itself has also had an overhaul, and feels a lot busier than last year.

Along with the usual file and system scans is the dedicated vulnerability scan, which checks your system for outdated software, weak network passwords, and critical Windows updates that need to be applied. There's also a dedicated WiFi scan that checks  you're not using weak encryption or authentication protocols.

As with an increasing number of AV offerings, there's also a boot time scan, called the Rescue Environment, which runs at next boot up. This scans your system before Windows and any stealth malware has a chance to start up.

The new Oneclick Optimiser pops up soon after installation to tell you there's space to be freed up. The catch to this, though, is that along with temporary files, login cookies also disappear. Logging back into all your sites without a password manager, even in your browser, would be a painful exercise and one you should be warned about. What's more, the optimiser regularly pops up, and running it a second time logs you back out again.

Also pushed to the front is the concept of profiles. These kick in automatically when you're watching a movie, or playing a game, for example. The different modes prevent popups, or put off housekeeping events until the software detects that they're appropriate.

The anti-spam module allows you to explicitly whitelist friends and blacklist real spammers. You also have the option of automatically banning any spam written with Asian or Cyrillic character sets, and of submitting any unknown samples to the Bitdefender cloud for analysis before opening them.

Bitdefender has joined the growing group of domestic AV providers that incorporate so-called “next gen” application behaviour monitoring. If a piece of code does something suspicious, Advanced Threat Defense will block it. There's also a whitelist for programs that inadvertently trip this feature.

Allied to this is the Safe Files module, which protects nominated folders from any ransomware designed to run at boot time. Under Auto Pilot, this is deactivated by default, but should really be engaged if it doesn't impact your computer's boot up time.

Gone from the control panel is last year's Ransomware module and in comes a new ransomware remediation ability. This is disabled by default, but when engaged, it will automatically roll back any changes made by ransomware to your precious files.
For online security, Bitdefender includes its secure Safepay browser. This should be used when entering payment details on web sites, and will pop up to suggest its use as appropriate. You can also enter trusted bookmarks into Safepay, and use them instead of potentially fraudulent ones apparently sent via email from criminals posing as your bank.

Closely associated with Safepay is the VPN. Unlike standalone offerings, you don't get a choice of exit countries, so it's fairly useless for streaming geo-locked content, but it will hide your data from prying eyes while banking or when on holiday and using the hotel's WiFi.

There is a daily data limit, but this is set at a generous 200MB per device per day. The premium version has unlimited data, and allows you to select one of about 20 destination countries for £34.99 per year. Without testing, there's no way to say if you can unlock specific content with the paid version. For global streaming as opposed to personal security, it's probably better to shop around. You can see our pick of the best VPN services here.

General browsing is protected by the Online Threat Prevention module. This uses machine learning and a global web site reputation database to judge whether any site to which you surf should be considered malicious. Like the Safe Browsing service used in Chrome and other browsers, this is constantly updated, meaning that you're technically getting global real-time protection.

As usual, the bundled password manager allows you to set up multiple wallets, each protected by its own master password. Simply enter this master password to have Bitdefender securely log you into sites and services.

The File Vault module allows you to protect sensitive files with strong encryption. Vaults are mounted as virtual disc drives, with a drive letter you select. You simply drop your files and folders onto the drive, and no one can access them without the drive's password.

The Parental Advisor opens a web page at Bitdefender that allows you to silently install the tracking module on your children's mobile devices that are already protected by Bitdefender.

Along with tracking location, apps used, sites visited, and calls made, you can also block unknown numbers, and calls where the number is withheld. Usefully, you can impose a bedtime, and set up email alerts when your child attempts to access content you've banned or if they enter a restricted area.

Completing this rather comprehensive set of facilities is the almost obligatory file shredder, which securely deletes your data.

The mobile version is available on iOS and Android. The Android version looks sparse at first sight, but the small menu at the top left shows otherwise. Several useful features are included.

For example, Account Privacy allows you to enter an email address and have Bitdefender test it to see if the credentials have been harvested or otherwise leaked online.

Web Protection protects your browsing activities. Anti-Theft has all the usual features (remote locate, lock, wipe, and scream), and also allows you to automatically take a picture when someone fails to unlock the device.

You can also configure Bitdefender to send a text to a trusted number if your SIM is replaced. App Lock makes it necessary to enter a PIN before running selected apps. There's also the in-built VPN, with 200MB of free data per day.

Finally, and in keeping with the theme of privacy, you can't take a screenshot of the main interface, so attackers might not be able to see what modules you have engaged.

Comments

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Loading...

Popular posts from this blog

2019 BMW i8 Review

The 2019 BMW i8 is a head-turner for its looks, which hides its plug-in powertrain. That’s good or bad, depending on your priorities.Even among six-figure cars with two doors, the 2019 BMW i8 steals stares. That could be because of the dramatic wing doors and futuristic shape, its laser headlights at night, or the 2019 i8’s silent propulsion for up to 18 miles.
Or it may steal attention because, even after more than four years on sale, it’s a very rare sight.

LG G5 Review In-Depth

Can LG take on the Galaxy S7 with a metal design, dual-cameras and an accessory slot? Here's our first LG G5 review, focusing on LG G5 design and build, LG G5 specs, LG G5 cameras and LG G5 software and apps.
Alongside the Galaxy S7, the LG G5 is one of the biggest phones (not literally) to launch in 2016 – and we're not just talking in the Android world. It's one of the heavyweights and LG will be looking to set the market alight with the G5's alternative and innovative modular design.

BlackBerry KEYone Review

BlackBerry soliders on with a curious Android device that gets nearly everything right. It’s not for everyone though, in fact, it’s not really for anyone. But if you want a physical keyboard you will absolutely love it.
Should I Buy The BlackBerry KEYone?
But then, the KEYone is the best BlackBerry phone for years. It has (finally) successfully melded classic BlackBerry design with the necessary mix of Android and nostalgia. Importantly, the latter is only faint this time – this is a device for 2017, not 2007.If you love your iPhone or Samsung, you’ll hate the KEYone and won’t even consider buying it. But if you’ve made it to the end of this review, chances are you’re weighing up a buy. If you think you’ll love the BlackBerry KEYone, then I’m pretty certain you won’t be disappointed. You’re part of a minority, but finally BlackBerry has a phone for you that doesn’t force you to compromise.

Xiaomi Mi A2 Review: Xiaomi Meets Android One

Users outside China and India aren't especially familiar with MIUI, but when you combine Xiaomi hardware with Android One the results are quite something. Check out our Mi A2 review for full details on this impressive budget smartphone.
Should I Buy The Xiaomi Mi A2?
The inclusion of Android One makes Xiaomi phones so much more easily accessible to UK- and US users - and that's a very good thing, finally allowing those outside its main market territories a taste of what else is out there. The Mi A2 merely whets our appetite for what's coming our way when Xiaomi officially launches in the UK on 8 November.A fantastic budget phone, the Mi A2 is just £199 and easily obtainable from Amazon. It combines decent build quality with a nice display, good all-round performance and a well-specced trio of cameras. It out-specs and out-performs every other phone in our budget smartphone chart.

Apple iPhone XR Review

If you aren't sure you are ready to leave the Home button behind and embrace Face ID, think again. We'll tell you why the iPhone XR is worth the sacrifice - especially because it's just as good (if not better than) the iPhone XS. Find out more in out full review.
Should I Buy The Apple iPhone XR?
The iPhone XR brings Face ID to the masses. We’re sure people will continue to rebel against the lack of Home button, but eventually we expect them to come round and embrace the larger screen, Portrait mode (front and back), animoji and memoji.We have no doubt that this will be a popular iPhone and it deserves to be. The only question is why would anyone buy an iPhone XS when the iPhone XR is just as powerful and has a bigger screen.

Like Fan Page