BitDefender Internet Security 2015 review
OS Support: Windows XP SP3, Vista SP2, 7 SP1, 8, 8.1, Minimum CPU: 1.6GHz, Minimum GPU: N/A, Minimum RAM: 1GB, Hard disk space: 1GB
BitDefender Internet Security returns in its 2015 guise with an overhauled interface and some minor updates to improve system. It's also now one of many suites that gives you a secure way of entering passwords and financial information without the need for typing, so that a keylogger on your computer can’t steal your data.
Last year's edition performed admirably well when protecting against malware, but this year things have sadly taken a dive. It was only able to fully defend against 49 threats, with a further 28 neutralised after they had started to do damage. Most worryingly, 23 threats bypassed BitDefender completely, wreaking havoc on our test system. Its final weighted protection score was 83 out of 300.
It's a shame that its anti-virus performance isn't up to scratch because the software itself is among the best we've seen. The overhauled design is a classy, minimalist Windows 8-style tiled interface and is, for the most part, very intuitive.
The Protection menu is the real meat of BitDefender, with three types of system scans including one that looks for vulnerabilities in your system. On our PC it found four programs that weren't updated to their latest version, giving each one a vulnerability rating. Unsurprisingly, it labelled our out-dated Flash player as a high-importance update.
One area where BitDefender performs well is its recognition of legitimate software. Of a possible 846 points in our legitimate software tests, it scored 836 and didn't dismiss a single piece of software out-of-hand.
^ BitDefender's protection menu shows all of your security options in one place
While BitDefender's layout is very attractive, it differs quite significantly from its rivals because there's no one centralised settings area, with various options scattered all over the place. For instance, you'll only find virus scan settings in the Protection menu. In a way this makes logical sense because settings for virus scans are found in the virus scanning area, but ultimately it makes finding the setting you're looking more difficult than placing it in a single Settings area.
^ BitDefender shows you which programs are slowing down your PC at startup
There are plenty of additional tools found in the aptly named Tools menu. These include a "OneClick Optimizer" that follows the increasing trend of "junk removal". There's also a separate tool which times how long your PC takes to boot, letting you know which programs are holding you up when you switch on at the start of the day. A disk defragmenter, file shredder, registry tools and a duplicate file finder completes the extensive set of tools and there's even a sandboxed browser called Safepay (similar to Kaspersky's Safe Money) that lets you to make transactions securely.
BitDefender is a well-designed and fully-featured security suite. However, Norton Internet Security 2015 matches it in terms of features and thoroughly beat it in terms of malware protection, so in the long term you'll be better off choosing one of them.