Many of us have had our computer or phone infected by malware at some point. These days, we often need to protect more than one device. Some antivirus programs only allow you to protect a single machine, so they don’t make financial sense for a family, small business, or person with a lot of devices.
We’re here to help. Our team has performed extensive hands-on testing and identified six high-quality antivirus for multiple devices. Whether you’re looking to block malware downloads automatically, protect against ransomware, or find any viruses that might already be on your PC, we’re certain you’ll find something suitable in this guide.
We’ll go into more detail on our top antivirus apps a little further down. In the meantime, though, here’s a quick overview of each.
Best antivirus for multiple devices
- Norton 360: Our first choice antivirus for multiple devices. Well-known company with reasonably-priced protection for up to 10 devices including phones and tablets. Includes plenty of extra privacy tools.
- Surfshark Antivirus: A great budget option for Windows, Android, or MacOS. Protects against viruses, unauthorized webcam access, spyware, and more.
- TotalAV: Real-time virus scanning and phishing protection for multiple devices. Can also spring clean and optimize your system for better performance.
- McAfee Total Protection: Antivirus app with no device limit whatsoever. Integrated identity-theft monitoring, social media privacy optimization, and scam protection.
- Bitdefender: Antivirus app that can automatically patch vulnerabilities, prevent ransomware, and automatically revert your system if malware manages to slip through.
How we chose the top multiple device antivirus services
Good antivirus software is hard to come by. To ensure we only recommended the best of the best, our top antivirus apps had to meet the following criteria:
- Delivered impressive results in our latest antivirus testing
- Has minimal impact on your system’s performance
- Can be run on at least three devices simultaneously
- Supports PC and Mac, ideally with support for mobile devices too
- Offers additional privacy features aside from malware-scanning
- Is fairly-priced, with either a fully-featured trial or money-back guarantee
The best antivirus software for multiple devices
Now, it’s time to take a closer look at the best antivirus apps of 2024 that support multiple devices. We’ll begin with our top recommendation, Norton 360:
Norton 360 is the best way antivirus to secure your entire household. Users can protect three, five, or 10 devices, depending on their subscription tier. All plans include a password manager, VPN, dark web monitoring service, and cloud backups in addition to the standard antivirus.
Norton Antivirus performed exceptionally well in our latest round of testing, detecting all manner of threats (including ransomware) and rarely returning false positives. Since then, it’s added a new feature that uses machine learning to make an educated guess at what malicious files actually do.
Norton 360 has monthly and annual plans with 14-day and 60-day money-back guarantees, respectively. Prices start at $6.99 USD per month. There’s even a protection promise, so if you get a virus that Norton is unable to remove, then you qualify for a full refund.
- Hardly slows your PC down at all
- Comprehensive protection
- Works on multiple operating systems
- Offers refunds if it can’t fix your problem
- Only the most expensive plan lets you pay monthly
- Antivirus-only subscription doesn’t let you protect multiple devices
BEST ANTIVIRUS APP:Norton 360 is fast, effective, and protects against all of the most common online threats. For even greater security, you can take advantage of dark web monitoring or identity theft protection. Every plan includes a risk-free money-back guarantee.
Read our full review of Norton Antivirus for more details.
Surfshark One is our budget pick. The company is best-known for its high-quality VPN, but it also offers its own antivirus software. Thanks to a generous long-term discount, it’s possible to protect up to five devices for just a few dollars per month. Best of all, the apps are very user-friendly and barely use any resources at all.
In our experience, Surfshark One Antivirus almost never returns false positives and does a great job of identifying threats. In addition to real-time protection and scheduled virus scans, it prevents attackers from targeting your system with zero-day exploits. It can prevent certain apps from using your camera and will alert you if your login credentials are leaked online.
Monthly plans are available, but we strongly recommend picking an annual or two-year term instead. These regularly include discounts of over 70 percent, which can cut the average monthly price as $3 or less. A 30-day guarantee lets you claim a refund if you’re not impressed.
- Lightweight apps
- Strong security at an affordable price
- Built with novices in mind
- Provides 24/7 customer service
- Not available on iOS
- Not as customizable as some of its rivals
BEST LOW-COST OPTION:Surfshark One Antivirus is a fantastic budget option, provided you choose a long-term plan upfront. Easy to use, with protection for up to five devices. What’s more, all plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Interested? Find out more with our complete Surfshark One review.
TotalAV is a great option for smaller households. It offers apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android systems, with plans allowing between three and six simultaneous installations. However, while its first-year pricing is among the cheapest we’ve seen, it increases significantly afterward. We’d recommend disabling automatic renewal to avoid nasty surprises when it’s time to renew.
On the plus side, this service has dramatically improved in recent years. We’ve seen it streamline its billing process, introduce new features (such as ransomware and spyware protection), and improve its threat-detection capabilities. It now comes bundled with a VPN, ad-blocker, and various system-optimization tools.
TotalAV’s Antivirus has monthly and annual plans, which include either a 14-day or 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Reliable antivirus capable of identifying the vast majority of threats
- Low introductory pricing
- Has worked hard to streamline the billing process and improve functionality
- Almost quadruples in price after the first year
- Have to contact staff directly to turn off auto-renewal
SMALL-SCALE SECURITY:TotalAV can protect between three and six of your devices for under $50 per year – just be sure to turn off automatic renewal! Strong performance, supports most devices, and offers a money-back guarantee on all plans.
Why not check out our detailed review of TotalAV?
McAfee has been a leading name in the antivirus market for over a decade and it’s easy to see why. It caught 100 percent of the malware samples we analyzed, had very little impact on our system’s CPU usage, and supported all major platforms, including Android and iOS. The Essential subscription protects up to five devices, with no limit on the Premium or Advanced plans.
As you might expect, McAfee Total Protection offers on-demand and scheduled system scanning, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. It also includes a password manager, identity monitoring, tracker-blocking, and scam protection features, plus a VPN. The more expensive plans even let you lock down your social media profiles with the touch of a button, keep an eye on your credit, or remove your personal data from the internet.
You can protect any number of devices for as little as $44.99 for the first year. There’s a 30-day free trial, and if you sign up for a paid plan, any unused time will be added to your subscription length. Finally, McAfee has a protection pledge, offering a full refund if your device gets a virus that it can’t remove.
- One of the few services that will happily secure every device you own
- Very good at identifying malware
- All-in-one online protection
- Relatively slow system scanning
- Antivirus not available on its own
UNLIMITED DEVICES:McAfee Total Protection makes it easy to protect lots of devices at once. It’s fairly affordable, comes bundled with a huge range of security tools, and even has a generous trial period, so there’s no harm in trying it out.
Check out our full McAfee Antivirus review.
Bitdefender is a well-respected antivirus appWith its Family Pack subscription, users can secure up to 15 Android, iOS, Windows, or Mac systems simultaneously. In our tests, it not only deleted every piece of malware we had installed on our system, but even blocked the website we downloaded it from – not bad at all!
That’s not all it has to offer. Bitdefender includes ransomware and web-attack protection, anti-phishing tools, Bitdefender VPN, microphone and webcam blocking, and more. It can even boot the system in rescue mode, allowing it to remove even the most stubborn viruses. Unlike many of its rivals, Bitdefender has live chat-based support. That’s a huge advantage, since it’s almost always the quickest way to resolve problems.
Bitdefender’s Family Pack has one, two, and three-year subscriptions. These all come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Low resource usage
- Makes it as easy as possible to get help
- High device limit
- Minimal discount on the three-year plan
- Security concerns around SafePay feature
COMPREHENSIVE SECURITY:Bitdefender comes packed full of powerful security features and does an exceptional job of removing tricky viruses. With 24/7 support and a 30-day guarantee, there really isn’t much more you could ask for.
Take a look at our complete Bitdefender antivirus review.
Methodology: How we picked the best multi-device antivirus apps
In addition to making sure they can protect all of your devices, our team personally tests each app and evaluates its performance across multiple categories. Here’s an overview of what we look for:
- Multi-platform support: Which platforms does this app support and how many devices can be secured at once? Ideally, it’d have its own apps for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, with minimal differences in functionality across platforms.
- Malware-detection: Our team sandboxes several malware samples and checks whether they’re detected by the antivirus. We also look into whether they block suspicious downloads, check archived files, or remove potentially unwanted programs.
- Extra functionality: Malware is just one digital threat. We’re big fans of antiviruses with their own VPN, password management tools, or firewall. Some even come bundled with personal data deletion or identity theft-protection services, so it pays to shop around.
- Performance: Does running a virus scan slow your PC to a crawl? Our experts monitor system performance to find out how long scans take on average, and how much of an impact they have on your system.
- Simplicity: You shouldn’t need to be a computer expert to use these apps. We’re big fans of beginner-friendly setup wizards, automatic updates, and simplified settings menus. Really, anything that lowers the bar to entry is a huge win.
- Value: Is the service fairly-priced? Are there any discounts for long-term subscriptions or multi-device coverage? Is there a free plan and is it even worth using? Is there a money-back guarantee you can use to get a refund if this service isn’t right for you
This is a broad overview of our process. We break down exactly how Comparitech separates the best antivirus programs from the rest in our testing methodology post.
Virus protection: Frequently Asked Questions
Am I completely protected if I have an antivirus program?
If you choose a reputable antivirus program, keep it updated, and run regular scans, you’re already doing better than most people as far as security is concerned. However, even the best antiviruses aren’t infallible. Hackers are constantly creating new types of malware and finding ways to avoid detection.
Believe it or not, you’re a threat too. Your antivirus can’t do anything if you decide to remove a harmful file from quarantine or ignore its warnings. That’s why we recommend following your antivirus’ recommendations and seeking a second opinion before running any file that has previously been flagged as potentially malicious.
Will an antivirus app slow down my computer?
Antivirus apps actually do quite a bit of work behind the scenes. For instance, even if they don’t seem to be doing anything, they could be analyzing files for signs of suspicious activity, checking your downloads against lists of known viruses, or fixing other vulnerabilities in your system.
Now, since your antivirus app is effectively running 24/7, it will use some system resources that would normally be assigned to other things. However, antivirus manufacturers know that slowing down a user’s system is a great way to get their apps uninstalled. As such, these apps generally have a much lower impact than they used to. Some even come with their own tune-up software that can refresh your PC to bring it back up to peak performance.
Is antivirus software still necessary?
Nobody expects that they’ll be targeted, but the truth is that there were more than 10 million malware attacks in 2022 alone. The simple fact is that everybody needs a reliable antivirus app, since even Mac and Linux systems are susceptible to malware these days. It only takes one mistake for ransomware to lock down your device, so why take the chance?
On the plus side, software companies are rapidly developing apps for platforms that have previously been neglected, like Android, MacOS, and iOS. What’s more, they’re increasingly coming bundled with additional privacy tools like VPNs and identity-theft prevention services.
How did my computer get a virus?
First things first: if you see a popup on the internet telling you that your computer has a virus, don’t click it or contact the number it provides. This is the first step in a tech support scam.
If your antivirus program has detected malware, that’s a different story. In these situations, it can be difficult to tell how your device was initially infected. First, think back to when the problem first started. Had you installed any new programs? If so, it’s possible that this was the cause, but you may just have clicked a link in a sketchy email or clicked a fake download button without realizing.
The best way to prevent this from happening again is to educate yourself on common threats such as phishing and identifying unsafe websites. You may also want to install an ad-blocker – these not only declutter your browser, but also prevent some of the most common tactics hackers use to grab your attention.
Can I get an antivirus for Windows and Android?
Absolutely! In fact, the vast majority of antivirus software is designed with Windows in mind. Android is the most popular mobile operating system in the world, so it’s only natural that companies would start porting their software to this platform too. Services like Norton 360 and Surfshark antivirus are available on every major platform, including Android phones and Windows PCs.
Are there any antivirus apps for Mac and iOS?
Lots of people mistakenly believe that Macs can’t get viruses. It’s true that most viruses specifically target Windows systems, but the reality is that any device can be compromised. That’s why antivirus services like TotalAV, Norton 360, and McAfee Total Protection have their own apps for MacOS and iPhone.