BullGuard Review

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Score 9

Threat Protection

  • 24/7 Protection- real-time scanning
  • Protection against: malware, spyware, ransomware, and phishing scams
  • Remote firewall protection
Plans & Prices:
  • Antivirus- $23.96
  • Internet security- $29.97
  • Premium protection- $39.98

Payment Methods

Intro

BullGuard is an antivirus software provider that was founded in 2001 by Morten Lund, a Danish entrepreneur based in Copenhagen, who has founded or co-invested in more than 100 high-tech startups in the last 15+ years. Currently, the company’s headquarters are based in London and its original founder isn’t even mentioned on the company website.

BullGuard makes it easy for users to protect their digital lives — from data to identity, all the way down to their Smart Homes. It showcases a strong understanding of users’ need for a complete protection suite covering all connected devices. BullGuard answers to that need by countering security threats as soon as they enter the digital realm, allowing users to feel perfectly comfortable in the digital world.

We’ll zoom in on all the features of BullGuard’s Premium Protection package in the review below.

During our research on antivirus software, we’ve identified five key criteria for you to consider when choosing an antivirus software: 1. Threat Protection 2. Resource consumption 3. 24/7 protection/real-time scanning 4. Extra protection features 5. Platforms/Devices accessibility. Our reviews will examine each antivirus software in accordance with how well it delivers on these five criteria.

How BullGuard meets the 5 criteria?

1. Threat Protection

Real-Time Protection
BullGuard’s Antivirus protection features include real-time protection. The Antivirus section of the suite includes different scan options, including the well-known quick scan and its counterpart, the full scan.

You can customize the settings too if you prefer, and schedule scans to happen outside your regular hours of activity.

Several additional options are available within the Antivirus protection, besides the different scan options that work on a continuous, real-time basis:

  • set default actions to handle suspicious files.
  • Set scanning preferences.
  • Enable safe browsing.

Spyware Protection
BullGuard’s Antivirus tools include heuristic detection (emulation, code analysis, and other techniques to detect malware) and spyware detection, both of which are active (‘On’) by default.

Anti-Phishing Protection
All of  BullGuard products (Antivirus, Internet Security, and Premium Protection) include anti-phishing protection, which is part of BullGuard’s multi-layered protection that blocks all types of malware from infecting your device.

Anti-Ransomware Protection
Another part of the multi-layered protection offered in the antivirus options of the BullGuard Premium Protection suite is its anti-ransomware protection. Innovation, a key aspect of BullGuard’s business, ensures users get the best protection against ransomware, but also against viruses, malware, and other online threats.

Anti-Malware Protection
BullGuard recently won AV-Comparatives prestigious Gold Malware Protection Award for its anti-malware protection that provides users intelligent ‘triple layer’ protection:
1. it recognizes trusted sites and applications.
2. it continually scans for malware-associated signatures and anomalies.
3. detected malware is locked down, quarantined and neutralized before any infection can take place.

Behavioral Engine
BullGuard’s behavioral engine is updated on a daily basis, which improves the overall accuracy of the engine and enables it to detect and block the latest threats.

2. Resource Consumption

Like most modern antivirus protection products, BullGuard’s Premium Protection suite comes with an extensive PC tune-up feature, which typically has the purpose of improving a PC’s performance. Most security suites are large software packages that can have an obvious effect on a PC’s general performance. By offering a tune up functionality, the security suite provides users the option to neutralize the effects of installing the security suite.

BullGuard Premium Protection offers another feature that will help improve a PC’s performance. Users are able to run scanning activities in so-called ‘low resource’ mode. It takes longer to execute a full system scan, but in general, a scan is not a process users follow actively anyway. It is supposed to run in the background – so why not activate the option to run the process with less resources allocated to it?

Based on our test results, BullGuard Premium Protection does not seem to have a huge impact on a PC’s performance – far from it. There’s hardly any effect on the available CPU power when BullGuard is running compared to when we shut down the program.

3. 24/7 Real-time Scanning

Unless you deliberately turn it off, BullGuard’s Antivirus Protection is always on, protecting your system real-time. You can change the level of security the real-time protection provides, although it is recommended to have it run with the highest security level and only lower that level when absolutely necessary. BullGuard real-time protection scans files, web traffic, and email, while the behavioral engine is constantly looking for new threats that need to be neutralized, and proactively detects unknown security risks.

4. Extra Protection Features

BullGuard has more protective features to offer than those mentioned in the Threat Protection paragraph. Let’s take a look at some of the other advanced features:

Firewall
BullGuard’s firewall employs a layered protective shield to block malware and intruders from entering, and blocks unauthorized connection attempts to your Wi-Fi connection. With the 2019 update, the firewall now uses less CPU power, enabling other apps to run smoother, while the new Application Filtering option provides end-to-end protection to the app downloading process.

Identity Protection
BullGuard scans the web for your personal info (username, email/ snail mail addresses, phone numbers, credit card numbers, passwords, etc.), alerts you via email or SMS if it finds any of these details published online, and provides advice on how to handle the situation.

Vulnerability Scanner
BullGuard’s Vulnerability Scanner blocks the access points hackers like to exploit, auto-alerts you about missing security updates and connections to unsafe Wi-Fi networks, prevents apps from downloading automatically and checks apps and drivers for valid digital signatures. Issues can now be directly addressed from the Vulnerability Scanner interface.

Parental Control
Users can create different profiles to exercise parental control for each child separately if so desired.

Home Network Scanner
BullGuard’s Home Network Scanner monitors your network and all connected devices 24/7. Devices trying to connect are automatically scanned, keeping the network safe. The other way around, the Network Safety Check, a new 2019 feature, alerts users when they connect to an unsafe network without password protection or adequate encryption.

Game Booster
New in 2019, BullGuard’s Game Booster feature optimizes all processes running on a PC, blocking pop-ups and other annoying interruptions to ensure a noticeably smoother gaming experience with no lag.

VPN
Users who are particularly interested in a VPN tool to secure their online behavior will be happy to hear BullGuard also offers a highly rated dedicated VPN product, BullGuard VPN.

5. Platforms/Devices Accessibility

BullGuard’s Premium Protection suite is the most extensive BullGuard product, and as such competes with the topline products of competitors. This multi-device cross-platform security solution secures any device, regardless of the platform or operating system. Depending on the BullGuard package you purchase, you can protect one (BullGuard Antivirus), up to three (Internet Security), or up to ten devices (Premium Protection). The latter option provides you with more than enough licenses to protect your whole family, and then some. As is generally the case, the protective features for iOS-run devices are limited to a few basic options, but Android and Windows really benefit from BullGuard’s many options.

Windows OS

Mac OS

Android

User Experience

BullGuard does not (yet) have the sizeable reputation of some of the big security software providers, but you would never guess that from just looking at their products. BullGuard’s Premium Protection suite is a very complete product that covers all important security bases. Besides being a complete solution, it is also very easy to use and manage.

The console shows all the basic features with separate drop down menus for all of them to access the specific details. BullGuard managed to pack a multitude of features and options without making the console very complicated, which is a great accomplishment. Besides being very accessible, Premium Protection is also very stable and does not have a large impact on your device’s performance. When you open the main features to dig a bit deeper into the available options, you’ll notice that the suite comes with default settings, which are pretty much sensible and do not require a lot of changing – although they can obviously be adjusted to the user’s preference.

It’s noteworthy to add that BullGuard scores a 4 out of 5 stars (or 9 out of 10) Trustpilot rating based on almost 1,500 user reviews, which indicates a large consensus when it comes to the high quality of the product.

Plans/Rates

Antivirus

$29.95 / Year

  • Single Device
  • Game Booster
  • Automatic updates and upgrades
  • Safe browsing

Internet Security

$59.95 / Year

  • Multi-Devices (3)
  • Next-gen anti-malware
  • Parental Control
  • Cloud Integrated Backup
  • Game Booster
  • Automatic updates and upgrades
  • Safe browsing

Premium Protection

$99.95 / Year

  • Multi-Devices (10)
  • Next-gen anti-malware
  • Parental Control
  • Cloud Integrated Backup
  • Safe browsing
  • Game Booster
  • Identity Protection
  • Home Network Scanner

Support and Customer Service

There are several ways to reach the available BullGuard support channels. Users can use the Support link straight from the console. This opens a new window, offering three main options: email, FAQ, and live chat.

BullGuard does not offer phone support, but can be reached 24/7 in the live chat (English only, not in other languages), and by email. The FAQ section offers answers to common problems and questions. On the website, more support options are offered. Actually, the main support channel is located here, offering info on different aspects of its products, including a general search option and a broad categorization of general topics.


Plenty of ways to find answers to problems you may encounter, but the most striking discovery about BullGuard’s support is the absence of a support by phone option.

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Easy-to-use interface
  • Great protective features
  • Useful extra tools
  • Solid performance, no noticeable effect on device resources
  • 30-days free trial option
Cons
  • No phone support
  • No password manager feature
  • No backup storage

Bottom Line

BullGuard’s Premium Protection package is a very complete security suite that will satisfy any user to great extent. It’s strong on the main features, offering all the product features users have come to expect from this type of software package. There are a few features missing, most noticeably the phone support option, but these do not overshadow the positive sides. On top of that, BullGuard’s flagship product scores great on performance: it usually does not weigh heavily on a device’s resources and when it does, there are several options to lower that load. Price-wise, it is in line with the competition, not noticeably cheaper or more expensive than other options. All in all, a solid product – worthy to be considered when you’re looking for options to secure your home network and it’s connected devices.