Avast One, Avast Free Antivirus and Avast Secure Browser Win Anti-Phishing Tests


Avast One Essential and Avast Free Antivirus, the award-winning online protection services from digital security and privacy leader Avast, have secured first place for the second time successively in a quarterly phishing detection comparison test* run by AV-Comparatives, an independent testing organization for antivirus (AV) products. Both products recorded a detection rate of 99%, ahead of Kaspersky (96%), Avira (95%) and Bitdefender (92%). The study also evaluated the effectiveness of phishing page detection among some of the world’s leading browsers. Avast Secure Browser, a privacy-first browser with anti-phishing technology, also ranked first with a 97% block rate, a two percent increase on the previous test in January, while Microsoft Edge and Mozilla Firefox came in second and third with block rates of 82% and 79%, respectively.

AV-Comparatives’ study, which ran from 21 March to 5 April 2022, tested all browser and antivirus products in parallel, exposing each to 250 valid and independently-selected phishing URLs, and 250 clean URLs for false alarm detection. The phishing protection provided by the AV products was tested on Windows 10 using Google Chrome 97.0 with Google Safe Browsing disabled. The browser extensions of the AVs were installed and enabled, and the competing browsers were tested without an antivirus program running. At the time of testing, all products were updated to their latest software versions.

“Given the prevalence of phishing attacks in both targeted and mass attacks, phishing protection is an important part of IT security measures,” said Andreas Clementi, founder and CEO of AV-Comparatives. “In this independent test, Avast proved that its antivirus and browser products provide strong protection against phishing attacks.”

“Maintaining an industry-leading detection rate to apply to our products and services is one of the most important components of protecting digital freedom for consumers and businesses,” said Siggi Stefnisson, Head of Threat Labs, at Avast. “It is also expected by our customers, so we’re very pleased to have maintained our lead for both our AV products and Avast Secure Browser. Last year, our threat detection engine identified and blocked nearly four million unique phishing URLs each month on average. Phishing continues to be one of the most common threats we encounter today as cybercriminals up the ante with spray-and-pray tactics but also targeted and personalized attacks.”

Editor’s Notes:

*This report was commissioned by Avast, however AV-Comparatives’ anti-phishing test of all products was carried out impartially and under identical conditions. The phishing sites were selected independently by AV-Comparatives without instruction, influence, dispute, or review from Avast or any of the tested parties.

A complete breakdown of the antivirus and browsers products tested are listed below:

Antivirus Products:
Avast Free Antivirus 22.2, Avast One Essential 22.2, Avira Free Security 1.1, Bitdefender Internet Security 26.0, ESET Internet Security 15.0/15.1, Kaspersky Internet Security 21.3, Malwarebytes Premium 4.5, McAfee Total Protection 16.0, Microsoft Defender 4.18 (with Defender browser plugin for Chrome), NortonLifeLock Norton 360 22.22.

Avast Secure Browser 99.0, Google Chrome 99.0/100.0 (with Safe Browsing), Microsoft Edge 99.0/100.0, Mozilla Firefox 98.0, Opera 85.0.


Avast Adds New Privacy and Scam Protection Features to Avast One


Avast (LSE: AVST), a global leader in digital security and privacy, has enhanced its all-in-one protection service Avast One with new features designed to protect people from online scams, fraud, and other personal privacy threats. A key enhancement, Email Guardian, makes it easier to spot malicious communications so that everyone, no matter their technical expertise, can stay safe from scams by proactively scanning web links in messages before they are opened and blocking malicious attachments sent to and from email accounts.

Avast One is a cross-platform service that goes beyond antivirus to include built-in technologies that improve online privacy, security, identity, and performance for the modern internet. In addition to scam and online fraud protection, the new update to Avast One includes Online Safety Score, a feature launching on Windows and Android which gives users regular feedback on their digital habits and provides personalized tips to improve online and device safety. Privacy Advisor, an educational tool that offers simple step-by-step instructions to adjust and improve privacy settings on popular platforms such as Google™, Facebook™ and LinkedIn™, is now available on both Windows and Mac while the Smart Virtual Private Network (VPN), a feature that automatically activates a VPN session when visiting banking websites or connecting to public Wi-Fi, is also available on both platforms as part of Avast’s multi-platform commitment.

“We know scams are a cause for concern for a lot of people so our goal with the new additions to the Avast One suite was to help them regain confidence and peace of mind when using the internet and their devices,” said Vita Santrucek, Chief Product Officer at Avast. “Not only are scams and other forms of online fraud more pervasive, they’re also more sophisticated, to the extent it’s really hard to differentiate between content that’s benign and content designed to exploit. Scammers take advantage of current affairs to reel people in, for example, two years ago we saw a spike in Covid-related scams, and in February and March this year we saw scams related to the Ukraine war.”

Avast One is available in three different versions: Essential, the free service, and premium services Individual and Family. Avast One Individual supports a single user for up to five devices and Avast One Family for up to six users across 30 devices.

The new features available in the latest update of Avast One Essential include:

  • Email Guardian: seeks to block malicious attachments to emails received in dedicated email apps installed on the desktop and prevent the user from sending malicious attachments to others. When a malicious attachment is detected, an alert is displayed. The file can still be downloaded if the user chooses to trust the file. Available on Windows and Mac.
  • Online Safety Score: gives the user regular feedback on their digital habits and personalized tips to help them take control of their online safety. Online Safety Score provides a ‘digital hygiene’ score calculated by analyzing the cyber hygiene of devices, including software and operating system updates and security settings such as antivirus shields and firewalls; the safer the device, the higher the score. The simple dashboard indicates status using green and red and provides personalized tips for improving online and device safety. Available on Windows and Android.
  • Privacy Advisor: provides a step-by-step guide to enhance privacy settings on popular websites and services such as Amazon, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Skype, Instagram, YouTube and Reddit, giving the user greater control over their data and how it’s used. Available on Windows and Mac.

Avast One Individual and Family now include:

  • Scam Protection: notifies the user when they receive a message, over SMS, social media, or messaging apps, where a potentially dangerous link has been identified. If a link is deemed safe, it automatically opens in the browser. If the link is deemed dangerous, the user is notified so they can decide if they would like to ignore the link or continue at their own risk. Available on Android.
  • Smart VPN: Smart VPN allows users to configure the VPN to automatically connect during a preferred situation, such as when joining a public network or logging onto a banking website. Smart VPN also can be configured to prompt the user to turn on the VPN when those scenarios are detected. Available on Windows and Mac.

Avast One is available in the United StatesUnited KingdomCanadaAustraliaFranceGermanySwitzerland, and Austria. It is available for download now at www.avast.com and is compatible with Android, iOS, macOS and Windows.