7 Best Open Source Antivirus for Windows 10/11 & Mac

by Radu Tyrsina
Radu Tyrsina
Radu Tyrsina
CEO & Founder
Radu Tyrsina has been a Windows fan ever since he got his first PC, a Pentium III (a monster at that time). For most of the kids of... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • Using open-source antivirus will benefit anyone that requires transparent security against digital viruses. 
  • This type of antivirus software can be used for personal security needs or business requirements from organizations. 
  • You can highly benefit from advanced malware protection and other types of security matters using open-source tools. 
  • In this guide, you will learn more about open-source protection software and free antivirus tools available right now. 
Best open-source antivirus software
ESET Antivirus comes with all the security tools that you may ever need to protect your data and privacy, including:

  • Anti-theft support
  • Webcam protection
  • Intuitive setup and UI
  • Multi-platform support
  • Banking-level encryption
  • Low system requirements
  • Advanced anti-malware protection

An antivirus program needs to be fast, efficient, and cost-effective, and this one has them all.

Open-source antivirus software can help you protect your PC against all the digital threats on the web.

Experienced developers and research experts in the antivirus, network security, and computer security fields will know best the meaning of open-source software.

An open-source antivirus denotes a program for which the original source code is made available for free, and it may be modified and redistributed.

There are a few open-source antivirus software on the market that will bring you trustworthy security from all kinds of viruses or malware.

Such types of security software will benefit the users with advanced protection for different segments. Namely, you have open-source antivirus and firewall, spyware attacks or ransomware, email threats scanning, or software that contain malware

Furthermore, you can defend your PC from multiple dangers that include virus distribution through emails and file attachments.

You can encounter advanced email scams created with social engineering strategies meant to access sensitive financial or personal data.

Taking this into account, using open-source software specialized for virus detection or email phishing threats will greatly support you to safeguard your computer.

BEST ANTIVIRUS WE RECOMMEND

What is an open-source antivirus?

An open-source antivirus is basically a security software developed by multiple programmers that constantly improve the source code.

These types of antivirus tools can be used for free to protect your PC from various online threats like malware or spyware.

The advantage of using an open-source antivirus is constant improvements made by the software engineers or even users.

Is there any open-source antivirus?

There are not so many antivirus tools with open-source code, so unfortunately you can’t find a variety of options to employ.

In fact, you have the ideal solution among the few antivirus tools of this type. ClamAV is the open-source antivirus created to protect your Windows or Mac device and detect advanced malware or virus threats.

  • Scans files quickly in your system
  • On-access scanning for modern Linux versions
  • Blocks programs access until scanning
  • Trusted signature definitions
  • Scans within archives and compressed files
  • Not very intuitive installation

ClamAV is an open-source virus scanner (GPLv2) software engine targeted at detecting viruses, Trojans, malware, and other kinds of malicious threats.

This completely free antivirus is specifically created to scan and detect email viruses or scan your files quickly. It offers real-time protection for modern versions of Linux operating systems.

You can successfully detect various malware types, mobile viruses, phishing attempts, or Microsoft Office macro viruses.

Plus, it can prevent programs or files to infect your PC with the capability of scanning files before installing them.

The tool includes a multi-threaded scanner daemon and command-line utilities for on-demand file scanning and also for automatic signature updates

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • The open-source standard for mail gateway scanning programs
  • Supports various file formats, file and archive unpacking, and various signature languages
  • Suitable for web scanning, email scanning, and endpoint security as well
  • The virus database is updated multiple times a day

Is open-source software a security risk?

The proper answer to this question would be that it depends on the case. You can find effective open-source antivirus software to fully secure your PC from infected downloads online or malware.

At the same time, it’s possible to utilize open-source antiviruses for multiple security needs, such as spam threats, phishing attacks through emails, malicious websites or URLs, banking data attacks, and so on.

There are certain security flaws you should be aware of when you utilize open-source tools.

For instance, it can be an opportunity for hackers and attackers to exploit the software. The fact that any individual can modify the public code of the software is a vulnerability for users as well.

The attackers can access all the information about the software and exploit it for personal benefits.

Another security risk can be the difficulty of tracking open-source software updates or fixes, as they are spread across multiple websites.

Main advantages and disadvantages of open-source software

You can have certain benefits from open-source antiviruses in order to safeguard your system. For a better understanding, they are as follows:

➡ Open-source tools convince with transparent data for anyone to see

➡ The security issues are patched or fixed quickly

➡ Open-source tools are constantly examined by the community

➡ Extensive flexibility for users

➡ The open-source software with active communities is more sustainable

Even though you can rely on some antivirus solutions, there are a few weakness points you should know about:

➡ The code of the software is made public to any user.

➡ Open-source antivirus is built by volunteers or programmers without fixed schedules.

➡ Cybercriminals can profit from the security concerns with false open-source tools.

➡ The open-source antivirus is difficult to be maintained on the cloud.

Even if you don’t find many alternatives for open-source antivirus tools, you can utilize ClamAV for reliable guarding against email viruses, malicious websites, or endpoint issues.

That being said, you can benefit from free antivirus tools capable to safeguard your system efficiently using market-leading security tools.

We gathered the best free antivirus programs to help you decide which one is the most ideal for your needs.

What is the best free open-source antivirus?

Bitdefender Free – best free antivirus overall

  • Free to use antivirus protection
  • Strong antivirus security against the latest malware
  • Browsing safety against phishing attempts
  • Ransomeware guarding tools
  • Behavioral app monitoring
  • Intuitive user interface and UX
  • Resource consuming requirements

This award-winning antivirus by Bitdefender is a real-time threat detection that runs smoothly in the background with minimum resources.

You can employ such reliable antivirus to resolve any cybersecurity issues like ransomware, spyware, or virus infection on your PC.

Plus, have a powerful detection rate for suspicious websites or executable files from your PC with complete scan engines.

This free antivirus is perfectly suited for high-resource processes on your system, such as video editing or gaming, because of its low impact on system resources.

In addition, benefit from security tools against internet fraud activities like phishing attacks or website suspicious behavior.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Web filtering technology
  • Advanced Threat defense
  • Bitdefender Photon to save resources and improve the speed
  • Global Protective Network
  • Multi-layered ransomware protection
  • Vulnerability assessment
  • Autopilot for Security Advisor

Consider this industry-standard antivitus software to highly enhance your system health and performance without slowing down the computer.

Kaspersky – best for PC optimization

  • Advanced antivirus technology
  • Performance optimization for better speed
  • Free subscription for 3 PCs for one year
  • Privacy-oriented functionalities
  • Most awarded antivirus protection
  • Free-version limitations

Kaspersky antivirus is free-to-use software that entirely safeguards your PC against multiple threats from your digital environment.

This complete solution offers protection from both common threats like spyware or malware and more complex virus types like fileless attacks.

Plus, you have reliable protection against phishing attacks and elaborated social engineering threats present online.

You can therefore secure your digital presence against advanced email scams, malicious websites, and all types of malware out there.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Optimized system performance
  • High protection functionalities
  • Online banking or shopping data protection
  • Simple to use interface
  • Available for Windows, Mac, or mobile devices

With Kaspersky antivirus tools, you’re secured against advanced malware or spyware attacks, so you don’t need to hesitate about it.

Avira Free Antivirus – best for virus or malware detection

  • Antivirus security from ransomware or spyware attacks
  • Free VPN to hide your online activities
  • Browser tracking ad-blocker
  • Anti-scam protection
  • Password Manager
  • Digital traces cleaning feature
  • Only compatible with Windows 7 and later versions

Avira is another great security tool that will keep you safe from viruses, malware, and other types of cyberattacks, thanks to multilayered security.

The antivirus comes with a built-in VPN that will ensure your data stays private and nobody finds out your IP address, location, and identity.

More so, the program is absolutely free, not using any ads and other annoying popups. Simply install it and never worry about intrusive advertisements or offers.

Some of Avira’s core features include:

  • Advanced AI and machine learning
  • Cross-platform compatibility
  • Real-time protection and updates
  • Light on the system’s resources
  • Fast scanning

By choosing the complete antivirus tools from Avira, you will be relaxed about new emerging malware or virus threats out there.

Panda Security – best for lightweight security

  • Complete malware detection ratio
  • Multimedia and Gaming mode
  • Powerful Android protection without slowing it down
  • Privacy Auditor for your apps permissions
  • Free VPN protection
  • Limited free version capabilities

Panda Security is free cloud-based software that offers complete antivirus security for your Windows, Mac, and Android gadgets.

Firstly, you should find out about the highest virus detection rate and malware/spyware removal tools. You can schedule regular scans on your system and perform them when you need to.

With USB virus security, any user can prevent malware threats or hacking tactics with automatic execution from USB drives.

You will also benefit from Panda Rescue Kit created to restore your system from virus infections and boot the PC from a clean USB drive.

Regarding Android and Mac devices, the software offers real-time protection against digital threats and scans your apps or programs before installation.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • No impact on system resources
  • Firewall support for Windows devices
  • Wi-Fi network protection
  • Scans USB drives and external devices

Benefit from all the valuable security functionalities and secure all desktop and mobile devices with Panda Free Antivirus.

Avast – most known for high network protection

  • Cloud-light and free virus protection
  • 6 layers security engine
  • Wi-Fi network protection
  • Pop-ups or ads blocking
  • Smart scan to detect all types of malware
  • Clever threat-detection for ransomware and spyware threats
  • Extra fees for other benefits like VPN security

With Avast Free Antivirus you can have innovative and latest security tools in order to defend your PC from dangerous online threats.

This antivirus comes with a high detection rate and scans every program or software before installing it into your system.

With the CyberCapture feature, you can analyze every file on your computer in the cloud and erase the ones that contain malware or phishing threats.

You can as well detect the vulnerable points in your network connection and prevent attackers to compromise your PC or steal sensitive information.

Let’s look at its main features:

  • Blocks viruses and advanced malware
  • Detect malicious and fake website
  • Blocks remote access attacks
  • 30 days money-back guarantee
  • Compatible with Windows, Mac, and mobile systems

Avast security solution will benefit any user with high detection rates and multi-layered protection from digital threats.

AVG Antivirus Free – best for scam email defense

  • Malware protection with 6 layers of security
  • Email scams shield
  • Enhanced firewall security
  • Webcam protection tools
  • High anti-ransomware protection
  • Blocking hacking attacks on your PC
  • It can slow down your device

AVG Antivirus Free is a highly awarded antivirus solution designed to secure any PC from Internet threats, ransomware, or hijacking attempts.

Using this free antivirus you have unlimited security against risky threats present online, such as viruses and spyware or email phishing attacks.

You can cover your digital presence and avoid dangerous email attacks with the web shield and email shield tools.

Plus, assure your Internet security for maximum protection against ransomware and different scams created to infect the PC and steal important personal data.

You should also know that you’re able to stop a billion cyberattacks using competitive threat detection network tools with AVG Antivirus.

Let’s look at its main features:

  • Ransomware and webcam safeguarding
  • Phishing attacks detection engine
  • Android antivirus protection for mobiles
  • Real-time updates from an extensive virus database

You can employ AVG antivirus tools without a doubt and defend your system against emerging ransomware or malware threats.

Emsisoft Anti-Malware Home – best for increased scanning capability

  • Dual engine scanner for high virus detection
  • Real-time files protection tool
  • Web and browser protection
  • Signature-based or exploit attack detection
  • New emerging threats behavior detection
  • Can impact the PC system resources

Emsisoft Anti-Malware is innovative antivirus software that will constantly monitor your system and detect any unusual programs or activities.

This antivirus solution promises comprehensive security against digital dangers, such as ransomware attacks from unpatched software or corrupted bots, banking trojans, and many more.

You have strong security regarding personal web activities and constant guarding regarding malicious websites and links. Using the browser extension, you’ll be alerted about every suspected website.

Last but not least, Emsisoft antivirus defends you from email phishing attacks and secures personal or sensitive data from elaborated dangers.

Let’s look at its main features:

  • Protection from unsafe websites and links
  • Portable Emergency Kit
  • Anti-phishing emails guarding
  • Latest virus behavior detection
  • A management console for all your devices

Hence, if you require advanced antivirus technology to guard your device against harmful malware, this free antivirus deserves a try.

These are some of the most known open-source antivirus programs that you can currently find out there.

Plus, we included in this guide both free antivirus software and the best open-source antivirus for Windows 11,10, 7, and Mac devices.

Speaking of such programs, we have a thorough list of antivirus software with lifetime licenses for you to check out. All of them are great, offering robust sets of features.

If you have any other suggestions for this list, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments section below.

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  • Top-notch anti-malware protection

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