6 best antivirus to use with VPN for a secure network

Tashreef Shareef
by Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
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  • Enhanced levels of network security can be easily obtained when your antivirus and the VPN work together.
  • In that regard, don’t hesitate to try out BullGuard or other suggestions from below.
  • Don’t stop your searches here. This VPN Software section is waiting for you with more guides.
  • Bookmark our Antivirus Software Hub too if you frequently look for similar antivirus tools.
Antivirus to use with VPN for a secure network

If you have a VPN client installed on your PC, you may also want to install an Antivirus program to protect your PC against viruses and malware.

While there are a good number of antivirus software available for computers, it is important to install the antivirus tool that does not cause any issue with your VPN client.

Unfortunately, some antivirus solutions may block your VPN connection. If this happens to you too, use this troubleshooting guide to fix the problem.

VPN clients protect your computer from being injected with malware while visiting a third-party website and even protect your data using encryption.

Antivirus tools, on the other hand, work by keeping a record of all the known viruses utilizing the hash value of any file.

It is always recommended to use an antivirus with your PC. If you have a VPN client running, it will act as an added layer of protection against online threats and data theft.

That said, some antivirus may not work as expected with a VPN Client. This can be due to several reasons and one of the common reasons is the blocking of VPN connection by antivirus programs.

In antivirus software‘s defense, the programs are designed to prevent and block unknown connections from and to the PC. However, this can become annoying if the connections are blocked too often.

One way to resolve this error is to add your VPN connection to the exception list in your antivirus settings, or you can install an antivirus that can deal with VPN connections without any trouble.

Today, in this article, we will walk you through the best antivirus solution to use with a VPN on the computer.

Most of these antiviruses come with a free trial or even free plans with limited features, so make sure you take them for a spin before committing.

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What's the best antivirus to use with VPN?

get BullGuard

BullGuard is a popular multi-layer security software tool. However, not all users are aware of the fact that it can be easily used with VPNs too.

BullGuard’s unbeatable protection usually runs in the background and never interferes with the VPN of your choice.

Quite the opposite, they work together in order to ensure that the network itself is safe and protected against any sort of intruder.

Moreover, since this is a leading antivirus, it successfully prevents all potential digital attacks in the forms of viruses, malware, ransomware, and not only.

These are some key features that BullGuard brings to the table:

  • Three layers of protection
  • Powerful filters for online content
  • Advanced anti-phishing features
  • CPU Performance Optimization
  • Secure Browser feature 
  • PC and mobile security
BullGuard

BullGuard

Our top antivirus to use with VPN is none other than BullGuard. That's your chance to try it out right away!

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Read our full BullGuard review


get Bitdefender

From tech reviewers to countless users, Bitdefender is also a top choice when it comes to antivirus software tools that not only provide effective protection against malware but also work with VPN clients.

Bitdefender comes with its own VPN client integrated that offers up to 200 MB of traffic daily. You also get file encryption, ransomware protection, and a game mode.

With complete real-time data protection, advanced threat defense, web attack prevention, anti-fraud, and rescue mode, Bitdefender comes with all the essential features to protect your PC from malware.

The initial disk scan is slow and can take a good amount of time to complete. The file scanning engines compare any suspicious files with its database and put it in quarantine.

From here, the user can delete or restore the file. If you feel the antivirus is affecting your PC’s performance, it allows you to turn off some of its security modules one by one.

Although, we recommend it to be kept in autopilot mode for better protection.

Bitdefender Total Security maintains a perfect balance between performance, features, protection, and price making it an affordable yet practical choice for many.

Major key features that you’re about to enjoy:

  • Provides excellent protection
  • Minimal impact on system performance
  • Hardened browser feature
  • Multiple platform support
  • Affordable antivirus software choice
Bitdefender Total Security

Bitdefender Total Security

Bitdefender Total Security offers complete protection for PC and mobile. You can easily use it with a VPN too!

$44.99/year Visit website

Read our full Bitdefender review


get Kaspersky

Kaspersky Lab Antivirus is another complete security solution that comes with a top-notch security feature to keep your computer protected from viruses and online threats.

Kaspersky can protect your PC as well as your smartphones /tablets using the mobile app. The user interface is simple, and the impact on system performance is minimal which makes it ideal to run on low-end PCs.

It comes with all the essential features including Parental Controls, a hardened browser, anti-spam, virtual keyboard, and firewall.

There is a free version of the software available with limited features but is suitable for anyone looking for temporary and basic security options.

Kaspersky has three modules that work round the clock to detect any suspicious files.

The first one is file-signature scanning that matches any suspicious files with its database of known threats, behavioral monitoring keeps a tab on abnormal behavior from files and programs and the cloud-based analysis.

The virus detection engines do an excellent job of catching up to 98% of malware and viruses without any false positive identification that may otherwise result in the deletion of important files.


Want to avoid false-positive antivirus alerts? Here’s a list with top tools that you may use.


You can turn off any unnecessary security modules manually from the Protection page that gives access to File-anti-virus, web anti-virus, application control, firewall, private browsing, webcam protection, and software updates options.

If you feel the Kaspersky Total Security is a memory hog, opt for the lighter Anti-virus version of the same which is less expensive but offers fewer features.

For all the features on offer, we can easily recommend Kaspersky Total Security and Antivirus to the users who are looking for a multi-device affordable anti-malware software.

Pros:

  • Almost perfect antivirus protection
  • Password manager and an on-screen keyboard to mask the password
  • Good parental controls
  • Minimal impact on performance

Download Kaspersky Total Security now 

get Heimdal Thor

Heimdal Security is relatively a new company that makes Thor antivirus software for computers. It was founded in 2011 hence as other older security companies on our list.

Heimdal offers three versions of Thor antivirus software that you can check in the price section.

Heimdal Thor offers complete protection to the users ranging from anti-malware protection to Internet security, and it comes equipped with most of the essential features including a DarkLayer Guard feature.

The DarkLayer Guard feature can detect threats at DNS, HTTP, HTTPS layers before they can reach your device.

Vector Detection feature will autonomously detect and prevent malware infections. It can find hidden malware in your system and delete or block it immediately.

The X-Plot Resilience feature can auto-update apps and prevent any exploitation of your data.

Heimdal Thor is a new security software no doubt, but it can detect malware and viruses effectively without slowing down your computer.

Download the free trial that offers 30 days access and later upgrade to the premium version if it meets your requirement.

Download Heimdal Thor now

get Eset NOD32 Antivirus

With a user base of over 100 million, Eset is among the most popular Anti-virus companies around and Eset NOD32 antivirus is the legendary program offered by the company for a long time now.

Eset NOD32 focuses on the core tasks of removing and detecting malware and viruses from the computer; as a result, it comes with fewer features compared to the competition.

Therefore, features such as password manager, file shredder, and similar aren’t included. The software can detect and block ransomware, PowerShell access, and exploits with great accuracy.

The Device Control feature limits the risk of contamination when other devices are connected to the infected device via Bluetooth or USB.

Other features offered by Eset NOD32 include UEFI scanner that checks your PCs firmware for viruses, new profile settings, and the ability to fine-tune your security.

The scanning time depends on whether you use the quick scan or full scan. The smart scan makes sure that all the newly added files are scanned and while ignoring the already scanned files.

Eset NOD32 can be used by both the beginners due to its ease of use, but it’s also great for advanced because it allows them to fine-tune their security settings.

Pros:

  • Minimal impact on system performance
  • Above-average malware detection
  • Gaming and Video modes
  • Multi-device license
  • Complete Device Control

Download Eset NOD32 now

get Norton Antivirus

If you want a lightweight antivirus that can protect your PC at a basic level, Norton AntiVirus Basic is a good choice.

It is among the top-quality anti-malware software offering industry level protection powered by one of the largest threat monitor networks in the world.

Norton AntiVirus Basic can help you defend against ransomware, spyware, malware, viruses, and other online threats like phishing attacks with options like URL blocker, etc.

You can perform a custom scan, quick scan, or schedule the scan at your convenience. The scheduled scanning process won’t start if your laptop is running on battery unless you manually start it.

Norton’s AntiVirus Basic is easy to use but it doesn’t lack features that may compromise your computer’s security. It is a highly rated anti-malware software when it comes to threat detection and virus removal.

Pros:

  • Up-to-date malware database
  • Excellent virus detection and prevention
  • Minimal impact on performance
  • Reliable browser extension

Download Norton suite by Symantec now

Most of these antiviruses should work with your VPN client without any issues. Have you used any of these antiviruses before? Do let us know your pick in the comments below.

FAQ: Learn more about antivirus/VPN protection

  • Can you still get a virus with a VPN?

Using a great VPN with enhanced security is known to prevent your Wi-Fi provider to inject malicious codes into your browsing sessions.

However, a VPN can’t protect you against viruses by itself.

  • Is antivirus or VPN better?

Instead of turning this into a competition, look for the best antivirus tools to use with a VPN. After all, do keep in mind that they are designed to work together.

  • Which antivirus includes a VPN?

Bitdefender Total Security comes with its own VPN client integrated. For similar solutions, refer to this list of best antivirus software tools with free VPN.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in August 2019 and has been since revamped and updated in June 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.