Kaspersky Antivirus is banned in the US – here are 3 superb alternatives

Image credit: Kaspersky (Image credit: Kaspersky)

Kaspersky, a popular Russian antivirus software provider, has been banned in the US. After years of speculation, investigation, and downright controversy about the company, the Biden administration finally put through the bill to ban the sale of Kaspersky on Thursday, June 20.

The ban, which also extends to security updates being provided on the platform, will take full effect from September 29, when updates will no longer be available to current users of the software. 

Whether you're a long-term Kaspersky user or have only recently picked up a copy, the news may have come as something of a shock, especially given how long they've already avoided this frankly inevitable outcome.

So, to help you find your next antivirus, we've collected some of the best alternative antivirus software you can pick up, which all come with not only a suite of features but, in some cases, some of the best VPNs available, too.

The 3 best Kaspersky alternatives

Without further ado, here are are top recommendations to replace Kaspersky. They're all tried and tested security suites that are legal in the US, and offer reliable protection.

1. Surfshark One

Okay, before you say it, I'm aware Surfshark isn't primarily an antivirus. However, despite being one of the best cheap VPNs, Surfshark also provides some pretty nifty services to keep your devices safe from unwanted malware.

First and foremost, Surfshark's antivirus is constantly kept up-to-date with the latest threats, updating its database every three hours to ensure it knows what you're at risk from. Plus, with 24/7 malware protection, real-time checks, and customization options including file exclusions, schedulable scans, and options for quick or full scans, you never need to think about leaving your computer unprotected.

Alongside the antivirus protection on offer, Surfshark also offers features such as webcam protection and, of course, an impressive VPN experience. If you're worried about falling victim to online attacks or having your personal data online compromised by data breaches, a VPN serves as a great way to add another layer of security to your online activity. 

Surfshark One

Surfshark One – VPN and antivirus from $2.69/month
Surfshark antivirus is among the best alternatives to traditional antivirus software. Offering real-time scanning, 24/7 protection, and a wealth of customization options, Surfshark antivirus is a great choice to keep you protected. 

Plus, with 83% off its normal price, you're getting a wealth of protection, plus one of the best VPNs, for under $73, for two whole years, making this deal an absolute bargain.

2. NordVPN Threat Protection Pro

Another industry-leading VPN with a more than capable security suite. NordVPN's antivirus protection, Threat Protection Pro, offers a complete suite of features to help keep your online and downloaded activity safe, but lacks one of the key areas offered by its Surfshark competition, file scanning. 

While NordVPN's offering does provide an impressive level of checking at the point of download, it lacks the capability to fully scan your computer for threats at any time, something which Surfshark offers at multiple levels, and with options for scheduling, so quite a notable miss. 

Despite this, NordVPN's Threat Protection Pro still offers a high standard of protection for your device. Features such as malicious website blocking, tracker and ad blocking and URL trimming ensure your online activity is kept protected no matter what you're looking for, while virus scanning, double extension detection and cloud-based threat detection all ensure your downloads aren't going to end up compromising your computer. 

NordVPN Plus

NordVPN Plus – VPN and antivirus from $4.39/month
While NordVPN's Protection Pro antivirus solution lacks some of the key features available from competition such as Surfshark, it still provides an impressive level of threat protection and prevention when searching online and downloading files to your computer. 

What's more, with 68% off the normal price, you can access all of NordVPN's security features, including a top-notch VPN service, for a price that puts most traditional antivirus software to shame. 

3. Bitdefender

If you're looking for a more traditional antivirus solution, Bitdefender is more than likely what you'll be looking for. While it may lack the added benefits of plans provided by the likes of NordVPN and Surfshark, most notably a VPN, Bitdefender takes the win by a clear margin in terms of security features.

Coming packed full of features such as multi-layered ransomware protection, an independent firewall, and even a file shredder, Bitdefender goes above and beyond what we've normally seen from other antivirus software offering a more top-level experience.

What's more, despite the service being incredibly capable, the user experience was not something we found to be overly complicated, offering an interface that even beginners wouldn't struggle to navigate. Plus, if you need services such as a VPN on a very rare occasion, Bitdefender does provide a VPN service you can use – even if you're limited to 200 MB a day of usage.


Bitdefender – antivirus from $20 for the first year
When it comes to traditional antivirus solutions, Bitdefender ranks top of our lists, and for good reasons. With a whole host of security features, and options to configure your plan to the security level you need, you'll never need to worry about being unprotected. 

Plus, with 50% off, Bitdefender can rival even some of the best VPN services in terms of value for security, even if the VPN you get with the software is much more lacking than you'd get from the likes of Surfshark or NordVPN.

Do I need a VPN or an antivirus?

While traditionally an antivirus would be the go-to solution for your computing security, nowadays the lines between VPNs and antivirus software are much more blurred. 

If you're looking primarily to detect and remove malicious software from your computer, an antivirus software will more than likely do the job you want just fine. However, if you're looking for a wider suite of security options, including the likes of alternate ID, password managers, and online threat detections, alongside your traditional security software, you may find a VPN better suits your needs. 

What's more, there is rarely much of a difference in value between the two options. With the increasing availability of top antiviruses and VPNs, there is an ongoing battle for the best value available, meaning you can get most of the top services for a matter of dollars per month, which is crazy cheap for the service you get!

Rob Dunne
Deals Editor

Rob is the Mobile and Broadband Deals Editor for TechRadar. Coming from years of experience working with phones on shop floors and giving customers the best deals on their tech, Rob is the dream adviser for readers looking to save money on top mobiles, accessories and broadband no matter what their needs are. Whether it's helpful information and expertise, niche benefits, or simply finding the best value for money, Rob has the know-how to guide you in the right direction towards your next tech endeavour. Outside of work, you'll find Rob on the tennis courts, in the gym, or diving into the biggest and best games of the year.