Kaspersky and McAfee are popular options if you’re looking for an anti-virus and online security system. If you’re considering these options but not sure which to choose, you need a comparison of their features and benefits so you can make the right decision for your needs and preferences. That’s why you should keep reading to find my Kaspersky vs McAfee comparison.
- Malware Protection
- Impact on System Performance
- Which is Easier to Use?
- Brand Comparison
- Help and Customer Support
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Features Comparison: Kaspersky vs McAfee
Let’s start our Kaspersky vs McAfee features comparison.
McAfee Total Security Features
McAfee Total Security is compatible with both PC and Mac. This is McAfee’s most complete antivirus package.
It has most of the security features and additional utilities that you’d expect in a higher-end suite. Some of these include:
- File Encryption Capability: This protects your important folders and files.
- Vulnerability Scanner: McAfee’s Vulnerability Scanner scans your device and system for security problems and outdated software.
- Anti-Spam Module: The app’s anti-spam module will help you block out junk mail.
- Two-Way Firewall: McAfee’s two-way firewall will monitor your network traffic and stop potential hacking.
- File Shredder: The File Shredder functionality means you can permanently delete any sensitive files. Be aware, though, that files you put through File Shredder can never be recovered. McAfee also offers a File Lock utility when you get the Total Protection suite.
More Perks of McAfee Total Security
You get five licenses for the True Key Identity Manager when you purchase the McAfee Total Protection suite.
This is an advanced password manager. It will store as many passwords as you need to keep, and it makes remembering passwords and logging into sites simple and easy.
The amount of money you will pay for a McAfee Total Protection subscription depends on how many devices you want to include in licensing.
Users needing to sign up several devices will enjoy access to the Security Management Console. This Security Management Console is a place for managing the protection of every device.
You get a 100% Virus Protection Guarantee when you use McAfee. This means that if your device ends up with a virus, an expert from McAfee will get rid of the virus or provide a full refund.
Be aware, though, that you will only be eligible for this if you subscribe to auto-renewal.
You get extra web protection from McAfee’s WebAdvisor browser extension. This will block out any dangerous websites you inadvertently try to visit.
It will also hold off phishing attacks and scans files you download in real-time, making sure they don’t contain malware.
If you want to upgrade from Total Security, you can go with McAfee LiveSafe. McAfee LiveSafe provides all the features of Total Security in addition to secure cloud storage (1 GB).
This is the perfect place for storing sensitive documents and files. Like Total Security, McAfee LiveSafe is compatible with both Windows and Mac.
Kaspersky also offers different suite options. The free tier, called Kaspersky Free, is the most basic option.
Kaspersky Free provides a limited amount of malware protection. It gives you some protection from phishing or malicious websites.
It will also make sure any USB drives you connect to your device are malware-free.
Be aware, however, that you will not get extra utility tools or advanced security tools in the free version of Kaspersky.
Kaspersky Paid Tiers
If the free version of Kaspersky doesn’t sound like enough, look into the paid version of Kaspersky Anti-Virus.
Be aware, though, that this isn’t an option for you if you’re a Mac user. It’s only compatible with PCs.
With a paid Kaspersky subscription you’ll get all the features of Kaspersky Free with the addition of extra ransomware protection, a Silent Mode feature (this shuts off notifications when you don’t want to be interrupted), and a Vulnerability Scanner.
The Vulnerability Scanner looks for outdated software and security loopholes.
You get all the features of Kaspersky Anti-Virus, as well as an advanced Firewall.
There is also an anti-spam module and a hardened browser (this is to ensure better safety when online banking and shopping). You will also get a limited parental control filter and protection for your microphone and webcam.
With Total Security, you get all the features of Internet Security, as well as a File Shredder capability (this sets you permanently delete files so they can never be recovered), a backup utility (this gives you 2 GB of Dropbox space), and a Password Manager.
Total Security also offers a file encryption utility and an advanced parental control module.
All of Kaspersky’s security suites include a limited VPN. This has a daily data limit of 200 MB.
Malware Protection: Kaspersky vs McAfee
Malware protection becomes more essential with each passing day. I strongly recommend ensuring that you have excellent malware protection in your security software.
You need protection against both known malware and currently unknown or emerging malware. This is also referred to as zero-day malware. On my PC I run Malwarebytes in tandem with my antivirus suite, because I feel Malwarebytes is really good at protecting against zero-day malware.
However, a later test showed both applications coming in with an even score of 99%.
Overall, however, experts tend to say Kaspersky is stronger in malware detection and protection.
How Do They Each Impact System Performance?
Any program you add to your device will use a certain amount of system resources. This may impact your device’s speed.
You’re likely to experience some sort of effect on your system resources when you use an anti-virus program.
The right anti-virus application for your device, however, should only cause a tiny effect on system performance. And of course, a security suite is essential for keeping your device safe as you explore online.
In fact, having one of these programs on your computer means that you are safeguarding its performance now and in the future.
Which is Easier to Use, Kaspersky or McAfee?
If you used McAfee in the past and weren’t impressed, think about giving it another try. The new interface is much better and easier to understand.
In McAfee, the main tabs are PC Security, Home, Privacy, Identity, and Account. These make up the main menu.
There are also links to Alerts, Settings, and Tips in the top right-hand corner of the interface.
McAfee’s home window is the default screen. There you will see the protection status, as well as buttons for Quick Scan and Full Scan capabilities.
When you look at the bottom of the interface, you will see tiles for different tasks, including creating True Key password manager, checking updates, and removing trackers and browser cookies.
The window for PC Security offers advanced features such as real-time protection and a firewall. The identity tab features WebAdvisor and Anti-spam modules, as well as the File Shredder function.
The Privacy tab features a File Vault (this is where you can put sensitive files and keep them safe with encryption and a password), as well as parental control features.
Like McAfee, Kaspersky has an interface that is easy to understand. The home window is what you will see when you launch the software.
This has many different links and buttons, and all the elements are laid out intuitively.
Brand Comparison: Kaspersky and McAfee
McAfee is a famous anti-virus program that is used in homes and businesses all over the world.
While Kaspersky is also known as being extremely effective, some people in the United States perceive it as controversial.
McAfee is favored by people who like avoiding false alarms. It also offers basic ID protection, as well as Keep 256-bit AES encryption you can use for PC files.
Kaspersky has parental controls and a password manager. It also has strong malware defending functionality, as well as two-factor authentication you can use for your online accounts.
McAfee is an American anti-virus provider. It was founded in 1987, so it’s quite a bit older than Kaspersky.
There are now 7,000 McAfee employees in at least 189 countries today. McAfee protects more than 525 million users worldwide.
Customer Support Comparison: McAfee vs Kaspersky
McAfee and Kaspersky both offer excellent customer support and help options. We’ll see the details below.
You have help technicians on-call with Kaspersky.
If you’re in North America, there is telephone support you can access every day of the week. This help is available between 7 a.m. and 1 a.m. Eastern time every day.
If you use chat or email support, you will get your reply by the next day at the very latest. Kaspersky also offers an extensive FAQ section, how-to videos, and helpful articles if you need help when support isn’t immediately available.
McAfee has both live chat and phone support. You can contact the company’s technicians through these methods of contact 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
McAfee also offers a support hub, a forum, and a knowledge base. If you check out McAfee’s social channels (such as Facebook and Twitter), you will have easy access to McAfee’s contact details.
McAfee provides a guarantee that your system will stay malware-free. If you end up with malware on your device while using McAfee, the company’s technicians will access your device and repair it.
Exploring Pricing: Kaspersky vs. McAfee
McAfee’s Total Protection is its primary protection option. The pricing differentiation between its tiers is how many devices you want to protect.
You can choose to protect one device, up to five devices, or up to 10 devices. Pricing on their website is very transparent, and it’s easy to toggle between these three options to compare the cost for yourself.
If you want to go to a higher level, check out McAfee Total Protection Plus VPN. This protects five devices.
If you need to cover an unlimited number of devices, look into McAfee LifeSafe version.
If you think Kaspersky is more up your alley, you will be pleased to know that it offers a free antivirus option.
As we mentioned earlier, however, this is quite limited. You will probably want to go with one of the paid tiers.
It’s kind of difficult to compare McAfee and Kaspersky, as their pricing tiers are a bit misaligned.
However, when looking at how much it costs to protect ten devices, Kaspersky costs about $30 more.
Both McAfee and Kaspersky provide 30-day money-back guarantees, so you enjoy extra peace of mind no matter which one you choose. You can ask for a full refund if you have any problems, or even if you don’t.
Which Option is Right for You, Kaspersky or McAfee?
Some Americans don’t feel comfortable with the Kaspersky brand, despite its software’s fantastic features. If this is you, McAfee will probably be your choice. But if you’re open to both companies, choose the anti-virus option that best fits your needs and budget based on what I’ve explained above.
I recommend taking one or both for a trial during their money-back guarantee window to see if you notice a difference in UX, features, or protection. Just set a calendar reminder to cancel well in advance of the 30 day period for whichever option you don’t choose.