Webroot is a U.S.-based software company that began in Boulder, CO and is now headquartered in Broomfield, CO. The company was founded in 1997 by entrepreneur Steven Thomas, who launched a trace removal agent he named the Webroot Window Washer. In 2002, the company released a spyware blocking and removal product, and in 2006 they added anti-virus technology to their product suite. Since that time, Webroot has developed their services to further include mobile security, firewall protection, and other internet security features.

 

Rank Chart
Price
Security Quality
Our Score
#1
$24.99-44.99
7.3
#2
$39.99-69.99
6.3
#3
$39.99-69.99
5.8
#15
antivirus
$19.99-59.99
4.3

The Good

Webroot’s technology, which updates virus definitions from the cloud, provides lightweight security that doesn’t weigh down your computer like many other products do. This is because cloud-based protection uses very few system resources, keeping your computer free from interruptions or performance slowdowns. The company has racked up several awards for performance. Independent IT tests AV-Test and AV-Comparative have shown that Webroot anti-virus has a low system impact, allowing your computer to quickly install and run programs and browse the internet while using Webroot. This is all while providing protection against viruses, malware, phishing attacks, identity theft, cybercrime, and social network threats.

This company is a fabulous option for customers who play computer games. Webroot’s AntiVirus [sic] for PC Gamers package provides cloud security protection along with some features catered specifically for gamers. Users get password and data protection along with security for their gaming assets. Plus, the program runs silently in the background and is guaranteed to not interfere with game play by way of screen freezes, game lag, or crashes.

Webroot has a great money-back guarantee that comes with all of their products. After purchasing a subscription, customers have a full 70 days—longer than most companies offer— to receive a full refund.

The Bad

Webroot’s anti-virus provides email protection against malicious files and phishing links, but it doesn’t block spam. The spam blocker is commonly included in other anti-virus email protection systems. However, Webroot’s lack of anti-spam protection might not be an issue if your personal email program has a good spam filtering system.

Webroot offers a free trial download for their products, but the free trial period is half as long as that of most other companies—14 days instead of 30. However, this downside is well compensated by the 70-day money-back guarantee. Finally, while many companies offer 24/7 technical support for customers with a paid subscription, Webroot’s tech support is only available during their business hours.

The Bottom Line

This company is a good one to consider if computer speed is your priority, since it has received top marks in system performance. Webroot’s quality of protection seems to be about average, with decent IT testing scores. PC gamers will definitely want to test out the gamer anti-virus!

Price (*subject to change)

  • AntiVirus [sic] $39.99 (1 device, 1 year)
  • Internet Security Plus $44.99 (3 devices, 1 year)
  • Internet Security Complete $59.99 (5 devices, 1 year) covers PC, Mac, Android, iOS
  • Premier Mobile App $4.99 (1 device)
  • AntiVirus for PC Gamers $39.99 (1 device, 1 year)

Free trial offer

Webroot’s products are available to download for a 14-day free trial. Once a product is purchased, customers have a 70-day, full money-back guarantee.

Mobile protection

  • Call and SMS blocking
  • Scans apps and downloads for viruses and malware
  • Secure web browsing scans links and URL for threats
  • Alerts you when your device is vulnerable to attack
  • Syncs online passwords across all your devices
  • Antitheft remotely locates, locks, and wipes data from smartphones

Security

  • Anti-Phishing – Blocks fake websites that trick you into entering personal information; warns you of potentially fraudulent websites
  • Firewall – Firewall and network connection monitor prevent people from entering your network uninvited
  • Identity Protection – Secures identifying data at all times
  • Password Manager – Simplifies your life and protects your various login accounts with one master password to securely access all your accounts
  • Do Not Track – Eliminates traces of your online activity
  • Continuous Protection – Your data and identity are always protected while browsing, shopping, banking, and sharing
  • Social Network Protection – Warns you about suspicious links that could be malicious on Facebook and Twitter profiles and pages
  • System Device Protection – Analyzes devices and operating systems to detect malicious threats or other issues
  • Data Shredder – Webroot’s Secure Erase makes deleted files unrecoverable
  • Email Security – Blocks and notifies you of phishing sites and malicious files linked or attached in emails
  • Anti-Virus for Gamer  Features
    • Identity Protection and Anti-Phishing – Protects your passwords, personal data, and paid-for gaming assets, including games and virtual goods
    • Cloud Security – Security updates from the cloud means increased drive space and reduced access times
    • Speed Guarantee – Runs silently in the background with no notification pop-ups, screen freezes, game lag, or crashes. Users can get a full refund within 70 days if they are not convinced the product protects without impacting gameplay.

AV-Comparative/AV-Test

AV-Test’s 2013 results indicate that Webroot provides average protection from web and email threats. Webroot’s usability, or differentiation between real threats and false positives, proved excellent in one trial and fair in another. Webroot’s computer performance score was impressive—perfect as far as low system impact. This means that the computer the program tested on was able to quickly visit websites, download software, install and run programs, and copy data. AV-Comparative revealed similar performance results, giving Webroot the 2012 gold award for best overall speed/system performance.

Tune-up & Speed

Webroot’s Security Complete package includes a system optimizer that analyzes and optimizes your system much like tune-up programs do. This tool deletes unnecessary files that slow things down on your computer (such as temp files) and cleans registry streams.  As we mentioned, independent test results indicate that Webroot’s overall system impact is minimal, so the anti-virus product itself shouldn’t slow your computer down.

Foreign

The Webroot headquarters is in Broomfield, CO.

Customer Service

Webroot provides helpful, friendly customer assistance for prospective customers over the phone or through chat. Customers can receive technical support during business hours, Monday-Friday 7:00am-6:00pm MST.

System Requirements

  • 128 MB RAM
  • 10 MB hard disk space
  • Intel Pentium/Celeron Family, AMD K6/Athlon/Duron family, or other compatible processor

Operating Systems Supported

Mac

  • Mac OS X v.10.7.3 “Lion”
  • Mac OS X v.10.8 “Mountain Lion”
  • Mac OS X v. 10.9 “Mavericks”

PC (includes PC Gamer systems supported)

  • Microsoft Windows XP 32 and 64 bit SP2, SP3
  • Windows Vista 32-bit (all editions), Windows Vista SP1, SP2 32 and 64 bit (all editions)
  • Windows 7 32 and 64 bit (all editions), Windows 7 SP1 32 and 64 bit (all editions)
  • Windows 8 32 and 64 bit
  • Windows 8.1 32 and 64 bit

Mobile

  • 3 MB free storage space
  • Android 2.1 and up
  • iOS 4.2 or later

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