In the business world, security is a priority.
Small businesses should not underestimate the importance of protecting their data and information and should invest in the best security software available.
Whether you are looking for a comprehensive suite or a specialized program, there are many options for small businesses looking for quality security solutions.
In this article, we discuss 7 of the best security software for small businesses so you can select the one that fits your needs best.
McAfee: Best for Comprehensive Features
McAfee Total Protection is an antivirus solution that offers continuous and automatic cybersecurity protection against threats like viruses, phishing, hackers, and ransomware.
It’s an ideal option for small businesses and startups that require real-time malware protection across all devices.
The product comes in multiple subscription plans, allowing small businesses to customize it to their needs.
Besides standard features like firewall protection, Wi-Fi security, password management, and PC optimization, McAfee also offers additional features such as a PC cleaner, identity protection, file shredder, and a virtual private network.
McAfee Total Protection is compatible with various devices, including PCs, Macs, ChromeOS, and Android.
McAfee Total Protection offers three plans: Essential, Premium, and Advanced.
- The Essential plan costs $39.99 annually and protects up to five devices.
- The Premium plan starts from $44.99 per year but misses out on some features while including unlimited devices.
- The advanced plan costs $79.99 annually and covers all the services, including unlimited devices.
Other features of McAfee Total Protection include identity theft protection, a secure VPN option, compatibility with major operating systems except for Linux, a password manager, and a file shredder that can delete files without leaving traces.
Pros of McAfee Total Protection include a free trial, the ability to protect unlimited devices, multiple plans for more flexibility, and 24/7 customer support.
However, lower plans miss out on some important features, and prices could be high for some small businesses.
Avast: Best for Solopreneurs and Remote Workers
Avast Business is an all-encompassing cybersecurity solution that caters to the needs of small to medium-sized businesses.
It provides multi-layered protection against a range of cyber threats, including malware, viruses, spyware, ransomware, and phishing attacks.
With its advanced threat detection capabilities, Avast Business ensures business password security and offers USB security and VPN protection.
Moreover, the software comes equipped with firewall, email protection, and web protection features that provide businesses with an extra layer of security.
Its user-friendly management console allows businesses to manage their security across all devices from one centralized dashboard.
Pricing for Avast Business varies depending on the number of devices and type of operating system.
The pricing tiers include:
- Home office business: $139.99 per year for up to 10 devices.
- Essential Business Security: $148.36 per year for up to five devices.
- Premium Business Security: $187 per year for up to five devices.
- Ultimate Business Security: $227 per year for up to five devices.
Avast Business offers various features, including advanced threat detection, real-time scanning, and threat identification, system and application patching, and cloud-based technology for automatic updates.
Some of the pros of Avast Business include
- its ability to be deployed for either on-premise or cloud environments
- an easy-to-use management console for managing security across all devices
- automatic updates to systems and applications to ensure protection against the latest threats.
However, some cons of Avast Business include
- pricing plans that may be too costly for small and mid-sized businesses
- system performance that may slow during scans and updates
- limited support options for Essential Business Security subscribers.
Bitdefender: Best for Prevention
In 2023, my top pick for antivirus software for small and medium-to-large businesses is Bitdefender.
This software provides advanced security for computers, mobiles, and networks, is user-friendly, and doesn’t slow down device performance.
Bitdefender’s antivirus solution utilizes cloud-based technology, traditional signature-based malware scanning, and machine learning technology (similar to Norton and Kaspersky) to detect malware.
The scanner is highly effective and lightweight, requiring minimal CPU and disk space during scans. Bitdefender caught every malware sample during my tests, including trojans, keyloggers, rootkits, and other threats.
Bitdefender offers a variety of features for businesses, including firewall, network security, web and exploit protection, endpoint risk analytics, detection, and response, application and device control, sandbox analyzer, MITRE event tagging and anomaly defense, and root cause analysis.
The sandbox analyzer is handy for IT administrators, allowing them to perform extensive testing and receive comprehensive reports on malware’s root cause and behavior.
The addition of MITRE techniques can also help detect unique cyber attacks.
Bitdefender makes it easy to assess security configurations and prioritize fixes with a clear list.
The software offers several plans, including;
- Bitdefender Small Office Security for small businesses
- GravityZone Business Security Premium for medium and large businesses, and
- GravityZone Business Security Enterprise for the only access to MITRE event tagging and manual sandbox investigation.
Prices start at $89.99/year, and businesses can select the number of devices and servers that require protection.
All plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee and a 1-month free trial.
Kaspersky provides antivirus solutions suitable for any business type or size. For small businesses with 1-50 employees, Kaspersky’s Small Office Security protection is ideal.
This antivirus suite includes a premium VPN, password manager, and safe money services.
It is compatible with various operating systems like macOS, Windows, Android and iOS, and protects data, computers, and servers.
For businesses with over 250 employees, Kaspersky has Endpoint Security Cloud.
This suite has Kaspersky’s full protection features and is offered under three different plans.
The Endpoint Security Cloud helps prevent and remedy known and unknown vulnerabilities on workstations with a remediation engine.
Kaspersky’s antivirus for businesses is available in two categories: Small Office Security and Endpoint Security Cloud. The pricing is as follows:
- Small Office Security: Starts from $135 per year for up to five users.
- Endpoint Security Cloud: Starts from $192.37 per year for up to five users.
- Endpoint Security Cloud Plus: $308.75 per year for up to five users.
- Endpoint Security Cloud Pro: $461.70 per year for up to five users.
The software offers features such as patch management and encryption management. The software updater also helps fix vulnerable applications on PCs.
Smart protection automatically connects to a VPN when an insecure network is detected. The software can be customized to control user access to applications and internet resources.
Kaspersky’s platform offers cybersecurity training and covers multiple devices and operating systems. Each of the plans also comes with a free trial.
However, prices may be high for small businesses.
CrowdStrike Falcon is a cloud-based software that utilizes artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms to provide real-time detection and response to cyberattacks.
It offers endpoint protection to secure devices and networks against malware, ransomware, and other forms of cyberattacks.
The software’s AI-powered threat analysis allows businesses to identify and respond to potential threats quickly.
Its cloud-based management console enables businesses to manage their security from a centralized location, eliminating the need for on-premises hardware and reducing the workload of IT departments.
CrowdStrike provides detailed threat intelligence and reporting, allowing businesses to track and analyze threats on all popular platforms, including Windows, Windows Server, macOS, and Linux.
CrowdStrike Falcon offers four pricing tiers: Falcon Go, Falcon Pro, Falcon Elite, and Falcon Complete.
Falcon Go costs $299.95 per year and requires a minimum of five devices, while Falcon Pro costs $499.95 per year and also requires a minimum of five devices.
Falcon Elite and Falcon Complete are available by contacting the vendor for a quote.
The software provides real-time threat detection and response, endpoint protection, a cloud-based management console, AI-powered threat analysis, and 24/7 monitoring and support.
It is easy to deploy and manage, offering various pricing options to fit different business needs.
However, some may find the cost of CrowdStrike Falcon relatively high compared to other antivirus solutions, and some features may require additional licenses or add-ons.
It also requires an internet connection for full functionality.
Malwarebytes: Best for Real-Time Protection
Detecting threats, such as zero-day threats, brute force attacks, and malicious payloads, is a breeze with Malwarebytes, the cloud-based antivirus software.
AI powers the software and is a lightweight agent that can identify and remediate attacks with its EDR technology.
This makes it an ideal choice for businesses looking to recover from cyberattacks.
Malwarebytes also has a linking engine that can remove malware traces, making it an efficient tool for businesses to use.
Malwarebytes has several pricing options, including Endpoint Protection, which starts at $69.99 per year, per device, and Endpoint Detection and Response, which starts at $84.99 per year, per device.
One of the software’s standout features is its browser guard, which acts as an ad-blocker.
Additionally, Malwarebytes uses AI/ML to monitor, detect, and interrupt payload delivery, making it an excellent choice for businesses looking for fast and automated threat detection.
The software also has DNS filtering functionality that protects users from suspicious web domains. Furthermore, the cloud management console provides an easy setup process, making it a convenient tool for businesses.
While Malwarebytes has many pros, such as its use of AI/ML and browser guard, it has some cons.
One is that it doesn’t include a firewall option, and another is that it doesn’t have a file shredder option. However, businesses can still benefit significantly from using Malwarebytes as their antivirus software.
Norton Antivirus: Best for Small Businesses
Norton Small Business is an exceptional solution for small businesses that is highly efficient and easy to install.
Setting up Norton Small Business is straightforward, with plenty of guidance throughout the installation.
Upgrading to Norton Small Business is also a simple process if you are already a Norton user.
Norton’s malware scanner, similar to Bitdefender, employs several methods to detect threats, including a vast malware directory, heuristic analysis, and machine learning.
Norton detected all of my malware samples during tests, including potentially unwanted programs (PUPs), rootkits, spyware, keyloggers, trojans, and ransomware.
Moreover, using Norton Small Business did not affect my device’s performance, even with the real-time scanning feature turned on.
In addition to the malware scanner, Norton Small Business provides:
- real-time protection against spam and social networking scams
- Wi-Fi security for employees working off-site
- Download Insight to caution employees about downloading files from potentially risky sites
- Identity Safe to store employee login credentials securely, and device management oversight through an easy-to-use online hub.
For larger companies, Symantec, Norton’s parent company, offers an advanced endpoint solution with features like advanced threat remediation, software-as-a-service, and corporate assets protection.
Norton offers excellent customer support that is available 24/7 to help resolve malware-related issues. Additionally, customer support can freeze access to lost or stolen devices at any time.
Norton Small Business offers annual subscriptions for 5, 10, or 20 devices, with prices starting at $99.99/year. Norton also allows businesses to add new features as needed, which means businesses do not have to pay for the protection they do not use.
All annual subscription purchases from Norton come with a 60-day money-back guarantee.