Did Avast win the latest AV-Comparatives?
AV-Comparatives is one of the most respected antivirus comparison tests in the world and is performed twice a year. The latest test results were published over the weekend and we did very, very well. Although they never name an overall winner, I think if they did do so, we would have been the overall winner. At a minimum we handily beat virtually all of the premium products. This time around 16 products were tested including Symantec/Norton, McAfee, AVG, Avira, and Kaspersky.
AV-Comparatives is an interesting test because it measures all three elements a user should be looking at to choose the right AntiVirus product—the ability to detect malware; the ability to not falsely detect malware; and speed. So, the best product is not necessarily the one with the best detection—it is the one with the best blend of these three elements. These elements can be mutually exclusive and it is very hard to get top scores in each category. Products that detect a lot of malware can over-detect and have a lot of false positives which severely hinders users. A low number of false positives can imply a poor ability to detect malware. And it is very easy to do nothing very fast but increasing speed tends to lower the ability to detect malware.
AV-Comparatives assigns each product one of four scores: A+, A, Standard, and Tested (a nice euphemism for failed). To get an A+ one has to have 97% detection and fewer than 15 false positives.
This time around, we were the only AV product to score in the top-5 in each category (and no, that does not mean we were 5th in each category). We were #5 in Detection, #2 in False Positives, and #1 in Speed.
So, were we the best overall? I think so. Check out the results for yourselves and make your own decision: www.av-comparatives.org. To find the report, click on the "On Demand Comparative August 2009" link near the top right of the page.
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