AVG Technologies provides one of the most popular free antivirus applications available, but since 2006 they have added antispyware, link scanning, safe search, identity theft prevention and other technologies to their repertoire in order to create a complete internet security suite. Their antivirus software has tested well with VB100 since 2003, and they continue to earn awards and certifications from a variety of independent test labs.

The AVG Internet Security suite is a complete solution that goes beyond basic security. AVG understands that many users opt for the free antivirus version and that they need to offer valuable additions to entice them to upgrade to the paid version. To satisfy paying customers they provide tools that many other products and their free version do not, such as Facebook protection, website reports, anti-bullying technology to protect your children, a YouTube video accelerator, more frequent updates, system tools and 24/7 support.

AVG detects malware from all avenues. It provides protection from viruses and other malware from the internet, optical discs and external drives, email and email attachments, IM links, social media links and file sharing. It uses signature, polymorphic, heuristic and behavior-based analysis to detect all types of malware, including spyware, adware, Trojans, browser hijackers, phishing scams and rootkits. It also has a website advisor. This tool, called LinkScanner, rates websites listed in search engine results so you can know how safe they are before you visit them. LinkScanner works with Google, Yahoo, Bing and other popular search engines. You can also submit suspicious URLs to AVG and they will check them for you before you visit the site.

AVG Internet Security suite protects social media interactions. This tool can scan links posted on Facebook, Twitter or MySpace to check for safety. AVG also provides an AVG security toolbar specifically for Facebook. These tools will not only protect you and your computer from malicious links but also prevent you from sharing bad links with your friends.

This internet security software includes most of the features you need to protect your computer and keep your AVG security software up-to-date. You can schedule scans and updates, play games uninterrupted, protect your identity, scan USB drives and discs, and it will pause or delay scans when you laptop battery is running low. However, though AVG provides parental controls, they are not included with the suite. Parental control is an inexpensive add-on.

This security suite does not have a secure browser or sandbox. A secure browser is a browser often run in a virtual area separate from your PC. Since the virtual browser does not run on your PC, browsing is safe. A sandbox is a virtual area where you can open a URL. What AVG does have is a site advisor and a tool for testing URLs. The site advisor provides reports on websites with information such as the number of compromised pages, threats found, server location and the number of social media followers. If you are uncertain of a website's safety, you can copy the URL and submit it to AVG for instant verification.

AVG provides substantial support to its license owners. You can easily obtain direct support by telephone, chat or email. They also provide the AVG TechBuddy, which provides virtual assistance with common problems. Their support section also includes FAQs, video tutorials, virus removal tools, hot topics and access to their user forum. You can also connect with AVG via Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow them via RSS feed. Another extremely helpful download they provide is an AVG Rescue file if you are locked out of Windows and need to rescue your PC.

AVG Internet Security Summary:
8.6/10

Millions of consumers have relied on the free version of AVG security for years to protect their PC. We highly recommend upgrading to the fully functional paid version. AVG Internet Security is constantly improving and adding new ways to protect your PC and personal information.

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AVG Internet Security 2014

Pros
AVG is good at antivirus and zero-day malware detection.

Cons
Parental controls are not included with this suite but can be added as a small additional purchase.

The Verdict
: 8.58/10

AVG provides competitive protection rates and has powerful tools for securing social media interactions.